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Amber - Brouwerij Hof Ten Dormaal

Not Rated.
AmberAmber

Educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
84
good

63 Ratings
THE BROS
75
okay

(view ratings)
Ratings: 63
Reviews: 40
rAvg: 3.7
pDev: 12.97%
Wants: 2
Gots: 3 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Brouwerij Hof Ten Dormaal visit their website
Belgium

Style | ABV
Saison / Farmhouse Ale |  7.50% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: tempest on 06-25-2010

No notes at this time.
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 63 | Reviews: 40
Reviews by the Alström Bros:
Photo of BeerAdvocate
3.29/5  rDev -11.1%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Review from BeerAdvocate Magazine Issue #44 (Sep 2010):

Heavy sea-foam head, turbid amber color. Spicy nose, a bit creamy with vague caramel or confection, lemon-ish herbal and obvious yeast flavors. Big burst of crispness from a lighter, dryer body. Bready, buttery, earthy. Dried fruit of apple, pineapple and kiwi. Yeasty with dried grain throughout; phenols are present, but are on the light side. Wet and alcoholic as the warmth creeps farther down the throat. An interesting beer to try, no doubt, but it just seems scattered and almost a chore to drink.

More User Reviews:
Photo of rhoadsrage
3.55/5  rDev -4.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

(Served in a tulip)
Best Before C,E,2,12
A- This beer pours a deep garnet body with microtrails of carbonation racing to a thick boiling head that soon fades to a thick ring.

S- The clean aroma has earthy flinty yeast hints that grow into a cider aroma with some woody toffee hints in the finish.

T- The clean taste has a touch of tartness with a dry woody cider flavor that grows and grows. There is a soft dry toffee note with a hint of alcohol taste in the finish.

M- The scrubbing fizz as a spicy texture to the medium mouthfeel with no alcohol heat really noticed till it is pretty warm.

O- The dry cider characteristic is the strongest flavor with other much softer hints in the background. Not much yeast character and not much malt either.

Photo of Brenden
3.74/5  rDev +1.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

The pour brings up a big, dense, fluffy pillow of pure white head that settles to a solid finger in height and comes to rest on top of a thickly opaque color I'd call amber regardless of the name. It leaves deposits of lacing in thick patches almost as fluffy as the head itself.
A touch of funk on the nose brings up some earth, and it consists mostly of spiciness and a sort of nondescript sweetness with an evident yeastiness.
Green apple flesh, earth and butter (?) with yeasty overtones comes out with grains underneath and more fruit flesh. Interesting. Spiciness sticks around, as does a certain tanginess. Butter goes away, and more of a woody dryness helps in that regard.
Heavily carbonated, this beer displays a medium body with a sharply crisp tang before a yeasty dryness takes over.

Photo of emsroth
3.3/5  rDev -10.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 2 | overall: 3.5

375 mL corked bottle

Appearance: cloudy dark amber. Saw some yeast chunks floating into glass, perhaps I should have let the beer settle longer before drinking. Light tan head, more like beige, that lasts throughout the session.

Aroma: sweet Caramell with hints of fruit. Red grapes and Apple. there is a lights touch of alcohol in th end which I always love in Belgian beers.

Taste: strong caramel flavor with a candy like sweetness. The flavor is definitely a bit too sweet but it has a redeeming dryness. The hops are rather nondescript but they have a touch of piney dryness that certainly complements this farmhouse ale. It reminds me of a classic, sweet British ESBs but with a belgian edge. It is helping to redefine my notion of farmhouse ale.

Mouthfeel: the body comes equally from the caramel malt and the carbonation.

Not my favorite Belgian, and certainly not the zestiest farmhouse ale, but one worth enjoying.

Photo of augustgarage
4.05/5  rDev +9.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Best before 2012. Poured from a 375mL caged-and-corked bottle into my Troubadour tulip.

Utilize caution, as the cork emerges with dramatic violence!

Cloudy golden brown/rust body with burnt orange and amber highlights. A voluminous angry outburst of papaya whip foam fills the glass, receding slowly to a lasting half-finger, leaving behind messy lacing and an adherent cakey collar in its wake. Glossy clear legs.

