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De Dolle Oerbier - Brouwerij De Dolle Brouwers

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De Dolle OerbierDe Dolle Oerbier

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836 Ratings

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Ratings: 836
Reviews: 454
rAvg: 4.19
pDev: 10.74%
Wants: 73
Gots: 83 | FT: 2
Brewed by:
Brouwerij De Dolle Brouwers visit their website

Style | ABV
Belgian Strong Dark Ale |  9.50% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 03-23-2001

No notes at this time.
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 836 | Reviews: 454
Photo of Benway
3.1/5  rDev -26%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Having enjoyed the 'Mad Bitch' by these guys, trying others in the line was something I really looked forward to.

Appearance was a murky deep caramel, not opaque and not quite to the point where sediment appears suspended in the glass. The tan head was pretty burly at first but settled into a nice constant half inch.

Smell. Clear malt backbone with caramel and raisins. Not much alcohol considering its 9.5% heft.

Taste. Definite fruit characteristics married to a roasted malt base. Slight bitterness in the aftertaste that almost veers toward sour. Lots of bubbles at first carry the flavor too much to savor. Warming up, more complexities emerge but still a little too light on the palate. The finish was close to an alcohol soaked raisin.

Mouthfeel. Sticking with 'light' as a theme the beer is in and out of the palate quickly and fails to deliver a solid quality while there. The carbonation might have something to do with it. Trying it on draft might be better.

Drinkability. Despite a few references to 'light', this is far from a session beer. Definitely worth a try. More than one? Depends what else is on the menu.

Photo of RomanW70
4.37/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pours dark brown with a thick tan head. Aroma of plums, raisins, caramel, toffee, and alcohol. Excellent flavor of dark fruits, brown sugar, and carlamel with string vineous notes. Dry and sweet on the finish. Throughout the beer, the vineous quality shines through, but doeasn't dominate the beer. Very nice Belgian.

Photo of Damian
4.44/5  rDev +6%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 2 | overall: 4

Drank from a 33 cL/11.6 fl. oz bottle purchased at Crazy Bruce's Liquors, West Hartford, CT
Red bottle cap

De Dolle does it again with the cute and unique bottle graphics. This one looks even more childish in appearance than the others. Very intriguing (and slightly odd).

As for the beer, what a gusher this one turned out to be. The bottle opened with a loud hiss and a few seconds later, cocoa colored foam began spewing from the bottle. This went out for approximately two minutes before I decided that I should pour the beer if I wanted any to drink.

The body poured a murky, earthy mahogany color with a one-finger head of light brown foam. The head quickly faded to a thick frothy cap that lasted until the drink's end. Thin sheets of bubbly lacing cascaded down the sides of the glass on each sip.

The aroma was robust, complex and rather sweet. Dark fruits came through strong. Plummy, raisiny and spicy with indication of Belgian yeast and brown sugar. As the beer warmed, the aroma became even sweeter and strong notes of caramel and toffee came out.

The taste was quite similar to the nose. Deep and complex. Dark yet refreshing. Rich malts and a spicy, oaky quality were immediately noticeable. Fruity and sweet in the center, with notes of dark candi sugar. Slightly boozy (rummy) on the back end with a relatively dry finish and a lingering, sweet caramel aftertaste. A slight alcohol warming came out as the beer warmed. Overall, very smooth.

As I anticipated from the initial "spectacle," this beer was quite thin and ridiculously over carbonated. On the first sip, my mouth was filled with (what seemed to be) thousands of large, prickly bubbles. I do not think I ever had a beer that was so intensely carbonated.

Aside from the excessive carbonation, this beer was outstanding. Smooth, rich, complex and easy drinking, this is an exceptional example of the style.

Photo of ABCJiugui
3.5/5  rDev -16.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

bottle into large tulip (note- this bottle was VERY dusty when bought, from a store I know never really moves their product very well, so it probably has a good couple YEARS on it, let alone months) Wish there were a freshness date.

A- Reddish brown, tawny colored. Sediment floating throughout, despite the fact yeast had compacted on bottom of bottle. Pours like an aged bottle of jwlees- that is to say, damn near flat with a thin amount of foam surrounding the edge, with no head retention at all. No lacing to speak of.

