1. The wait is over! Download the BeerAdvocate app on iTunes or Google Play now.
  2. Get 12 issues / year of BeerAdvocate magazine for only $9.99!

De Dolle Oerbier - Brouwerij De Dolle Brouwers

Not Rated.
De Dolle OerbierDe Dolle Oerbier

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
94
outstanding

806 Ratings
THE BROS
100
world-class

(view ratings)
Ratings: 806
Reviews: 448
rAvg: 4.19
pDev: 10.74%
Wants: 67
Gots: 72 | FT: 2
Brewed by:
Brouwerij De Dolle Brouwers visit their website
Belgium

Style | ABV
Belgian Strong Dark Ale |  9.50% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 03-23-2001)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | Likes | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of De Dolle Oerbier Alström Bros
Ratings: 806 | Reviews: 448 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of robbyc1
4.35/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Beautiful dark cloudy color, almost like a porter, deep brown with red highlights, massive head leaves great lace.

Subdued nose of dark fruits, hidden taste.

Not as sour as I remember from previous tastes, very deep malt, no sign of hops, but a deep dark stone fruit tastes. Like a cherry juice with fizz and high abv. Really exceptional, very complex.

Heavier mouthfeel that other ones from De Dolle, very easy to drink despite the abv, a great beer to have around.

Photo of Bananaman
4.47/5  rDev +6.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

De Dolle, the crazy brewers? Sure seems so anyway. How is the beer then?

First of it's a really nice and almost cute looking, but still a bit frightening bottle. The beer pours a deep, hazy, brown color with a big white/beige foam.

Smell is very Belgian. Lots of yeast and roasted malts and a slight hoppy touch. Slightly sour from the "milk acid". Some notes of toffee aswell.

Taste is pretty intresting, but also way better than one expects after smelling in. Lots of sweet malts that are balanced by the slight sourness. But there are also lots of candy-like notes of toffee and fudge. The very light hop-background balances it up nicely aswell.

A great Belgian beer, almost in the same league as Stuise's Pannepot.

Photo of Jwale73
4.1/5  rDev -2.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

11.2oz. bottle served in my New Belgium Globe glass. Poured with a dense, three inch, tan-colored head. Excellent retention with thick clouds of lacing revealed as the brew slowly recedes into a solid quarter inch cap. Nose is vinous upfront, but I also pick up cherries, a tart quality and cocoa in the mix. Taste is consistent with nose - the dark fruit and cocoa really come together nicely. A slightly metallic quality comes out, as well as some acidity towards the back. Mouthfeel is just short of medium-bodied, with a subtle background carbonation. I love De Dolle brews, and Oerbier is definitely at the top of the list. A great beer from a great brewer.

Photo of baggio
4.08/5  rDev -2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Bottled@home

A: Dark brown with a huge beige head. No lacing.

S: Dark caramel, Molasses, Belgian yeast, Spices.

T: Funk, Raisin, Molasses, Spices, Ripe fruit, Hint of cocoa.

M: Very spicy with some funk and vinious qualities. Sweet'n'sour anyone ? :)

A interesting brew from one of my favourite belgian breweries. Should be interesting to try the 2006 vintage i have sitting in my pantry in a few years.

Photo of ricke
4.35/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Serving date: 2009-03-18. Best before: end of August 2009. Served in tulip.

A: Dark brown with deep red hues. Slightly Cloudy. 5 cm head, pale brown color, uneven, airy and sparkly. Plenty of lacings.

S: Fruity aromas of cherries and apples up front. Wood, spices (cloves?) and a little twang from the alcohol. Very big and deep small, rather vinous.

T: Again, plenty of semi-sweet fruit flavors. (cherries, red grapefruit, currants). It goes a little tart in the middle, but it quickly develops some more rustic flavors - wood, yeast (not very distinct), rye bread, hints of nuts, earth, chocolaty notes and faint mint. The finish is dry for a second and has some light mineral flavors, fruit pits, grape skin and a slightly too prominent twang from the alcohol. Plenty of vinous flavors linger on. All in all a fantastic smell with big vinous flavors. It almost resembles red wine every now and then.

M Creamy, yet semi-dry in the finish. Quite high levels of carbonation. It slides really easy over the tongue. The mouthfeel seems very well suited for the overall characteristics of the beer.

