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De Dolle Oerbier - Brouwerij De Dolle Brouwers

Not Rated.
De Dolle OerbierDe Dolle Oerbier

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.

747 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 747
Reviews: 442
rAvg: 4.19
pDev: 10.98%
Wants: 64
Gots: 66 | FT: 1
Brewed by:
Brouwerij De Dolle Brouwers visit their website

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
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Ratings: 747 | Reviews: 442 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of Boto
4.15/5  rDev -1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

33cl bottle: Mine poured out a hazy mahogany color, with about no head at all. Pretty strong and nice aroma. Definite raisins, yeast and breadiness. Lesser notes of apple and caramel. really no alcohol other than a faint bit in the background. The texture is lightly syrupy. The taste is somewhat sweet, with caramel and toffe the first you get. some of the fruits come through in the aftertaste. A good sipper, but I don’t think I could drink more than 1.

Boto, May 13, 2006
Photo of Naerhu
2.88/5  rDev -31.3%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Thanks for RobBeer bringing this all the way out to Japan.

A - Tight cream colored head on a muddy brown body.
S - Carob and molasses aroma
T - Chocolate (or rather unsweetened cocoa), lots of candied dark fruit, slightly vinous and sour, rather dry and lacking sweetness.
M - Active micro-carbonation on a medium body.
D - This was a weird beer.

Naerhu, Apr 20, 2006
Photo of cro250klr
3/5  rDev -28.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Pours a coppery brown with an initial thick tan head. The foamy head fizzled out rather quickly leaving an eight inch creamy head that laced nicely till the end. The smell has a bit of vanilla, banana, and other? fruits. The 9.5 abv stands out in this one. The initial sip starts as it smells, with a candi sugar note added. The sweetness dwindles and the taste ends on the dry and tart side.
For a Belgian, I'm not entirely impressed. My first Oerbier was had about a year ago. I don't know what I had prior to that, however, I recall it being a bit sweeter and smoother. On that recollection, I went out and bought a case. This review is based on the first bottle out of that case. Here in, lies the problem with the 'case only law' in Pa. There were a lot of other beers that I would have chosen over this one had I had the opportunity to buy just one bottle to jog my memory. While I'd never pour this beer down the drain, I can name at least twenty other Belgians that I would take over this one.

cro250klr, Apr 19, 2006
Photo of TurdFurgison
3.1/5  rDev -26%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.5

My latest De Dolle beer, ordered at the Sharp Edge in Pittsburgh. It was a murky copper color, I swear you couldn't see 1/8 inch into the liquid despite it's light hue.

The taste was really sweet, too sweet to make it very drinkable for me. I can't think of any other beer it reminds me of, it's pretty unique.

I tried it once, probably won't get it again.

TurdFurgison, Apr 15, 2006
Photo of geexploitation
4.05/5  rDev -3.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a dark, pruney-brown color, with a head that is pretty big at first but then fades to a dusting. The nose is prototypical sweet Belgian -- loads of candi sugar and molasses, some dried fruits, that kind of thing. The taste is pretty straightforward for a De Dolle offering. As hinted at in the nose, there's tons of candi sugar, but that only comes out just after some fruitiness emerges on the front of the tongue. After the candi sugar comes through, the tongue tingles for a while with sweetness (which is almost a cloying sweetness). The mouthfeel is full with residual sugars, but not terribly interesting.

Overall, this is not the most interesting Belgian. Very sweet and powerful, but it's a one-trick (or, at best, a two-trick) pony. Still a good beer, but compared with the lofty achievements of other De Dolle beers, the Oerbier is a bit of a letdown.

geexploitation, Apr 07, 2006
Photo of JohnfromDublin
3.7/5  rDev -11.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Tasted this bottle in De Zolder Café, Brugge on March 31 06. Served in it's correct glass, it made a picture with a ruby red to dark brown-coloured hazy body topped by a decent foam (off-white) head.
Smell: some fruits (can't read my other scribbled notes!).
Tasted malty with a nice tartness to it. Chocolate touch to the back of the throat. The brew had a nice smooth mouthfeel to it.
A very good strong dark ale.

JohnfromDublin, Apr 05, 2006
Photo of rrwiltse
4.47/5  rDev +6.7%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Yum, I'm glad I finally got to try this! De Dolle is one of my favorite breweries, what unique beers!
Malty, caramely, citrusy, yeasty, a lot going on here. Nice foamy head, very effervescent.
Doesn't taste 9.5%, but by the time you're at the end, you can tell!

rrwiltse, Apr 01, 2006
Photo of styrene
4.43/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a small euro bottle into a Rochefort chalice.