S- like a young port wine, candy sugar, dried figs, dates, somewhat dubbel like from the sugar component.

T- sweet, but not overly so, again, like a young port- candy sugar, dates. No hops or bitterness that I can really detect until the VERY end, lightly astringent on the tongue on the finish. No alcohol comes thru as things have really mellowed.

M- subtle, slight carbonation but otherwise unbelievably smooth, almost still, with full, soft body.

This was an odd beer. My experience with De dolle up to now is limited and = painfully carbonic/fizzy (still nacht). I was expecting the same here, but the fact that this bottle is either mistreated or just old, really changes the perception and overall flavor profile. It's not particularly complex at this point, and I gather a fresh bottle yields a completely different experience. That being said, this particular bottle I had wasn't bad, and will compel me to find another bottle to try once again. At this point, it's a sipper to be sure.

Photo of Kraken
3.88/5  rDev -7.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured from 11.5 fl oz bottle,

Poured a wonderful cloudy reddish dark brown. Plenty of champaign like bubbles. Smells slightly of sour apples and plenty of yeast. Tastes of overly bubbly sour apples, earthy yeast and bread. Very dry finish. Tasty beverage high abv that cant be tasted.

Photo of dedrinker
2.56/5  rDev -38.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

Finally! I get some back up from the beer savant below me. I too do not think much of this beer. More on that later. Dark murky copper brown with a seriously over-carbonated head. Aroma of yeast, spice and candy sugar. The flavor is so hard to taste with all these hairy bubbles going ape shit in my mouth. As the flavor emerges I sense overt yeasty spiciness, an acidic tartness, and definite alcohol presence. Body is hard to discern as well with all these bubbles. Finishes alcoholic and yeasty. I have had most of the De Dolle beers before (different bottlings, different ages) and this is a consistent experience: too much carbonation, overtly alcoholic and unbalanced and hard to swallow - it's almost like home brew gone really bad. If this stuff is so heavily coveted then we should all just go back to Stroh's.

Photo of WVbeergeek
2.24/5  rDev -46.5%
look: 2 | smell: 3 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

Appears with huge overly carbonated fine bubbles it takes a good fifteen to 30 minutes to poor this beer into my chalice at the end of that time the head dwindles and leaves fine lace to the sides of my glass. I experienced the same phenomenon with Stille de Nacht body appears a murky unfiltered deep ruby brown tea like tone with a large fine bubbled head. Aroma sharp sweetness with a pungent note of fruit tartness mild metallic noted and pure carbonation tickling the nose. Flavor is overtly alcoholic with a bland bitter dirty fruit and malt combo, heavy on tobacco leaf and earthiness very unbalanced with stale tasting hop notes, mild tart apple and acidic qualities added in. I don't wanna say infected but with carbonation like that and completely uncohesive flavors I'm floored. Mouthfeel is highly carbonated tickles the throat and dampers drinkability medium bodied overall. Drinkability is poor I'm looking for fine velvet like drinking ales from Belgium and this one is a train wreck of spice tartness and malt flavors.

Photo of dsa7783
3.79/5  rDev -9.5%
look: 5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

11.2 oz bottle purchased from Wine and Beverage Depot in Totowa for $3.99... the appearance - where do I start? I can hardly see the beer underneath a gigantic foany and frothy cream-colored head that obliterated my glass... dark-brown caramel-colored hue underneath the immense top... strong aroma of cider, sugars, and alcohol noticeable... Red bottle logo specifically states "9% alc./vol."... The taste also complements the hefty ABV with a noticeable alcohol presence underneath flavors of figs, prunes, malts, caramel, vanilla, and raisins... not my favorite beer from De Dolle, but a worthy sample nonetheless... good, creamy and rich mouthfeel, but drinkability took a hit due to the noticeable alcohol both in the flavor and taste... Also present is an undeniable essence of syrup, mollasses, and a medicinal-characteristic in the flavor... different... worth a try... As a side note, for a Belgian Strong Dark Ale, this is a rather bitter depiction of the style with an apparent toffee flavor included...