D: A fantastic beer with great complexity. I really like the vinous character of this one. The only thing stopping it from getting top grade in taste is the slightly too prominent taste of alcohol in the finish.

Photo of JohnQVegas
4.25/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottle into snifter.

Pours a very hazy rich brown, with a fairly foamy, pillowy tan head.

Nose is molasses, dark fruits, with just a hint of lactic sourness.

Taste is phenomenal - caramelized sugar and molasses, bready yeast, with that beautiful, rich, full lactic sourness towards the back end. Hints of vinous dark fruits in there as well.

Mouthfeel is very crisp and dry, medium bodied, crisp carbonation. Beautiful beer.

Photo of bskrtz
4.9/5  rDev +16.9%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Poured from 11.2 ounce bottle, temp. 40 degrees, to open ale chalice

A) Amber/dark amber. Light barely passes through this cloudy, swampy beer soup. Lots of suspended yeast & floaties. White foam discipates to white/tan lacing that lasts and lasts

S) Tantalizing sweet & sour mash. This is Belgian ale with ginger bread, raisins and cocoa

T) Delicious Belgian strong ale. You can barely taste the alcohol, but you'll know it's strong in about 3 minutes... Root beer sweet, dark fruit, licorice & orangey citrus

M) Effervescent fizz & thick

D) Pour one or more, this one is spectacular

Oerbier is a rare, exceptional hand crafted product, and in my humble opinion, one of the best Belgians available in America. If I find these, I buy the entire inventory as one never knows when you'll find them again -- why risk it?

Photo of JBogan
3.8/5  rDev -9.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Pours a fine looking clear dark amber with a bubbly and thick of white head. The head remains throughout but leaves minimal lacing.

Aroma is a very nice mix of dark fruits and spices along with some alcohol.

Taste didn't quite live up to the scent. The dark fruits and alcohol took over, and it really wasn't all that appealing compared to what the aroma promised.

Mouthfeel was on the thin side, and slippery. Tons of carbonation tingle. Bubbles continued to rise hurriedly from the bottom of the glass the entire time.

All said, I was hoping for more from this beer. Far too much emphasis on the dark fruit and alcohol, I wished for more balance. I sipped my way through this one, but when it was over I'd had enough.

Photo of jujubeast6000
3.2/5  rDev -23.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Reviewed 1/8/2008 (bottle):

Pours a reddish brown colored body, maybe cloudy, with a small tannish head, not as lasting. Has an aroma of dark fruit, raisins, dark fruit. Sickly sweet. Dark fruit taste. Carbonated, sweet. Vinegary. Good taste, not too complex.

Photo of brc
4.88/5  rDev +16.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Nice slender bottle with polka dot bowtie. Freshness date found on cap.

Pours a 2 finger head with small bubbles, light tan in color, with good retention but little lacing. The liquid is dark chestnut, with red tinge around the edges of the glass.

The smell is subdued, with notes of hazelnuts, grass, and floral hops.

The taste rolls over my palate in waves. Upfront there is a rich maltiness, with strong molassas and caramel tastes. There is some nuttyness and a touch of spiciness from the hops. The finish hints at a touch of sourness, a bit cidery or like fresh apples. The afterfinish (?) is a bready, biscuty flavor with a touch of hop bitterness.

The mouthfeel is full, and complements the taste perfectly.

Amazing stuff.

Photo of GilGarp
4.35/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Cute bottle but no polka dot bowtie on mine.

Pops with a loud hiss and starts to gush but luckily I have a glass at hand. Pours a dark redish brown color with ivory head. The big fluffy head settles slowly leaving a nice little layer on top. Clarity appears to be pretty good. Pretty substantial yeast cake at the bottom of the bottle.

Aroma is slightly sweet with a fruity estery yeast.

Flavor is somewhat mild for a Belgian strong dark. Dried cherries and appricots combined with a subtle spicy yeast creates a nicely balanced flavor. Starts slightly sweet but finishes very dry. Some tartness but not overwhelming in any way.

Mouthfeel is medium to large body with big effervescence that fills the mouth. Drinkabiliy is good for the style but big alcohol and big carbonation get in the way.