Candy sugar, spicy (noble?) hops, fermenting oranges, earth and vague spice in the nose.

Muscular yeast and barley on the palate. Faint caramel-like flavors emerge but are tamed by the phenols and some "barnyard" elements as well (though this funk remains earthy rather than sweaty or tart). Moderately bitter, grassy, and with a bright dry finish. Great evocation of terroir (as to be expected when the ingredients were all sourced from the farm it was produced by).

Effervescent, well carbonated, medium-bodied, and slightly slick.

A touch rustic, but still reeking of small-batch, high-craft authenticity. Definitely seek this out if you are a fan of traditional farmhouse ale.

Photo of tempest
4.3/5  rDev +16.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Picked up a 375ml bottle at Abe's Cold Beer for $4. The cork popped right off after I uncaged it and it took a good 5 minutes for the head to die down, leaving a hazy, dark amber body.

Like the Blond, this beer is dominated by a big spicy Belgian yeast character. It's full of cracked pepper, coriander, and clove with a mild floral undertone. There's a bitter, herbal hop finish and then a hint of bready malt.

This beer isn't super smooth like so many great Belgians, instead it has a rich bitter feel like a great IPA. I suppose I'd describe it as a dark Saison Dupont. Find this beer, it's delicious.

Photo of jbonapar
3.88/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

YIKES! What a start to this beer! OVER CARBONATED EXPLOSION out of the bottle! What excitement. I've never seen a cork fly that fast in my life. I was 1/2 way through loosening the wire over the cork and POW easily broke the sound barrier!

Ok, on to the taste

What aroma.. Spicey slight hopiness a wee bit citrusy...Floral. Fantastic

Taste: wow. I love a good saison, my favorite style when done well. This captures it. Starts off immediately with a sweetness that is quickly overtaken by a spicy bite...A slight sourness lingers as the bitterness comes on at the end. THen, the spice comes back and just stays until the next sip. I also notice a bit of vanilla in there...Just fascinating and complex. One of my new fav's.

Photo of WestValleyIPA
3.92/5  rDev +5.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured from a 375ml bottle into a small wine glass. I would have chosen a tulip, but the cork popped off while I was undoing the cage, and it started gushing, so I grabbed the closest glass. Pours a very cloudy amber haze with a big 3 finger tuft of gushy head. Decent lacing after the head dies to a bigger than normal film on top. On the nose, first off is a big grassy earthy scent. A bit of musty hay. Some sweetness as well. Getting some floral stuff going on as well. Musty and sweet on the palate. Those Saison yeasty spice notes are coming through strong. Didn't catch that too much on the nose, interesting it's coming so hard on the tongue. Nice bitterness on the finish. Some malt somewhere in the middle. Drying. Lots of champagne-like bubbles, causing a case of the burps. Tasty brew overall. I should also mention, it's nicely priced and a perfect single serving size.

Photo of trappistlover
3.47/5  rDev -6.2%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

(375ml bottle from Total Wine Desert Ridge). Pours hazy orange color with nice fluffy off-white head. Moderate carbonation. Aroma of dried pit fruit, lemon, spice, and hay. Taste is sweet with some light bitterness. Fruits come through as well. Medium bodied with a slick texture. A bit fizzy. Finish is slightly bitter. A decent beer, but not sure I’d actively search it out again because of cost/other great beers out there.

Photo of bluejacket74
3.62/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

12.7 ounce corked and caged bottle, best by 4/12. Served in a tulip glass, the beer pours a cloudy orange/amber color with a couple inch off-white head. Lots of carbonation in this one, I could only pour about 2/3rds of the bottle (if even that much) into the glass before I had to let the head settle down some. The head stays around for a while, but there isn't much lacing. Aroma is mostly fruity, it smells like apples, tropical fruit, bready malt, pears, hay and lemon peel. It tastes like caramel malt, apples, bready malt, yeast and a little bit of peppery spice. Mouthfeel/body is medium, it's somewhat slick and has very high (but soft) carbonation. I think it's a decent brew, but I'm not sure if I'd buy this again for $5.99 a bottle.

