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Duvel - Brouwerij Duvel Moortgat NV

Not Rated.

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.

6,549 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 6,549
Reviews: 2,593
rAvg: 4.25
pDev: 12%
Wants: 252
Gots: 591 | FT: 4
Brewed by:
Brouwerij Duvel Moortgat NV visit their website

Style | ABV
Belgian Strong Pale Ale |  8.50% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 12-06-2000)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 6,549 | Reviews: 2,593 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of mjc410
4.1/5  rDev -3.5%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Poured from the 75 cL bottle into a La Moneuse tulip. Easily generates a gargantuan head, just as tall as the liquid volume. Color is bright golden like a pils, but appears thicker. Very rapid bubble rising, and lots of lacing.

Smells of spicy noble hops (again, like a pils), yeast, candi, and alcohol. A nice odor.

Very grainy, bitter finish, preceded by a floral hop note. This is truly like a Belgo-fied double pils. A wonderful, spicy alcoholic taste.

Mouthfeel is medium thick, and very highly carbonated. A delight.

Overall, a good drinker, and a wonderful revisit.

mjc410, Aug 13, 2006
Photo of Georgiabeer
4.65/5  rDev +9.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Pours pale yellow with an absolutely huge head that is extremely dense and breaks down slowly.

Has a clove and teaberry smell with an almost waxy quality like that found in a good sake. Maybe some banana there as well.

Subtle flavors of banana, bubblegum, and spice, with some bitterness and slight tartness on the finish. Very well balanced, and the whole is more than a sum of its parts. Very nice.

Mouthfeel is crisp at first, but with a very creamy body as well- really perfect for this style.

Very drinkable- perilously so. Slides right down with no hint of the 8.5% abv, and with enough interesting flavors to keep you coming back. On top of that, its quite quenching. Really an outstanding beer, and something I've drunk over and over again through the years.

Georgiabeer, Aug 12, 2006
Photo of Socrates
4.65/5  rDev +9.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

33 cl bottle, served in open flute crystal glass.

Pale yellow color is distinct and "pretty" (maybe too much so) with beautiful foamy, aromatic, and brilliant white clean head. Smell of mild hops and flowers, would make a wonderful perfume. Complex taste, like the aroma, with mild hops fading to flowers and almost no hint of alcohol. Mouthfeel is very nice, perfect carbonation and very active. Also surprisingly refreshing, I could drink this all day. This is a brilliant crafted beer, but doesn't rate perfectly for me since it doesn't adequately incorporate malts into the flavor.

Socrates, Aug 10, 2006
Photo of peabody
4.2/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Pour with care. I tried and still had as much head as brew.Hell, there are even instructions as to correct pouring of the beer on the label, hahahaha.
The color is pale yellow to amber. carbonation is indeed one of this beer's strong points.
Smells of yeast hops and lemon zest hit your nose along with the
alcohol and fruit.
A clean fresh lemony taste followed by a slightly sweet fruity taste.
There is a dark alcoholy aftertaste that is quite nice. Very clean mouthfeel.
Even though this is a strong beer, it is very drinkable and I would love to have a couple of these 750's at one sitting.

peabody, Aug 10, 2006
Photo of BretSikkink
4.5/5  rDev +5.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

330 cl bottle into Duvel tulip. Mammoth head - pour unhurriedly indeed.

Liquid gold sums up the appearance nicely.

Taste is godly. Just a beautifully balanced bruiser at 8.5% - eminently drinkable, too much in fact. The only thing keeping me from a 5 in taste is a slightly cloying sensation as the beer sweats in the Chicagoland humidity. Is it banana? Clove? The alcohol presence really exerts itself as the bottle winds down and warms up.

Overall a beautifully crafted beer. Kingpin of its style, and given its generally good availability, I would say I will be drinking this again and again with no compunctions.

BretSikkink, Aug 09, 2006
Photo of demcorhip
4.18/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured with a huge solid head even though it was slowly poured with care. White head almost with body of whipped cream persisted while the beer was enjoyed, leaving thick white lacings inside the glass. Beer was clear and light gold in colour.