At first the subtlties seem like a weakness but I should know better by now. It was slightly chilled when I opened it but, as it warms, those subtle flavors expose themselves and really make it an enjoyable experience.

Photo of zeeksterusa
4.5/5  rDev +7.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I really really like this brew. I had one in Belgium from the Delirium Cafe and it was amazing. I had one from City Beer in SF and it was more sour and still great but not exactly what I expected. My ratings are based on the Oerbier bottle I had in Belgium. This is a highly carbonated beer in Beligum but was way too carbonated when I had it in the US. The taste was sweet and very drinkable. The after taste was right on. This is a beer to wright home about. I would recommend that you try this beer as close to the brewery that it is made.

Photo of tai4ji2x
3.13/5  rDev -25.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

330ml bottle with no date found. another gusher! albeit not as bad as the stille nacht. poured into tulip.

dark, brownish amber. almost clear, but yeast does disturb easily. moderate head, but soon fades to wispy layer, and then just a very thin ring. lace doesn't stick. not very dark compared to others in this category.

aroma is faint raisins, with sweet spices (light anise and maybe nutmeg), hint of caramel and brown sugar. trace of grassy hop, then faintly spiced again, and then lightly medicinal phenols to finish.

all of the above flavors appear on the palate, but are canceled out by the overly medicinal phenols, which in turn also over-accentuate the bitterness.

not so smooth, with a pretty astringent finish, exacerbated by a fizzy, prickly, overdone carbonation.

ugh... what can i say? i'm done with de dolle! if you do something about your gushers, maybe i'll give another try. but when will that be!?

Photo of optiontwo
3.43/5  rDev -18.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

Vintage 2006
11.2oz. poured into tulip

Appearance: Murky reddish brown with a one inch white head that dissipate quickly.

Smell: Brown sugar, obvious alcohol, notes of red wine grapes, and tart cherry.

Taste: Lots of tart cherry with a deep caramelized sugar flavor. The alcohol is detectable but not too hot.

Mouthfeel: Very carbonated, almost too much. Bubbles sting the tongue. Slightly syrupy with some alcohol heat in the finish.

Drinkability: I could conceivably drink another but probably wouldn't.

Overall: Interesting Belgian strong dark ale but I've had others that I liked more. Maybe I would like a fresh one better.

Photo of TStandley13
4.22/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Was going through my beer notes from the time I was in Belgium, and realized I neglected to post my review!

Purchased a bottle at "Le Bier Temple" off of the Grand Place.

A- Pours a nice reddish-brown color with a nice and thick off white head that left a pretty nice lacing on my glass.

S- Plums, pears, raisins, prunes? Definetely a nice sweet smelling brew. Slight alcohol smell, but hides the 9.5% tag pretty well.

T- Taste is pretty on spot with the smell. FIrst a nice rush of the fruity taste, followed by a somewhat tangy yet bitter finish. Alcohol was hidden pretty well.

M- Mouthfeel actually reminded me a lot of the Duvel mouthfeel, with lots of small stinging bubbles. However, the finish left the mouth fairly dry.

D- Pretty delicious. 9.5% tag could get me into trouble because I could certainly drink a few of these!

Overall interesting brew.

Photo of tmoneyba
4.13/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured reddish brown color with a huge fizzy head that lasted with excellent lacing. Complex dark fruit and yeasty aroma. Medium body with a sticky texture. Medium fruity balanced flavor with a medium sweet finish of long duration.

This is a standout beer.

Photo of beveritt
4.25/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Presentation: Poured from a 330 ml brown bottle into a Duvel tulip. Label depicts a yellow cartoon character holding a mash paddle and a tulip of beer, wearing a sash that says "Anno 1980." Not sure I get that one. The "I" in oerbier is dotted with a heart. Very little other information. No visible freshness date. Bottle opens with a very appreciable hiss.

Appearance: This beer is quite literally all head when first poured. When I am finally able to get most of the bottle into the glass, it is still five fingers of head. This settles very slowly, becoming more dense, yet still impressive. Huge, spotty areas of lacing. The beer itself is a very dark muddy brown, opaque everywhere but the edges. A large amount of sediment in the bottle.

Smell: Smells strongly of sour cherries, very much like a kriek, including a fairly forward sour smell.