Photo of Phyl21ca
3.8/5  rDev +2.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottle: Poured a super hazy dark beige color ale with a super huge off-white foamy head with perfect retention and excellent lacing. Aroma of rustic Belgian malt notes with light barnyard notes and funky ester. Taste is a very nice mix between some rustic Belgian malt notes with funky yeast ester and light barnyard notes. Body is extremely full with limited filtration and great carbonation. Very complex beer with nice artisanal touch and rough edge not removed.

Photo of smakawhat
3.02/5  rDev -18.4%
look: 4 | smell: 2 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

From on tap in to a tulip glass

Consists of a cream colored appearance of very tight bubbles of barely a finger head. The rest of the beer is of a perfect caramel color opaque, that leaves a decent lacing upon quaffing

Nose. what nose? There's a nose on this beer? I smell barely ANYTHING, some faint yeast that's about it.

Taste however gets a considerably better after the closed bouquet. A very light aromatic body with faint tastes of honey, but still rather empty. Pleasurable and above average but lacking in a bold profile or of something distinct.

Afterfinish is incredibly sharp guessing from the so called barley/hop content. It is not bitter but is "sharp" it jumps out in the finish which is kind of jarring. There is also a slight club soda finish, and a feeling of a slight chewy wheat ale consistency also. That's not necessarily a bad thing.

Drinkabiliy I would say is just about down the middle, I could have another, but I am not aching for one. Lord knows I've hard worse Saisons. However, as you continue drinking it the sharpness is less noticeable making it more enjoyable.

Photo of LiquidAmber
3.96/5  rDev +7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Poured into a Nostradamus flute glass. Pours coppery golden amber with a loose two finger off white head that dissipates to a thick cap with decent lacing. Aroma of sweet caramel malt, Belgian yeast and spicing with a lingering spicy component. Flavor is sweet caramel malt, light apple juice and clove up front with a drier, saison finish with a mineral element. Light to medium body with active, peppery carbonation. An odd hybrid of Belgian pale ale and saison. It starts as a more traditional fruit forward ale but finishes with a more saison yeast presence. Interesting, but kind of all over the place in flavor. It grew on me as I drank the glass.

Photo of metter98
3.48/5  rDev -5.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

A: There was so much carbonation in the bottle that the cork exploded out as soon as the wire cage was twisted off. The beer is hazy brownish amber in color and poured into a snifter glass with a three finger high foamy off white head that has good retention properties. It took a long amount of waiting and several pours to finally get all of the contents out of the bottle.
S: The nose has lots of yeasty aromas and is quite spicy. There are also some hints of fruits.
T: The overall taste is filled with flavors of grainy malts and spicy hops.
M: It feels medium-bodied and dry on the palate with a very high amount of carbonation.
D: Drinking this beer takes a lot of patience because you can't pour out everything out all at once due to the overcarbonation.

Photo of manitouman84
3.62/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poors a turbid orange/amber with a fair amount of yeast and a lot of carbonation, bubbles dissipate without much lacing. Smells spicy and fruity; lemon, citrus, grapefruit and others all present. Hits the tongue with a light phenolic spicyness, followed by apple, grapefruit and a dry malt finish. Not too sweet, clean on the mouth, not a heavy bodied beer. This is a good beer, although maybe a little 1 dimensional given the style to me. I found the dark more interesting.

Photo of Ohiovania
3.81/5  rDev +3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Really tight and carbonated but oddly sweet and caramely. Just a vestige of barnyard. Thickest mouthfeel I've ever had on a saison before.

After halfway this is way to sweet. Gonna try and cook with the rest.

Photo of yeahnatenelson
3.85/5  rDev +4.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Note: Be very careful opening, HIGHLY carbonated. The cork shot off as soon as the cage was slightly loosened.

Appearance -- Pours a rich amber/orange with MASSIVE tight white head.

Smell -- Bright citrus, coriander, dark fruit, earthy/funky yeast, earthy hops, some alcohol.