Photo of dnichols
4.46/5  rDev +6.4%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I poured a 330 ml capped bottle into a tulip.

A: Wow....this is a massive beer. A moderate pour resulted in a head that exploded in the glass and exceeded its capacity at over four fingers. After I recovered and resorted to a gentile pour I saw a dark murky chocolate body that when back lit had deep ruby colors. The head was massive and sticky and receded slowly to a nice rich cover over the liquid it also supported a long-legged curtain of lacing that also hung in there long into the drink (surprisingly considering the high ABV of this brew).

S: It gave off a rich malt aroma supported by dark spices and ripe sweet sugary fruits (plums and dates). There is a hint of caramel and dark bready grains.

T: It had a deeply sweet caramel and roasted malt flavor followed by bing cherries and ripe dates. This DBSA is full of sweetness and it is like drinking a caramel malted milk shake. There is a warmth form the alcohol that lingers and cleans the palate. This is a well balanced and complex brew that begs to be sipped.

M: Huge head and a full rich sweet body. Nice clean finish despite giving a mouthful of complex flavors. This is a taste treat that makes the mouth smile.

D: Its a tad too sweet for much more than a one and out experience. However, it is a massive DSDA that deserves a special place in my stash.

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

Pours out a very dark brown with a hint of red. Head is good size that seems to last and tan in color. Smell is wonderful and almost exactly what I expected. Sour malt with something a bit metallic coming through. Overall, it seems malty sweet.

The taste is unbelievably smooth but complex. The sour that I mentioned is there but only for a bit. Then you get the hops followed by the chocolate and malt. The alcohol is almost not present and well hidden. Also some notes of nutmeg and spices. I can't believe how complex this is. A long finishing beer that needs to be sipped and enjoyed. Just amazing and as close to perfection as it gets for me. It keeps on changing as it warms. Relax and enjoy.

Photo of tempest
3.85/5  rDev -8.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a hazy brown with a tan head that quickly fades. At first this beer just seems like a mixture of pale or pilsner malt with Belgian dark candi, but it becomes more complex as I drink on. The aroma is very sweet and bready, but with earthy spices. The main flavor is a big sweet caramel that quickly turns dry. Around the edges there are hints of cocoa, dates, and vanilla. Those little flavors are what set this beer apart from other dark Belgian as they're obvious enough to enjoy, you don't have to really dig deep to find them. The beer finishes dry and a touch tart and all in all made a nice pairing for beef and then chocolate cake.

Photo of timtim
4.12/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

i know it's a turn off to some, but whenever i open a de dolle brew, i'm astounded at how alive these things seem to be. i've never been able to pour a whole 33cl bottle into a glass at once. deep, dark, muddy, murky, reddish brown with a tan head that doesn't hold as well or leave as much lace as would be expected, this is still a great looking beer, floaties and all. smell is really nice. citrus, caramel, roast, cherry, dried fruit, and on and on. taste is a fairly complex blend of everything the nose suggests with cherry notes in the finish that seem to dominate the whole thing for me. i love the effervescence of belgian beer (i guess that's the word) and the way a good one really seems to dance with no abandon once it gets in you. this one is no exception, but i know that peculiar prickliness is very unappealing to some, so i took a few points off the mouthfeel. as far as drinkability, i'd imagine any beer w/9+%abv has a pretty low overall sessionability, but this one is pretty damn drinkable to me. bring 'em on de dolle.

Photo of Georgiabeer
4.3/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Gushed out of the bottle upon opening. After that, its got a pale tan head with fine bubbles that leave some spotty lacing. The head stays fairly thick and fluffy for quite a while. The beer itself is somewhat transluscent reddish brown. Nice aroma of cellared apples along with some light spice, and a touch of brown sugar. Taste is slightly sour to start and has elements of raisins, quince, cardomom, cream, and perhaps some sour cherries. Pretty nice. Mouthfeel is smooth and creamy. Extremely easy to drink, this just slides down. The fruitiness makes this especially tasty and there is no way you'd think the abv is 9.5. Dangerously drinkable.

