Duvel | Brouwerij Duvel Moortgat NV

2,741 Reviews
For Trade:

Brewed by:
Brouwerij Duvel Moortgat NV
Belgium | website

Style: Belgian Strong Pale Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 8.50%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by BeerAdvocate on 12-06-2000

View: Beers | Events
User Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Alström Bros
Reviews: 2,741 | Ratings: 7,628
Photo of claytri
4.18/5  rDev -2.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Duvel poured a cloudy effervesent light gold with two fingers of white head. It had an aroma of malt, fruit and flowers. The taste was sharp with hints of malt and good hop bite to it, a finish that had a mint and bananna taste to it. It was well bodied with a honeyish feel to it. This is a fine beer and the taste and body make you want to drink it in volume, the bite though encourages a little slower pace.

 410 characters

Photo of JamesBerry
4.47/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pale pour, with a monstrously large head (the bottle's "Pour Unhurriedly" caveat was no lie). Classic "Belgian" aroma: light and airy, yet bold and fairly spicy. There was a rather pleasing taste of bananas and fruit. Smooth, medium body. Slightly sour aftertaste.
All in all, tastes much the same as other beers of its kind, but certainly a genuine original.

 360 characters

Photo of downes51
4.7/5  rDev +9.8%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 3.5

Simple. It's the best beer in the world. First of all, the appearance... crystal clear sparkling pale yellow. I'm thirsty already.

Smell... subtle just about sums it up. Not in your face, but sniff it again and there is so much there!

Taste... subtle again. Think honey. Tobacco. Spice. (But all in the background). I want more. And more.

As for the texture... yes it's creamy, yeasty, thick and sooo refreshing.

I don't criticise but, much as you would like to, you just can't drink this stuff all day. Or not unless you are taking the next 2 days off work.

 570 characters

Photo of ToolHead
4.56/5  rDev +6.5%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

33 cl bottle, served in Duvel tulip.
Golden colour; mammoth head w/ good retention. This is one impressive-looking beer.
Delicate, flowery aroma. Very inviting.
Fresh, delicate, fruity taste. Ends up slightly dry in a long, pleasing finish. Hides the alcohol incredibly well.
Superlative mouthfeel and perilously drinkable.
A classic, and deservedly so. A beer I'll be returning to over and over again.

 407 characters

Photo of Ieatlambfries
4.41/5  rDev +3%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Well, mine had a white label and a tag explaining that this is the new label. But I'm assuming it's still the same great Ale.

The appearance was superior. A hazy bright gold, with a huge 3 finger white head of large bubbles. The head retained for almost the entire drinking experience. When the head did begin to recede a bit it left great lacing, picture perfect. In fact I just changed my appearance rating to 5. The smell was good. Very yeast filled and musty. It only lost points due to the alcohol which overpowered the others a bit. The taste was also exceptional. Grains, musty yeast, and some spiciness and alcohol in the background. I didn't taste the fruit notes in the middle that some have described, but I only had one. Alas, maybe next time. Mouthfeel was very good as well. Very carbonated, bubbles looked like they were being powered by a small motor. Extremely crisp. Drinkability was excellent as well. I wish I had more than one. Couldn't think of a better beer to drink to break into my 20th review.

 1,023 characters

Photo of Quaffer
4.16/5  rDev -2.8%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

11.2 oz. Bottle

Appearance: Damn, Duvel always looks greats, especially sitting in a Duvel tulip glass. This beer poured a hazy, pale yellow with a stark white head that lept up out of the liquid. It easily reached over three fingers, even with a careful, down-the-side-of-the-glass pour. As it settled, it gave new meaning to the word rocky. It became an uneven landscape of dense, white foam and coarse bubbles. It took a very long time to dissipate, and never really disappeared since it was being fed from below by the "bead from hell." The streams of bubbles were so strong and numerous that it seemed as though gas was being forcibly injected into the bottom of the beer. An incredible amount of sticky lace was left behind. Beers just don't look any better than this.

Smell: Right after the pour, the aroma was a combination of fruit and spice (mainly pepper and coriander), with notes of yeast. As the head settled, some alcohol rose up to join the other smells, along with a light graininess. Also at this time, the fruitiness evolved into an aroma that was very apple-like.

Mouthfeel: For the amount of carbonation that was present in this beer, it was relatively smooth. There was a tingle on the tongue, but not nearly what I expected. It was thin-bodied and very dry, leaving me wanting more as soon as the beer had left my mouth.

Taste: Overall, the flavor was light and continued to build from the moment that the beer hit the tongue up through the aftertaste. Upfront, there was a fruity sweetness that became even sweeter (but not cloying) as the flavor progressed. Hints of malt and yeast flitted about upfront, with the malt flavor developing into the finish. There was a very light alcohol spiciness on the finish as well, but it was not as strong as one would expect from 8.5% abv in a relatively light beer. This beer could definitely sneak up and bite you if you aren't careful!