Appearance: Wow, this beer looks amazing! It has a deep, ruby-hued brown body, a thick, foamy tan head that absolutely will not dissipate and unstoppable carbonation that's visible even through the dark liquid. Truly beautiful.

Smell: Kind of like molasses plus yeast. Very Belgian, in any case.

Taste: High abv is nearly imperceptible initially, but becomes more pronounced as the beer warms. The vigorous carbonation throws the sweetness in your face and will not relent. Under the bready sweetness is a layer of something rather vinous, maybe even port-like.

Mouthfeel: absolutely effervescent. It's now 10 minutes since the pour and I can still see the carbonation. This is a supple brew, but is by no means heavy.

Drinkability: Outstanding. Oerbier is, for me, one of the finest dark belgian ales availalbe. I would take this over quite a few of the trappist creations any day.

styrene, Mar 31, 2006
Photo of dauss
4.15/5  rDev -1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Presetation: 11.6 oz bottle with this cartoony looking snowman thingy holding a chalice of beer and possibly a mash paddle.

Appearance: Dark brown color. Slightly hazy and extremely effervescent. A large tan rocky head of tightly knit bubbles has incredible retention. Moderate lacing on the glass.

Smell: Beautiful phenolic aroma with a touch of caramel, plums, raisins, green apples, earthy, very light sourness, and alcohol.

Taste: A ton of pehnols come upfront with the light sweet malt body following right afterwards with hints of dark fruits and a spicy alcohol bite. Fades away with more phenols and a lightly toasty and coffee malt aftertaste. A sweet alcoholic vapor evaporates off the tongue after the sip. The carbonation is piercingly sharp. No hop flavor or bitterness.

Mouthfeel: Its hard to determine because it is so highly carbonated. It becomes really creamy when it hits the tongue.

Notes: The drinkability goes down because of the high carbonation. You can tell that there is a lot of alcohol in this beer, but its smooth. As with all the other De Dolle beers, they are wonderful, a perfect beer for people who have drank a lot of high flavor Belgian beers. I with there was a little more malt to balance out the strong phenols. Other than that, good stuff.

dauss, Mar 23, 2006
Photo of kmpitz2
4.08/5  rDev -2.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

From notes. This beer poured a deep brown with ruby hues with a finger of head light khaki head that maintained well through the drink. Nose was slightly like black currant..fruity and sharp. There were notes of light raisin and light cherry. Nothing was overly strong, but nice. Flavor was much like the nose. Solid black currant and raisin with a toasty character on the finish. There was a faint tart zing to it that I enjoyed. The feel was moderate with a nice tight moderate carbonation that kept it easy drinking. Overall, I thought this was enjoyable. The nose was a touch light, but the flavor and feel worked well in this one.

kmpitz2, Mar 22, 2006
Photo of beveragecaptain
4.63/5  rDev +10.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

33 cl bottle. Oerbier pours out a murky, dark brown color with a huge, off-white head that slowly fades to a thin layer. Apples and dark fruit in the aroma, along with a strange cheese-like smell lurking in the background. Very malty flavor, but not overly sweet. Dark fruit, lemon, and some spices. Despite the big, malty flavor, this beer is not at all cloying. In fact, it is somewhat refreshing. The abv is fairly well hidden, although certainly noticable. Creamy mouthfeel. Fantastic drinkability. An all-around great beer.

beveragecaptain, Mar 15, 2006
Photo of EPICAC
4.33/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

I purchased this bottle where I buy most of my other beers, Downtown Wine & Spirits. The label on this one caught my eye. There's a chubby yellow man with a sash that says "Anno 1980." I let this warm to around 50 or 55ºF, and served it in one of my Duvel tulip glasses.

Appearance: Pours a dark cloudy amber-brown with an uncontrollably massive and persistent meringue-like beige head. Lace sticks very well to the glass. Really beautiful.

Smell: Sharp upfront, with an earthy, yeasty scent. Underlying hints of fruit and spice. Sour-apple, and black pepper. Fairly subtle overall.

Taste: Delicious. Sweet upfront, sour-apple and other fruity flavors in the center, along with peppery spices. Alcoholic warmth and a citrusy tartness through the finish. Bitterness is low throughout.

Mouthfeel: Incredibly smooth and silky, tingly carbonation. Medium bodied. Dry finish.