Sweet and fruity, more lemon than coriander. Bready smell, and there was also a hint of alcohol.

Very clean tasting, with a lemon/coriander bready flavour. Accentuated with just a hint of hops.

Wonderful creamy head. Was slightly tart. Flavours very well balanced and clean.

An amazingly easy beer to drink. While their was a hint of alcohol in the aroma it was not noticable while drinking and tasting. A wonderfully decadent session could be had with this brew. This is something ill be enjoying again.

demcorhip, Aug 07, 2006
Photo of warriorsoul
3.95/5  rDev -7.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Finally cracked open my 750ml bottle....
Straw in color...two full fingers off bright white head that sticks around for most of the glass and produces some thin lacing.
Spicy aroma...banana, mild clove, lemon zest.
Semi-sweet and very well balanced with all of the items mentioned above...the alcohol is adequately masked. A generous hop bittering shines through too.
Mouthfeel is smooth, yet quite carbonated...finished dry and clean.
Dangerous one here...goes down too easy and is well received from me this time of year. A must try if you are working to expand your pallet towards the style.

warriorsoul, Aug 07, 2006
Photo of dblinkhorn
4.1/5  rDev -3.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 750ml bottle in an 11.2 oz glass tulip goblet.

Appearance - Straw color and very, very clear. No haze whatsoever. Four to five finger head at first, even with a very slow pour. Dissipates to a constant half-finger head that laces all the way down the glass, also thick and velvety.

Smell - I smell plum, fig, and floral aromas. It is a very pleasing smell from this beer. A slight spice smell is also evident. The alcohol smell is well hidden.

Taste - Moderately sweet. I can taste plum and fig, as with the smell. The finish has a very slight alcohol burn, not overpowering at all. I can taste a bit of nutmet as well, and the spice is more evident than in the aroma.

Mouthfeel - Nice level of carbonation. Only slightly more than ideal, in my opinion. It doesn't turn to foam in the mouth. Very smooth in my mouth.

Drinkability - Very good. The flavors are complex and refined. It is very smooth and the carbonation is near ideal.

Overall this a very quality Belgian ale. The flavors are strong but not overpowering. The mouthfeel is smooth and pleasurable. It has a very nice smell as well. I definitely recommend this to anyone who likes Belgian ales.

dblinkhorn, Aug 06, 2006
Photo of GratefulBeerGuy
4.55/5  rDev +7.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

750 ML bottle. Poured into a chalice.

Very active,clasic, Pale gold/Straw looking. Impressivly thick and foamy head 3", retained well.

smells of fine,herbal and spicey belgian yeast, light, crisp, semi-sweet malt, wonderfully rounded aroma. Slightly sweet vanilla, musty earth. wonderful complexity.

The most impressive aspect of this classic is the BALANCE. It's perfect, with semi-sweet, crispy, wheatie flavored malt, mildly spicey and very herbal yeasties and a green, leafy hop finish. right on. The yeast is packed with flavor, earthy, musty, wheatie, it's got it all! and the clean, crispy pilsner malt adds a sublime edge that forces you back for more!!

Feels very clean and crisp, refreshing and active with a decent bite. classic Belgian smoothness at the end, extremely complex feel.

This is a pure classic. enjoy.

GratefulBeerGuy, Aug 05, 2006
Photo of CaskofFlyingDog
3.78/5  rDev -11.1%
look: 5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

It was like finding the Holy Grail when I finally saw this available. (Note that I couldn't find a real Duvel Glass for this so you may have to void certain things I saw like the nose)

Appearance: WOW! HEAD GALORE! Tons of effervencense comes up through a beautiful hazy straw color.

Smell: I smell grain, there's probably something else there but that's all i'm picking up.

Taste: It tasted like sourdough bread almost.

Mouthfeel: Best creamy head ever. The beer itself is actually kinda thick and smooth. I get a little tiny bit of a grainy bite but not much.

Drinkability: I could easily drink 4 of these and be retarded but I would feel retarded because why would I spend that kind of money unless I bought it outside of a bar. I would hope that I would be able to appreciate it well enough after 2. Further I'd probably cherish this too much to drink it more once a month.