It has been quite awhile since I have had the oppurtunity to drink a Duvel. It disappeared from the Wichita market a number of years ago. It was one of my favorites in my early days of drinking real beer, and I am glad to see that my opinion has not changed. I do think that I like the larger bottles better, though. Not sure why, but they just seem to have a little more flavor and a little less dryness.

A big thanks to noclueaboutbeer for hauling this one out to Kansas all the way from Connecticut.

 2,422 characters

Photo of moulefrite
4.38/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Ahhhh, very good indeed. This beer has a classic feel to it that lives up to its classic status. The color is rather deceiving with its rather pale golden color. It looks much lighter than it truly is. The head is quite nice-good and sticky, snowy white and long lived. Aromas are fairly complex and inviting-malty, somewhat anteseptic and spice driven with some citrusy hop notes as well. The mouth feel is damn nice! Refreshing with good dryness and medium to full body, this is a solidly balanced drink-never flabby or sticky. Flavors are classic in that they cleanse with a sweet/spicy clove-corriander? and, banana like flavor much like a German Hefe, while at the same time offering Belgium richness and complexity which kicks the beer up a notch. This is like a Hefe Squared! Interesting how easy this beer is to drink-remarkable really! I will be re-visiting this brew with food very soon as it seems to offer great potential. As I drink it, probably too quickly, I feel I will discover the origin of the name...

 1,020 characters

Photo of necoadam
4.88/5  rDev +14%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Duvel is one of the better beers out there. Appearance is a pale yellow with a huge head. Took a little while for it to settle down. But when it did, oh my! Smell consists of mainly yeast with some alcohol, but not much. Taste is out of this world. Starts out with some of that alcohol kick, but it's very well hidden with the yeast then finishes off with some apples/pears. 8.5% is a little to laugh at, you can't taste it at all. I wouldn't mind drinking this beer all day on a nice summer day outside. First class beer. I would recommend it.

 544 characters

Photo of Zorro
4.38/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours a very slightly cloudy yellow with more than a few bubbles, looks like a good Lager.

Pleasant Spicy smell! Smells lightly of pears and perfume.

Very mild flavored, not too sweet at all. It .has a bit of woody tartness in the finish.

This is much drier than most Belgian strong pale ales. There is a bit of spice and fruitiness in this, but it is hard to pin down the exact taste.

Extremely pleasant! Taste more like "Beer" than most Belgian beers of this type, I really like it.

Mouthfeel is thicker than you would expect for such a pale colored beer. It is just about right, satisfying but no sensation that you need to chew it.

Drinkability is very good! I could drink one of these every night and be VERY happy!

A superior brew in all respects!

 775 characters

Photo of HochFliegen
4.17/5  rDev -2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Had this beer after dinner tonight. Poured in a Duvel glass with a huge fluffy white head that lasted the the entire beer. The color was a bright yellow, very clear and crisp looking. The smell was of fruit maybe pears and rather zesty and quite powerfull. The taste starts off fruity almost of green apples and turns to a bite of bitter in the end with a lasting aftertaste and a strong mouthfeel.

I was rather surprised that I was unable to detect any alchol taste being as its a strong beer. Its really well balanced beer and one that I will continue to enjoy.

 567 characters

Photo of counselor
3.88/5  rDev -9.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

purchased in a 4 pack with 2 sweet Duvel tulip glasses. Beer poured a pale straw with tall, fluffy head that lasted the whole beer. I agitated once in a while and released more and more carbination (and aroma). Aroma changed as it warmed, initially, cool crisp malts and as the beer warmed figs and plums fille dmy nose. The beer's taste also changed as it warmed. Initially crisp flavors of bananas, pears and grassy dry finish. Later, diacytle flavros abounded with adry lemon drop finish. Yeast flavors present thoughout also changed as the beer warmed to add to the overall enjoyment of this beer.

Most enjoyable and the abv well disguised amidst the many flavors present in this offering

 695 characters

Photo of Mangus
3.55/5  rDev -17.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

I had this fine ale with dinner tonight: pork chops, sweet potatos, sauerkraut, and apples.

Appearance- frothy white head that reared up as I poured ( I know the bottle says "pour slowly", I didn't) and settled down to a thin foamy hat. Color is a golden-piss-yellow.

Smell - fruity, slight hoppiness, citrusy, and a bit skunky that reminds me of Heineken and Grolsch.

Taste - smooth, fruity at the front with a slight hop bitterness at the back end. Slight effervescent mouthfeel - tiny bubbles dancing and dying in my mouth. Has a mild bitter aftertaste that I'm not too thrilled about.

Nice beer no doubt, however, with the plethora of choices we have, I won't be scrambling for this.