Drinkability: Very drinkable in spite of the high alcohol content. The tart sour-apple flavors make this deceptively drinkable.

Overall: This Belgian Strong Dark has a very nice balance between spicy and fruity flavors, with one not overpowering the other.

EPICAC, Mar 09, 2006
Photo of ypsifly
4.93/5  rDev +17.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Undated 11.3oz poured into a tulip.

Reddish mahogany under a huge head of light tan. Strong retention and thick lace.

Dark fruits in a musty cellar with a bit of citrus zest, some spices, bubblegum, and a little warm alcohol. I love the funky fruity sugary mix going on here. The yeast and malt aromas are fucking awesome!

Again, the taste carries the fruit, funk, and sugar profiles, yet the alcohol is absent. I can taste cheeries, melons, tangelos, refined sugar and a little chalk. The funky sweet and sour mix is top notch.

Medium to almost full mouth is a little puckering and that works out nicely with the taste. This is one of the best beers I've had in a while and my only regret is not buying more.

ypsifly, Feb 28, 2006
Photo of russpowell
4.22/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Not sure which year

Appearance: Pours a murky red/copper with an extemely thin filmy amber head. Minimal lacing and head retention

Smell: Fruit, leather, sourness, alcohol& fruitcake-like notes

Taste: Alcohol, plums, dates, raisins, whisky/oaky notes & intense dryness, some tartness with vanilla sweetness in the finish

MF: Chewy yet effeverscent, good balance of malt, carbonation and spiciness

Good drinkability, a little too heavy to translate into a session brew.

A bit too ponderous& intense for me, but a nice nightcap or dessert bier. Survived it's crossing well. Will tempt me to try other Belgians here. Held off until I could figure out which store cared for their beers

russpowell, Feb 24, 2006
Photo of TheLongBeachBum
4.6/5  rDev +9.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

2006 De Dolle Oerbier.

Decided to try the latest two variants side by side.

This is the second of the two.

Presentation: Straight forward red label with the one and only Oerbier Man on it. White neck label with lots of American bollocks on it. However the defining ID for this bottle resides on the white crown cap (previous bottles had metallic red caps) which has the following inkjet code on it:


No freshness or Best Before Date listed.

Appearance: Clear polished dark brown horse chestnut brown body with a soft but resilient and fast rising vanilla head which fizzes loudly. Middling conditioning with a little Brugse lacing. Solid head retention but it slowly collapses to a thick ring like foam cap. Great looks!

Nose: Softer nose than the previous SPECBREW2005 example. Brown Candi sugar toffees, figs, prunes and dark cherries. Whisky toffees, sugared plums and Lions Butterscotch Tablets mixed with their Poor Bens (guess that’s one for the older Limeys out there!). Hints of sour oak and refined malts with a vinous English Old Ale tweak.

Taste: The entrance has more caramel and toffee, but the oaky alcohol stills rises in the middle. Sourness runs through this like blood through the arteries. The gentle sour tingle on the cheeks after the swallow is a treat. The dark fruits seem to have more of a depth in this one, but the higher sourness and its longevity really add a more complex aspect to this variant. This one is a winner.

Mouthfeel: The second bottle was finished before the first one, and proved to be my favorite of the two that I just tried. Creamy texture with a bold sourness that lends quaffability. Warm caramel alcohols bolster the high end body.

Drinkability: Went extremely well with some freshly baked French Bread and aged Irish Cheddar. The sourness is quiet refreshing in this one.

Overall: SPECLBREW2 variant seems to be a lot more mature in character than the previous SPECBREW2005 which I tried earlier. The sourness is definitely more prevalent in this version. Far from the old Oerbier, that one is long gone for sure (sadly) but I really do think that Kris has returned some De Dolle character to this brew and really improved the Oerbier to a marvelous front line brew once again.

If it's been a while since you tried the Oerbier, my recommendation would be get another few bottles and sample the improvements yourself, but make sure they have the white crown caps!!

TheLongBeachBum, Feb 20, 2006
Photo of ByTor2112
3.55/5  rDev -15.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Found this beer marked down as a store was closing and moving to a new location. Poured a light brown that was almost cloudy with a few hues of red as I held it to the light. Very thick head that hung around and dissipated slowly. Aroma was not powerful but had a sweet malty smell. I immediately tasted sweet tea with citrus notes. I frothed it in my mouth vigorously and it literally exploded with additoional notes of orange and malty sweetness and other sugary characteristics that I have never tasted before. Almost fruity but more like raisins.Hops were almost non-existant as the alchhol was present but not dominating. Very hard to describe, but I loved it and it was very drinkable.