CaskofFlyingDog, Aug 04, 2006
Photo of cproioi
3.38/5  rDev -20.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

The General Manager of The Beer Sellar Bought this beer for me, which I am greatly thankful for.

This bottle conditioned beer pours a straw yellow almost to the color of American Macro Lager but not as urine looking. Pours a huge fluffy white head that takes forever to disipate. It took a couple of minutes, close to 3-5, for me to pour all the beer into my glass. It smelled strongly of Belgian yeast with a nice amount of malts. The taste followed the taste with a fruity yeasty taste with the sweet malts but left my palate with a semi dry body that was suprising for such a thin body. I was expecting to be extremely dry but it had just a bit of the residual sugar build up on my tounge. It was a nice beer for a hot day, which it was 94F with a heat index of over 108F. I would buy this again on a hot day but by no means is it my favorite Belgian.

cproioi, Aug 01, 2006
Photo of btighe428
4.33/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This is my first beer review since becoming interested in beer outside the American macro scene. A tough beer to pour, it says "pour unhurriedly" right on the bottle and they mean it! You have to lay your glass nearly sideways and pour very slowly when starting to pour to avoid a huge head build up. Taste is good, and clean, with a little bite at the finish. Tastes fairly simliar to a pinsler except with loads and loads of flavor. A hint of fruit, and maybe a breath of peach are present too. I would like to try again!

btighe428, Jul 31, 2006
Photo of Backer2004
4.15/5  rDev -2.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Even though I could have tried a Duvel since October, when NC popped the cap, I always held this one in higher regard and wanted to wait until a special occassion. Last Saturday night was that unnamed special occassion.

Unfortunately, this was given to me to pour in a 20 oz. pint-type glass. Lots and lots of head, some due to my bad pouring. This one just typifies a very good Belgian Strong Pale Ale. Perfectly balanced with hops and malts, not hot at all (very smooth). Nice mouthfeel and easy to drink. I've enjoyed others by this style even better, but in my opinion, this one should be the standard of high quality..

Backer2004, Jul 30, 2006
Photo of instrumentality
3.78/5  rDev -11.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

I was limited to pint glasses for this one, which perhaps wasn't the best container. I poured the contents of this tiny bottle slowly enough where I didn't expect 2/3 of the glass to fill up with foam. It fizzed like a soft drink, and the fluffy, bubbly head took its time to settle, clinging to the sides of the glass and leaving a small cloud settling on the pale, transparent yellowish liquid beneath. I added more beer and once again, the head rocketed up. I waited a good 5-7 minutes, hoping that with time I could eventually empty the entire 11.2 oz bottle into the glass, but eventually I ran out of patience and decided to deal with the foam mustache I'd be receiving.

The smell, which shot out of the bottle as soon as I popped the cap, was a wet, malty, biscuity, and phenolic/band-aid odor.

The first sip (foam mustache included, although the foam was so light and fluffy that it was easy to get through to the liquid beneath) was very malty with piney, somewhat bitter hops and just a splash of banana, and a slight creaminess in the body. The alcohol was barely noticeable, amazingly enough considering the 8.5% ABV. A bit too much malt for my taste, but I could still appreciate the moderate complexity of this beverage.

I had Duvel once before and I remember not particularly enjoying it. I'm still not overwhelmed by it, but it's definitely palatable and very easy to drink. I'm not so sure about paying $3 for a 11.2 oz. bottle, though, but then the liquor store where I picked it up isn't known for reasonable prices (I also paid $10.99 for a Chimay Blue).

I'll grab this one again, preferably in a 4- or 6-pack if it's available.

instrumentality, Jul 30, 2006
Photo of Estarrio
4.38/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a pale blonde color. The head is white, frosty, persevering and reminiscent of a white water rafting experience. They are not kidding when they tell you to pour unhurriedly!

The aroma is subtly sweet, floral, and fruity with a slightly citrus feel. The esters mix well with candied sugar, doughy yeast and acidic citrus notes.

Taste is sweet at first of light fruit, champagne and coriander. This quickly mixes with a contrast of equal warm alcohol and slightly bitter hops. The aftertaste is a pleasant mix of all the flavors combined. Lots of esters, candied sugar and earthy yeast qualities throughout.