Photo of cartdan
3.92/5  rDev -6.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours with a huge light tan head that just stays and stays. The beer itself is an opaque dark brown. Smell is sweet with tangy fruit notes. Carbonation is good and the mouthfeel is perhaps just a little thin. Very good drinking beer with very subtle complexities, a nice Belgian strong dark.

Photo of ggaughan
4.37/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Bottled obtained at a shop in Brugge. Poured a deep brown color and the bottle was so happy to be opened it ran over the top a bit. Poured into my tulip glass there was a 2 inch thick tan head. The nose was nicely malty and had a touch of citrus. The taste was full of malt but had a good balance with some citrus, fruity and yeast notes that overall make for a full beer but very drinkable.

Photo of RblWthACoz
3.68/5  rDev -12.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a very dark, bordering on opaque, brown that has a ruby tint to it when held to light. Darker tan head that rises high, but falls fast. Nose is of very dark sugars that have been heavily roasted. Flavor has a slight roasted coffee edge. The most prominent taste is the thick malty sugar. It borders on being a bit too much though. Feel is thick and slightly syrupy with minimal carbonation

Photo of JohnGalt1
4.27/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Standard 11.2 oz Belgian bottle poured into my standard wine glass. Purchased at the Boise Coop for around $4/bottle.

Cherry wood brown with huge 2 finger lite tan head. Sticky lacing lingers for a long time. A little cloudy from a crappy pour.

Initial aroma reminds me a very watered down Supplication. Next is dry slightly floral and pungent ... Nuttiness fades to an almost dry amaretto aroma. Pepper low coriander and finishes with an unexpected Belgian yeast spiceness and maybe a little bit of brett funk.

Again, the taste is reminiscent of a lesser nowhere near as "punched-up" Supplication. There has to be fruits used in this brew.... cherries with their pits? Very unique and flowing flavors .... spices and fruit meld to yeast fruitiness ending with a dry brett (again) finish. The carbonation is my only drawback, it seems the bubbles sorta push the flavor along making for a not so long finish ... but on the othe hand, it could be said, the carbonation brings all the unexpected tastes together.

Sorta odd and definately awesome.

I have loved this beer everytime I've had it.... I've finally starting reviewing beers for BA, and now I really want to cellar a few. I bet it really dries out and becomes hugely complex.

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

pours a deep mohogany with ruby undertones and an off white head the covers the top of the beer.
the aroma i rich with candied fruits like cherry, raisins, dates with a little hint of rum.
the flavor rich and malty but not over the top, there is an acidic twang that balances the sweetness, little citrus, and finishes with a lingering spice.

Photo of Viggo
4.17/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Thanks to Chris for cracking open this bottle.

Pours a cloudy brown/red, very opaque, medium brown head forms, leaves some lace spots, settles to a thin layer, pretty neat looking. Smell is great, chocolate covered raisins, cherries, light sourness, toffee, bit of funk, very rich. Taste is figs and toffee, chocolate, raisins, sour cherry chocolate, bit buttery, very rich, chocolate aftertaste lingers. Mouthfeel is medium to light bodied with medium to high carbonation, pretty awesome flavours, very unique. Thanks Chris!

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

Beer bottle (33cl), tasted in 2007.
Appearance : mahogany color,with huge tan foamy head (cloudy)
Smell : aroma of coffee
Taste and mouthfeel : malty and sour note in the mouth. Delicate vinous and red fruit flavours (like Flemish red), with malt takes a prominent place.
Drinkability : good beer style 'massive' ale (to drink at cellar temperature).

Review added 11-9-2007, translated from french 3-2-2008.

Photo of Nipitato
3.88/5  rDev -7.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Picked up a bottle at Julio’s Liquors in Westborough, MA.

A: Deep coppery brown. Murky, but despite this, a visible effervescence. The beer is capped with a persistent off white head.

S: Perfumy alcohol aroma is quite strong and largely dominates. Raisin like esters play a nice backup role. Caramel malt aroma comes through as the beer warms up. Is also somewhat vinous.

T: Malty sweet flavor provides substantial base. Raisin esters as in aroma add a nice layer of complexity. Less boozy than the nose would suggest. Alcohol aroma is perfumy and fruity. Good bitterness at the end provides need balance. A nice blending of disparate flavors.