ByTor2112, Feb 15, 2006
Photo of Bighuge
4.5/5  rDev +7.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Appearance: Clear dark scarlet tone. Lots of fine beaded carbonation is visible surfacing rapidly. Bigass rocky light beige head. Retention is phenomenal. Lacing is quite full.

Aroma: Chocolate. Cherry. Raisins. Yeast. Just beautiful. Especially the chocolate covered cherry sensation.

Flavor: Dry cedar. Cherry and chocolate (though to a lesser extent than experienced on the nose). Raisin and dark fruits. Figs. Cinnamon. Candy. Quite an array of flavors.

Mouthfeel: Restrained "feel" of carbonation is quite appropriate. Body is about light-medium. Alcohol adds just a touch of spiciness, but it's really not that evident.

Drinkability: I've had a 3.4 rating of this beer sitting for almost 3 years to the date. Thanks to this gift from the Long beach BUM, I have given this beer a more appropriate rating. This is good.

Thanks Darren!!

Bighuge, Feb 08, 2006
Photo of Skidz
4.43/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

Pours out foggy amber-brown and sits murky burnt sienna in the glass with a decent light tan head, fading to a ring of foam around the glass, minimal lacings.

Smells alternatingly doughy and estery with prunes and figs coming out strong. Hints of chocolate and vanilla throughout with minor muddied hops.

Tastes moderately sweet up front, torrents of figs and prunes gush out with a stream of alcoholic spiciness. Toasty and doughish malts protrude and coat the whole situation with elastic flavors of caramel and cocoa. Finish is characteristically warm with grassy hops delivering a mild, biting bitterness.

Completely and rediculously smooth and creamy with ultra-fine and razor thin carbonation, full and rounded body.

Definatly enjoyable, well-suited to compliment, or to be served in lieu of, most any dessert. Puts you in that happy place.

Skidz, Feb 07, 2006
Photo of maxpower
4.1/5  rDev -2.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

11.6 oz bottle pours a murky reddish brown color with a huge light brown head of large bubbles that leaves a nice lacing in my glass. Fruity chocolate aromas, sweet plum and chocolate flavors .Medium to full bodied with a tingly carbonated mouthfeel, finishes really sweet. Alcohol very well hidden and very drinkable.

maxpower, Jan 23, 2006
Photo of mmmbeer
4.5/5  rDev +7.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

330 mL, bottle-conditioned with SPE__ BREW 2005 on the cap (some of the printing ran over the edge). It pours into the chalice a dark brown/garnet color with a good amount of carbonation beads and a 2 finger tan head that takes a long time to recede but never goes away and leaves nice lacing throughout. It smells nice and fruity with green apples, cherries, caramel, and maybe some spicy phenols. The flavor is about the same with the addition of pepper and some warmth. It has a medium to thick body that has good carbonation from the conditioning and becomes smooth. It's good, though I probably didn't identify some of the flavors and aromas, but it was a constant sipper beer that I would try again. Now to try other De Dolle offerings....

mmmbeer, Jan 19, 2006
Photo of whartontallboy
4.13/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Deep burgundy/crimson pour with a nice-sized head of tiny tan bubbles, tighly packed. Leaves a decent amount of lace as it goes down, still some foam left as I'm taking my last sips.

Smell is malty with big fruitiness, with cherries and dates coming through the most clearly, backed by a bit of funky yeast and some alcohol.

Flavor is pretty complex, with a big maltiness making its presence felt and the same alcohol-soaked dark fruits from the nose, with a raisin flavor entering in with the dates and cherries, and there's a bit of a light chocolate/caramel flavor at play in there, too. Flavor has a lot of sweetness but dries out considerably on the finish. Alcohol is hot in there, but not so much that it gets annoying or distracting. Mouthfeel is nice and chewy.

Overall: A pretty good beer for the style, but priced a little steep. Certainly fairly complex and interesting, one that's worth trying. The label made me laugh.

whartontallboy, Dec 19, 2005
Photo of blimey
4.08/5  rDev -2.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Just picked this up today- trying all the de dolle I can find at Star's. Poured a massive head into the glass which remains nearly throughout. Deep brown hue. The taste is slightly acidic with notes of raisins or prunes with a slightly metallic aftertaste. Malty throughtout with a decent body. I would consider this again if left with fewer options from this brewery and especially if I could find it on tap.

blimey, Dec 18, 2005
Photo of asabreed
4.47/5  rDev +6.7%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Gotta love the labels for De Dolle. The yellow dude with the fork and the chalice. Says it all.