 703 characters

Photo of SixpointJMH
4.23/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

ah, duvel. hadn't had one in quite some time and was quite happy to once again revisit a brew i knew would be enjoyable. it poursa lovely golden colour that is slightly cloudy from the yeast and is a bit deceiving, as the body is a bit fuller than it appears. the head here (in a proper duvel tulip glass) is simply astonishing. fluffy and pillow-esque and just massive. it holds for quite some time and leaves an eratic sticky lacing that holds more of a ring form as the liquid progresses downward in the glass. the carbonation here is awesome as well, though maybe a bit high at times. in the duvel glass it forms a bubble column, so to speak, shooting up from the stem in the center of the glass so as almost to make the liquid appear to be on fire. quite nice. the smell is good but not exceptional. sweet and floral with spice hints throughout. the taste in rather enjoyabele with the sweetness still dominating here. it moves to a bit of a spicy flavour then back to sweetness before a bitter finish. very smooth, crisp and refreshing. the 8.5 alcohol is hidden well so this brew is a bit deceiving but just damn good.

 1,125 characters

Photo of BeefyMee
3.75/5  rDev -12.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

I served a 750 of this in the early goings of Christmas Eve dinner alongside a Fantome de Noel. What a forceful beer! I only worked the cork a little bit and it came flying out. I didn't hear it land, and I still don't know where it went.

Appearance: Very very very light in color, but I wouldn't say that is bad. It was a little too clear for my liking though. Most people were gravitating toward this just because of the lighter color. The head was soft and ultra-white. I almost thought I poured a glass of champagne.

Smell: Nothing surpising. There was mainly a midrange fruity smell with a bit of a sharp edge.

Taste: Nice. Not utterly spectacular but definitely good. I was expecting more of something, but I don't know what. The flavors seemed toned down in a way. My brother said it tasted like a white, but I don't agree with that.

Mouthfeel: Bubbly and a little tangy.

Drinkability: Yes.

Some people might string me up and burn me but I think of this as the fizzy yellow stuff of premium beers. Keep in mind that's not a knock.

 1,055 characters

Photo of Stingray5
3.97/5  rDev -7.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

750ml dated 10-04-06. Cork practically popped itself after removing the cage - overflow ensued. once things settled down I was able to get to the pour. VERY pale yellow, bordering on clear when held directly up to the light. nice fluffy white head. Sweet fruit and spices in the aroma. Super carbonated, almost champagne-like. Initial taste is all fruit and sugar sweetness, but then a rich roasted malt quality begins to appear, followed by alcohol warmth. Finishes with long lasting sticky sweetness.

All in all a very intriguing ale. Champagne like in it's appearance and carbonation, but a malt monster at the same time. Amazing something that looks this light is so full of flavor. I will most certainly be popping bottles of this on New Year's eve - let's see who thinks it's the best champagne they've ever had. ;)

 825 characters

Photo of Stubbie1
4.46/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

This little “stubbie” bottle poured out one big beer. A straw golden color with a thick tight white head is the best way to describe this beer. The head last forever and will dwindle down to a never-ending white lace.The color is a bit hazy with the yeast mixed in. The aroma is of wet hay, grasses, and malt. There is a bit of yeast mixed in the aroma and a mild hint of fresh green grapes.
Clean crisp taste awaits your taste buds. Yeast, hops and malt all combine to make and enjoyable statement on your tongue. There is a bit of alcohol present but I thought I makes its present, ever so slightly at the end.

Overall: I can’t see why I have passed this beer up time after time. Even my wife (who is from Bitburg Germany and a diehard Bitburger drinker) even enjoys it. A solid beer time after time and pure enjoyment to drink.

 838 characters

Photo of crookedhalo
4.7/5  rDev +9.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

33 cl bottle dated best before 6/2006. Decanted entire contents into authentic Duvel goblet (17 oz. goblet for an 11.2 oz beer, four fingers of head). Thick, rockiest white head atop a hazed straw pilsner colored nectar. Gobules of foamies cling to the sides of the goblet. Sweet candi sugar and musty hops with accents of spicy yeast and a completed fermentation. Citrus notes and black pepperiness, not unlike Orval. Tastes complex like a sneak attack on your tastebuds; sweet and dry, tart and zingy. Effervescent like you would not believe, bubbly to the tongue. Beautiful tight lacing in glass. It's complexity makes it one of the best beers in the world, whereas the recipe history stated that Duvel was initially formulated to compete with the growing pilsner boom of the 30s and 40s. Love this beer. I prefer it out of the 75 cl or the 3 liter bottles, but there's no way you can go wrong with this beer.