This light bodied, well-carbonated brew is a pleasure to sip.

This is one of the defining Belgian strong pale ales and it is easy to see why.

Estarrio, Jul 27, 2006
Photo of dfried
4/5  rDev -5.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Clear yellow straw-like color, giant frothy and oily white head. It looks very much like a pilsner minus the head. The aroma is very sweet and a little fruity from the malt and candy sugar, with a little citrus-like character from the spicy hops. The taste is of a nice thick syrupy Belgian, but sweeter. A lot of esters in the flavor some tart apricot, almost cherry like, and then even some white grapes. Hops are there, mainly for balancing though, they just add a little tangy-ness to the mouthfeel, which is pretty light and tingly. Dangerously drinkable at 8.5%.

I do recognize this as a landmark beer, and respect it for that. And I think it's really good, but I feel like some gush over it a little more than it deserves.

dfried, Jul 24, 2006
Photo of TheFeintingGoat
4.28/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

An 11.2 oz. bottle poured into a snifter at a very unhurried pace (a must!).

A - A medium golden color that blends very well with the thick, foamy, epic head. It is very carbonated, and something about the rush of bubbles makes me love this beer even more. Quite hazy as well.

S - If I can place this scent, which I'm not 100% confident in doing, it would be that of Lychees, more than likely from the yeast. It smells remarkably like a certain Alsace wine "Gewurztraminer" (try it, you'll like it). There's also a cracked wheat smell worked in there.

T&M - It tastes considerably lighter than its heavy apperance, and when worked around the mouth becomes a medium heaviness and develops a slightly chewy texture. As it's swashed around, it moves from tart to smooth, depending on the position in the mouth and this makes an enjoyable oral expierience. As tart as it gets, it is never overpowering, and always balanced but at the forefront. It never assults the palette as the slight fruity texture mellows it out. On the back, you never taste the alcohol going down, and for an 8.5% beer: marvelous. It seems to have just the right amount of carbonation to finish it off smoothly.

D - I thoroughly enjoyed this beer. It's accessible, interesting to the palette, and a perfect after dinner drink. I haven't found anything that would go well with this meal-wise (though I know nothing of Belgian food) as it always seems to steal the show, but working it in as a meal finisher is a must.
This beer, however, commands respect--for a number of reasons. First and foremost is the price, 10.99 for four 11.2 oz bottles. I try to keep a four pack in the house, but at the rate they keep disapearing I might reserve it just for special occasions. Second, it's not a beer that you can drink a few at a time. It's layers command you to savor it and to drink one takes a bit. Well worth it though. Finally, it's 8.5% alcohol, and packs more of a punch than you'd think.

Final verdict - Well, let me start by saying I have a fairly heavy moustache (pssh to those who trim!) and there has not been one time drinking this beer that I've not sucked the stray beer out of it. I enjoy and respect this beer, and it's finally nice to find something truly good in a local grocery store (hannafords). Bottom line? buy this beer.

TheFeintingGoat, Jul 19, 2006
Photo of RJLarse
4.13/5  rDev -2.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

I picked up a couple of bottles of Duvel at a grocery store to taste, review and enjoy. I poured this beer in to a tulip.

Pours a pale yellow/gold color and is slightly hazy. A HUGE foamy head forms, and can barely be contained by the glass. Advice on the label is sound, “pour unhurriedly.” The head is very resilient and produces heavy, sticky lacing on the sides of the glass.

The smell is sweet. There are strong floral aromas and soft fruit scents. It smells like melons, cantaloupe, honey dew, bananas and some aromatic sweet spices.

The taste has a malted grain presence, but the fruit flavors are also prevalent. There is a mild hop finish, and a bit of an alcohol bite. The flavors are reasonably well balanced.

The mouth feel is crisp, dry and smooth. The beer is significantly carbonated.

This is a drinkable beer, but the ABV dictates moderation. Not a particularly session-able brew in my opinion, but a very full flavored, and well balanced strong ale.