Taste: Mildy sweet malt upfront, with a slight copper metallic bite. Notes of bubblegum phenols mix with a sour cherry flavor in the finish.

Mouthfeel: Slightly lower than average carbonation level, most likely dissipated in the head. Body is very good.

Drinkability: This is a well developed and complex Belgian. The strong flavor of cherries would lead me to believe that there are definitely cherries added here, but I know better. I have avoided some of these beers because the lack of description on the label sometimes leaves me wondering what is what. Glad I got over that.

Photo of stulowitz
4.25/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

A - Dark, dark brown, slightest hazy hue. Thick dence head.

Sm - Toffee, caramel, dark syrup, carrotts and alcohol. Sublime!

T - Wonderful, deep, dark fruit and toffee taste. Ends in a nice roasty afterthought. Warming alcohol.

M - Full body with lots of carbonation. As Belgian as it gets!

D - It is a wonderfully complex brew that is just too drinkable.

Photo of BARFLYB
4.58/5  rDev +9.3%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

11.2oz bottle into a La Choulette tulip over some time as this ones quite active. Not sure of the year on this BSDA. A nice hiss comes while opening the bottle.

A- Being very careful and slow on the pour DD Oerbier pours a very dark red and brown mix while settling in the glass. Even with the slow pour i still yielded a 3 finger stealth head that was white to beige color. I Stopped pouring after 3/4ths of the bottle were empty so things could work themselves out. 10 minutes later i come back to an even bigger head than before about to overflow. De Dolle beers remain the most difficult to pour but the results are great.

S- A great dark fruit smell which is common with DD brews in general. The smell starts off with the signature basket of fruit flavors and than a nice belgian yeast strain to balance the fruit. A lot of foreign spices and some sugars. A bit of a tart punch in the nose arises. No hops detected by me but i know they are there. At 9% the alcohol is not present Overall very candy like.

T- The fruits mentioned above include raisins, apples and plums with some cherries probably creating the sour feel throughout. I'm getting some type of berry flavor. A whole lot of caramel malt initially but fades out overtime with some brown sugar sweetness and toffee thrown in. Some hops in the end but not this beers strong point. As i swirled this one around my palette, the flavors just intensified. Where is the alcohol?

M- A great amount of carbonation present with a pristine mouth feel evolving throughout duration. Oerbier is quite active all around. A nice tingling sensation in the beginning from a lot of bubble activity. As Oerbier warms the flavors collide together leaving for a perfect sipping experience with some alcohol heat towards the back end.

D- At 9% i would like to see this brew in a 500ml bottle, this size left me wanting more. One of the better De Dolle offering and i wish i could tell the vintage date on this one to see if aging would be appropriate, even though i see this one being good overtime. In my eyes this one is good all year round.

De Dolle is on my list of breweries to visit while in Belgium if i ever get there.

Photo of spointon
4.8/5  rDev +14.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

I poured this one from an 11.6oz skinny brown bottle into my St. Bernardus chalice glass.

A= This ale poured a deep cloudy brown color with a slight reddish hint to it as well. The light tan head poured a massive sudsy 2" and slowly settled to a dense and creamy 1/4" cap.

S= Complex aromas of raisins, apples, brown sugar, molasses, and a rich dark fruit tartness. Some of this likely came from the malts but I think a hell of a lot of the aroma was from the yeast. To say the least, this yeast was magic.

T= This ale showed an incredible range of flavors similar to the aroma profile: sweet malts, candi sugar, molasses, tart fruits, and a hard to describe but wonderful figgy spice character that was simply sublime. Alcohol was well hidden.

MF= Medium body with a very crisp carbonation level.

D= This is a world class beer deserved of immense respect. The malts are just right and the yeast is incredible. Despite the abv and huge flavors, this remains a very drinable ale as well. Highly recommended.

Photo of corby112
3.4/5  rDev -18.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours a dark reddish- brown color with a nice sized foamy, off-white head. Fruity aroma with hints of sour cherry, oak and apple. Tart, slightly puckering fruit flavor with crisp light fruit notes and a very dry finish. Taste a little bit like a Sweettart.