33 cl bottle poured into my Corsendonk tulip.

Appearance: Holy foamy head. I say this is insane a lot, but goddamn, even with the slowest pour this thing turns into a gurgling off-white loaf of bread extremely quickly. Once the head dies down I'm able to finally pour in the rest of the bottle, with a bit left at the bottom. A thick layer of yeast is left in the bottom of the bottle, and there are some chunks on the bottom of my glass too. The body is a cloudy brown, with slight amber hues, and many bubbles surfacing.

Smell: Belgian yeast, tons of malt sweetness, and tons of tropical fruit. For how great it is, I was hoping for more of a complexity in the aroma. One of the fruits that comes to the forefront though, oddly enough maybe, is pineapple. In addition there are maybe some sour cherries and strong dark berries too.

Taste: What the aroma may lack as far as complexity, it surely comes back ten fold in the taste. Start with a slight sourness, where the sour cherries come into play a bit, then going into some raisin / fig-type sweetness, some yeastiness and maltiness always there, and then it finishes slightly sour, yeasty as hell, and fruity as hell, with the pineapple completely taking hold by the end. But the finish brings it down a notch or two with the sourness taking over, which is surprising, and a very nice mix by the end on the back of the tongue.

Mouthfeel: Awesomely creamy and yeasty and thick (from all the malts and sugars). Carbonation is pretty much perfect. Velvety and indomitable, make sure you swish it around, because it's one of the best qualities of the brew.

Drinkability: Let's face it, regardless of the maybe not-as-high-as-many-BSDAs 7.5% ABV, who wants to drink more than one at a time? Especially since the bottle was around $4.25, this is a great winter sipper, surely a treat, and positively a singular and beyond pleasant brew.

asabreed, Dec 10, 2005
Photo of yelterdow
3.1/5  rDev -26%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Served at somewhere between cellar and room temperature in a Duvel tulip. Been sitting on this one for a few months, now's the time for action.

Appearance- A medium reddish brown, like a young ruby port. The thin layer of foam reduces quickly to a sparse ring around the glass. No lacing left behind. I have chosen to swirl in all sediment.

Smell- Alcohol soaked in alcohol... with a wicked underlying sweetness from the malts. This is heavy, don't let the happy little guy on the label fool you. Candied fruit of the darkest kind, left to ferment for all eternity.

Taste- I have opted to incorporate all sediment (which was substantial) and therefore am experiencing a yeast infection. Gigantic sugary sweet maltiness and bracing alcohol attack the tongue, leaving behind an unforgiving plundering. Huge ass presence.

Mouthfeel/Drinkability- Very thin but syrupy at the same time, if that makes any sense. Tough beer to enjoy by myself... it's seriously big and bruising. I am now bleeding about the head.

yelterdow, Nov 22, 2005
Photo of Foxman
4.13/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

It pours a dense muddy brown, with glinting ruby highlights and bubbles suspended mid-fluid. The merest lift of broad bubbled head halts before it develops to more than a sheer film. Thin rings of lacing circle the inside of the glass.

The aroma delivers a stout column of toasted malt with interlaced notes of caramel, molasses, mocha, prunes, and perhaps other earthy fruits. An underlying gamey sourness blankets the backstage.

A sip brings forth a thick flow of grounded malt, buoying and element of swollen prune/fig sweetness. Caramel and molasses make a play and twine with a hearty tendon of alcohol to open wide the center. The sweetness soon falls away to a vague bitterness ringing the mouth as well as a brief glimpse of indistinct funkiness. It's finalized by the drying sensation of alcohol and a vestige of the transmuted sweetness cum bitterness.

Damn near heavy bodied, it has a live feel on the palate despite what initially seemed to be low carbonation. It comes across as chewy, alomst like a rich fruit juice.

It's fresh-squeezed Belgian prunefigmalt juice with the benefit of some slightly funkified fermentation. Due to its hefty profile it is not the Belgian I'd pick for multiple consumption, but it's well worth a try for self-edification. It's got some real kick and bears close watching as you drink it. I tried this because it was there, and having done so, I'm glad I did. While it may not be something I crave, it's worthy of a return visit.

Foxman, Nov 13, 2005
De Dolle Oerbier from Brouwerij De Dolle Brouwers
93 out of 100 based on 747 ratings.