RJLarse, Jul 17, 2006
Photo of supercolter
4.83/5  rDev +13.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

This is a fantastic beer. The appearance is bright golden, with a billowing and I do mean billowing head. Very oily lacing made its way down the glass. The smell is just like the taste. A hint of alcohol, a lot of orange peel and lemon, with some sour malt. Excellent. Mouthfeel was very good as well still very carbonated but not enough to inhibit its drinkability.

supercolter, Jul 15, 2006
Photo of gonzo138
4.78/5  rDev +12.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

A- light and golden with a beatiful gigantic foamy head
S-nice and sweet, a little fruity as well
T- light crisp,slightly bitter with an alcoholic bite
M- very carbonated, tingles the palate a little
D- goes down easily, smooth taste for a strong ale

gonzo138, Jul 14, 2006
Photo of EvilKeith
4.03/5  rDev -5.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Note: Pour this one as directed on the bottle, unhurriedly.

Poured a hazy pale golden straw color with a meringue-like white two fingers of head. Lacing is quite generous and obscenely thick, I love it! Effervescence is just shy of champange.
What can I say that has not been said time and time again. Truly the quintessential example of the Belgian Strong Pale Ale. All others are trying to achieve what Duvel has already done.
Exquisite! Outstanding and highly reccomended!

EvilKeith, Jul 12, 2006
Photo of andrewm190
4.38/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

wow. I love this beer. the appearance is light, golden color.
The smell is the only aspect of this beer that i find marginal. Its not a bad smell, but there is nothing distinctive that i can pinpoint in it, nor does there seem to be much variety in what i smell. the smell is, as i have rated it, average and comparable to many othere beers.
The taste is amazing, generally i like my beer the darker the better, however, this beer will certainly be on my short list for awesome beers. the taste is clean and even refreshing, despite the high alcohol content, it is in no way overwhelming. there are hints of apple, and the aftertaste leaves you inclined to take another sip. the mouthfeel is terrific. this is extremely drinkable and one could easily find himself ordering one after another.
i had tried this beer once before in scotland, and i remember it as haveing a more intense alcohol presence. i wonder if, like guiness, they alter their recipe slightly based on the market they are selling to, or perhaps there were other factors like food or serving type that contributed to my discrepency.

andrewm190, Jul 10, 2006
Photo of
4.35/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

The appearance was a light straw/pale gold color, with streams of bubbles rising from the bottom of the glass. The head was huge and it stuck around for a long time. Classic lacing as I finished the beer. The smell had a lot in it, some malt, phenol/medicinal tones, eucalyptus (sp?), and clove. Taste was equally complex, with the malt hitting you first, then some apples and sort of a medicinal taste, finally finishing with bitterness and pepper. Mouthfeel was warmth from the alcohol, tingling from the carb, and a dry finish. Very easy to drink despite ABV. An excellent beer.

, Jul 08, 2006
Photo of Gregorious
3.6/5  rDev -15.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

750cl bottle into chalice

A - Clear golden color, small bit of ivory foam fizzing at the top...

S - Maybe my nose was just clogged up but I didn't smell much at all. Hints of lemon and yeast.

T - Crisp, clean. Taste of lemons and yeast.

M - Great, extremely refreshing.

D - Goes down easy... Would go great with some chicken or fish during a summer bbq.

Hmm...I didnt seem to like this beer as much as my friends or even as much as I thought I would. I suspect that maybe the bottel was mistreated at some point...
I plan to drink again and review again :)

Gregorious, Jul 06, 2006
Photo of kimcgolf
4.47/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Very good beer. Poured from bomber into oversized wine glass. Probably the best appearance I’ve ever seen. Started out clear golden with a thick white pillowy head with excellent lacing. As the bottle progressed, the appearance turned more hazy amber, still with the same head. Fruity aroma was prevalent from the beginning. Taste seemed a mixture of the fruit and also a hint of spice, possibly clove. The 8.5% alcohol was very discreet; present but not tasted. A great finish topped off a very pleasant drinking experience.

kimcgolf, Jul 06, 2006
Duvel from Brouwerij Duvel Moortgat NV
95 out of 100 based on 6,549 ratings.