Photo of kmo1030
4.38/5  rDev +4.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

this beer pours an opaque brown with just a touch of an orange hue. it's got a one finger head that sticks around for the duration.
the aroma has got a powdery yeasty nose with lots of dark fruitiness, raisin, sweet apple, plum, and candy sugar mingle with a creamy caramel, corriander and brown sugar to create a beautiful nose.
the taste starts witha rich caramel, moves to brown/candy sugar and is then followed up with dark fruit: raisin, pear, sweet cider, plum, candied cherries. a just a little bit of alcohol warms up the back of the throat. it gets a little peppery in the middle, with some corriander as well.
the mouthfeel is on the full side with a moderate, but very fine carbonation.
the drinkability is very good, in the context of beefy 9% abv belgian beers. it's a great example of it's style.

Photo of mikesgroove
4.4/5  rDev +5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Picked up a bottle of this gem at Bruisin Ales last night. Had not had a good De Dolle in a long time, so I was overdue. Served at fifty degrees and poured into my over sized wine glass. This one was consumed on 11/09/2008.

The pour was monumental in character. Huge tan colored head reached skyward to a eight that easily surpassed the top of the glass. Good thing this pour was into a 24oz glass. Nice, opaque brown color was evident from the start with a rich looking hazelnut tone to it. The head finally calmed down after about twenty minutes but still dropped tons of foam and lace along the glass.

The aroma was very nice, a little bit ruddy at first. Hints of chcoalte and caramel, rich belgian spice and a wonderful bit of dark fruit all dancing around wonderfully inside of it. But it was once I took a sip that everything really came together for me. A wave of cascading brown sugar and tart apples just rolled across the tongue. Enormously rich and vigorous, this was just a wonderful thing to behold. Nice touches of chocolate and rich toffee like notes were all balanced well in advance of a lovely dark fruit tone that led the charge once the yeast kicked in. Nice notes of prunes and rasins, hints of plums and dark cherries were all very much evident in the profile. The carbonation was spot on, as the rich, velvet like bubbles converged on the tongue and added to the prickly pepper like spices that lasted long into the finish. Smooth as silk with almost all the alcohol very well hidden, this was certainly a gem.

In the end I was really happy with this selection. Very rich and lively with a palate that was well balanced between the dark fruit and the delicous sweet malts. Very complex and very, very drinkable. I cannot wait for the reserve up next!

Photo of Douglas88
4.47/5  rDev +6.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Bottle from Sams in Chicago. Pours out an amazing thick cream colored head, I mean this gave me a pour with 90% head. The body is a fizzy light brown. The aroma is full of sweet candies and rich fruits. The taste was full of fruits; sour cherries, strawberries, also a massive chocolate and yeast balance. The body is fizzy and full. Some metallic and near bitter notes in the finish. Very well balanced, and so damn good. One of my favorite BSAs for sure. Just lovely.

Photo of rtepiak
4.13/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

pours a slight cloudy dark amber. color has a woody quality. head slight off white with hint of brown tones. spotty lace. nose is nougatty malty yet quite crisp. doesn't have a linger sugar to it. tastes quite hoppy. crisp hop, then sweet, complex malt. sort of nougat, hint of leathery raisin, sort of sweet like a good dubbel. fruity. didn't really pick up on the alcohol. some herbal qualities and pepperiness come on a bit strong but work with the malty complexity. great beer. yet the brewery's stronger hoppiness may deter people from the beer as the herbal blend and hop doesn't sit well by the end of the glass. complex but not sensitive. medium body and a meal of flavors. don't think i could ever drink more than one though.

probably best with very salty meat.

had it again about 6 months later... here is the average of the two score and the second review...

pour is a maple syrup amber with flakes that settle. head is medium body with a white tint of that tone. is toffee, candied orange, and coriander and a cantaloupe sweet quality. the taste has hints of that but a harsher palate. has if the orange peel scent comes from unripened oranges. toffee is a bit smokey. some bread not much. hoppier style like most of the de dolle beers. not as peppery but present more so that the typical of the style. the aftertaste has a floral quality that blend with the malt much like a good dubbel. but a tad more on the burnt herbal. good beer. above average as an effort. but a good taste. complex but harsher than most.

De Dolle Oerbier from Brouwerij De Dolle Brouwers
94 out of 100 based on 806 ratings.