MF: Medium body with moderate carbonation. The beer has a dry finish and no alcohol warming.

D, notes: Very good. Not my favorite style but this one is well made and hides its alcohol well. Rich and complex.

Photo of DaggerEyes
4.43/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

had a bottle at the Diamond in Greenpoint Brooklyn

What a great looking beer! Poured a dark reddish brown with a dense 1 finger head that had EXCELLENT retention stayed throughout. Decent lacing too as I worked my way down the glass.

The nose was Tart and Fruity with some belgian funk and earthiness hanging out. Scents of Green Apple, dark berries and sour cherries are present on the nose. A little bit of smokiness is in there as well.

Wine like in taste, fruity and tart, dark fruits, sour cherry, a bit of pepper and little bit of mint. Some grassy phenolic notes mingle with dark fruits on the finish.

Medium-Full body, rounds in the mouth, super bubbly nice natrual feeling carbonation foams up in the mouth. super dry finish

This is a totally fantastic beer, don't know how many I could drink in a session due to the high ABV, but this a beer I hope to revist soon

Photo of taez555
4.47/5  rDev +6.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

This beer poured a dark ruby/brownish body with a thick off-white head.

Nose has a strong dark fruity smell, with this strong alcohol note. Almost reminds of mescal at times. Lemon or lime juice but without any peel smell. Touches of green apples and pears.

This beer has flavors galore. Wow!!!! Medium to full bodied. Touches of smoke, chicory, honey, apples, crisp granny smith apples, pear juice, caramel, halloween candy caramel, currents and figs. As it warms a load of green apples really shine through. Very tart and crisp. Hops have a mild grassy taste but really don't shine through. Bitterness is just enough to give some balance while peaking through from time to time. Ends with a lingering tart fruitiness.

This is a great beer. Picture the best double you've had mixed with a little bit of samuel smith fruitiness. A ton of flavor and all very well balanced. I could drink it all day.

Photo of bosco7
4.15/5  rDev -1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thick mousse head sits atop a dark brown brew. Very attractive.

Baked apple, cinnamon, black pepper, bread, earthy yeast, and rum in the nose.

Tastes a lot like it smells, lots of apple pie flavors upfront. Some rum, cherry, and raisin in the middle and finishes nutty and spicy. Starts sweet and finishes dry and a bit tart. Unique flavors in this little brew.

Carbonation is extremely high and this just accentuates the dryness in the beer. Very unique beer. I like.

Photo of emerge077
4.08/5  rDev -2.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

2001 (or prior) vintage.

Distinguishing label characteristics: a lighter fire-engine red background, tiny circle logo of a rotund man in a top hat, tipping a tulip glass. I've seen this of signage in photos from the Zythos Beer Fest, but have no idea what it means...i'm guessing a Belgian brewers associaton. Importer is listed as "Wide World Imports, Inc." Deale, MD (now defunct)

An audible hiss is still heard when opening the bottle.
Coloration is a much lighter caramel color out of the bottle, and a high-clarity crimson when held to the light. Speckles of yeast in suspension, due to my sloppy pouring. Less than 1/2 inch of foam, but it's amazing that there's still this much carbonation from a nearly 7 year old bottle. Swilrling produces more, and irregular lacing forms in time.

Smell is vastly different from a fresh sample, old leather, sherry, toffee, a trace of liqueur-like alcohol.

Caramel-toffee flavors, tawny port, a warming feeling as it sits on the palate. Alcohol is alot more integrated than the bottles i've had 2-3 years ago. It's still very present, but in harmony with the other players in the orchestra. Aftertaste of nougat, almonds, and honey. Almost more satisfying than the initial sip. The warming effect is like a nice blanket on a cool evening. Full-bodied, similar to a trappist Dubbel, with a complex character.

After having a fresh one and this vintage bottle side by side, i'm feeling pretty good. Definitely one to sip and contemplate. Can't say that this vintage is "better" than the latest incarnation, but it has aged very well. Interesting to say the least, it's exemplary of what cellaring can achieve.

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De Dolle Oerbier from Brouwerij De Dolle Brouwers
93 out of 100 based on 836 ratings.