 912 characters

Photo of DagFishHead
4.58/5  rDev +7%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Appearance: Clear, straw-gold body (I poued very carefully), with continuously streaming champagne bubbles. Outrageously huge fizzy head morphs into a clean, white, whipped-egg-white topping that's there for the duration leaving whispy lace everywhere. Exceptional.
Smell: Crisp citrus, grapefruit, yeasty(slight must)/crackery, sweet candy malt and floral hop notes.
Taste: Smooth, light-medium bodied sweet toffee malt, almost lager-like. Crisp carbonation and gentle floral/citrus hops dry the mouth when suddenly the cheeks and tongue start to numb with alcohol warmth.
Mouthfeel: Velvety and light. Tingly champagne fizz which devilishly hides the eventual ABV rush. Quite an experience!
Drinkability: This is one devious brew: Pristine in it's innocence, devastating in it's betrayal (hey, I like that). Never would have expected to like this so much...thanks BA!

 875 characters

Photo of Rastacouere
4.26/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Golden ale with a contemplative huge mushroom white head that sticks to the glass forever. Hops and lemon aroma. Complex body like every ingredient was added to the others thoroughly the tasting: citrus, good quality hops that create a memorable dry bitterness. Delicious and incredibly well done. World Classic in every regard and if I could only give one 5 for the appearance, Duvel would get it.

 398 characters

Photo of Jason
4.68/5  rDev +9.3%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

330 ml stubby brown bottle with a best before date of 09 2006. Quick tips on how to pour the beer as well as “Bottle Conditioned” on the label.

Appearance: A perfect amount of foamy head from a trained pour into the appropriate Duvel glass, the lace clings to the glass in patchy clumps. The clarity is great as the pouring went well and the yeast stayed in the glass. Very pale in colour, some would confuse this with a lager as far as the light golden hue.

Smell: Hints of apple skin (juicy fruit), clean alcohol and a slight yeast bite in the aroma.

Taste & Mouthfeel: Clean pale malt flavour throughout. Three big flashes of yeast, hop bitterness and alcohol hit the palate. Big cleansing crispness makes you want an other sip. A tad juicy in the middle, with a big warming alcohol landing middle to end. Mild medicinal phenols peak in the middle and nearly vanish as the alcohol takes over.

Notes: A top shelf brew, this one does it for me and then some. Pretty much sex in a bottle and the devil told me to drink it. Duvel is close to dry champagne but so much more. Between the bitterness and the sheer crispness, this beer is what I expect from the Belgian strong pale ale style.

 1,201 characters

Photo of Sammy
4.2/5  rDev -1.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A pleasant beer in every sense: interesting bottle, light hazy color, nice head. Pleasant taste not overpowering. Found it a bit creamy and sweet and not overly dry, but higher than average alcohol does affect mouthfeel. perhaps it was my batch or the chemistry changes depending on storage and age. Nice with food and would have another anytime.

 346 characters

Photo of BierManVA
3.13/5  rDev -26.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

I'm a bit disappointed with this one. Not quite what I expected. Not a bad bier mind you, just disappointing for the price.

Very light color with heavy carbonation. The smell and taste are just not there in my opinion. Very weak. La Fin du Monde is by far a more superior style of this bier. And for the price as well.


 342 characters

Photo of Andreji
4/5  rDev -6.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Even though this is a very good beer, I did expect it to be a little better.

Pours a golden but not completely translucid tone with carbonation that runs up only through the center of the glass- an interesting image- and builds up a creamy and sparkling white head that lasts longer than expected.

The smell, a mixture of wheaty/ malty contrasts with some soury ingredients, makes it certainly complex. But what you dont identify here and that perhaps I found somewhat reppeling was that the tasting, as you progress, you find the alcohol being ever more perceivable. That held me back from another one and left me a bit disappointed, but not enough to undermine its overall quality.

 690 characters

Photo of JustinBathurst
3.58/5  rDev -16.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

This beer was recommended to me by a friend whose beer tastes I trust quite a bit. What I discovered was that this particular kind of beer is not for me. Quite a lovely appearance, especially in a nice duvel abbey glass, and not bad just before dessert (but of course after a meal, good lord not on an empty stomach).

Everything seemed to agree with me until I actually tasted it--far too full of a spirits-like aftertaste for me. Not my thing, but pretty interesting nonetheless.

 484 characters

Photo of Charthepirate
4.15/5  rDev -3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Even though it's a strong ale it screams Hefewiezen.

Not an attractive color when poured, but the big billowy head is a work of art. The head seems to stay and stay in these big gorgeous clumps till your last sip.

Smell is spicy and wheaty.

Flavor hits like a hefewiezen at first, but right away some citrus, pepper and a variety of other flavors. The peppery bite will catch you off guard. Finally a warming sensation from the alcohol. Not my favorite style, but I can see how this beer is so fantastically rated.

Its peppery bite is the most defining characteristic on the mouth. It's what makes the beer so good, but so hard to drink more than a few.

 668 characters

Duvel from Brouwerij Duvel Moortgat NV
95 out of 100 based on 2,741 ratings.