Taste -- Follows the nose pretty well. Splash of bright citrus (orange peel?) and spice, peppercorn, clove and faint banana, earthy/funky yeast, dark fruits, caramel and cane juice malt sweetness, earthy/herbaceous hops in the finish. Mild alcohol presence.

Mouthfeel -- medium to light in body with high carbonation. Mild alcohol warmth.

Drinkability -- The commonality between this and the Blond is pretty significant, although this has more sweet and caramelized malts and more alcohol presence. I preferred the Blond, but this is still exceptional.

Photo of avalon07
4/5  rDev +8.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Poured from a bottle to a pint glass. Had a brown-orange color and a thick, cloudy consistency. There was a huge, long-lasting, foamy/rocky head. Below average lacing.

S: A sweet aroma of hops, fruit, malt, and sugar.

T: Tasted of sugar, malt and light fruit up front, with a slightly hoppy finish. Generally, a well-balanced flavor.

M: Like Hof Ten Dormaal's Blond, this beer has an absurd amount of carbonation with a fairly dry finish. Medium-bodied.

D: While I didn't like it quite as much as the Blond, the Amber is a highly drinkable beer.

Photo of Bouleboubier
3.91/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

(poured into a St. Bernardus stemmed wine glass)

A: clear, coppery amber... bottle-conditioned foam that fades

S: vinous, bread crust, grassy

T: faintly musty-funky, mildly sweaty finish... essence of old caramel apple in the aftertaste... mellow bitterness of dying grass... doughy malt later comes to the front

M: roundish, clean... impression of approaching medium body... faint chewiness

O: kind of crosses into the Biere de Garde territory with its malt flavors - mild-moderate aged tone

Photo of sitarist
3.68/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours an opaque, tarnished copper color. There is three fingers of foamy off white head taking its time receding. The head falls to a thick foamy top-coating that leaves patches of lacing.

I smell over ripe apples, musty basement, lemon, caramel, and wet dog. Its not as spicy or phenolic as I expected, but it is funky.

I taste ripe apples, pepper, coriander, and lime. The flavors are a lot more spicy than the nose suggested. It has a weird / funky aftertaste.

Medium body with quite a bit of carbonation that scrubs across my tongue. It has a long finish.

I find it easy to drink despite all of its weirdness. I could go for another.

Photo of superspak
3.78/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

375 ml bottle into tulip glass, best before 11/2014. Pours lightly hazy deep copper amber color with a 2-3 finger fairly dense and fluffy off white head with good retention, that reduces to a nice cap that lingers. Spotty foamy lacing clings on the glass, with a good amount of streaming carbonation. Aromas of lemon zest, pear, apple, black pepper, caramel, toast, brown bread, herbal, straw, grass, and yeast earthiness. Nice and pleasant aromas with good balance and complexity of fruity/spicy yeast ester and dark/bready malt notes; with solid strength. Taste of lemon, pear, apple, black pepper, caramel, toast, brown bread, herbal, straw, grass, and yeast earthiness. Nice amount of earthy yeast spiciness on the finish; with lingering notes of lemon, pear, apple, black pepper, caramel, brown bread, herbal, grass, and yeast earthiness on the finish for a good bit. Very nice robustness and complexity of fruity/spicy yeast and bready malt flavors; with a very nice malt/yeast balance and zero cloying flavors after the finish. Medium-high carbonation and medium bodied; with a very smooth, crisp, and lightly prickly/bready mouthfeel that is good. Alcohol is well hidden with minimal warming present after the finish. Overall this is a very good amber saison. Good complexity, robustness, and balance of fruity/spicy yeast and dark/bready malt sweetness; and very smooth and crisp to drink. A nicely enjoyable offering.

Photo of zeff80
3.99/5  rDev +7.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Not over-carbonated like some of the others. Cloudy amber color with a one-finger, off-white head of foam. It left sticky rings of lace.

S - It smelled fruity and yeasty.

T - Caramel with a fruity and yeasty kick. Nice and balanced.

M - It was crisp, sharp and smooth. A medium bodied ale with a dry finish.

O - This is a nice saison. I think it has aged some.

Photo of ONUMello
3.8/5  rDev +2.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12.7oz bottle poured into a tulip
A: Hazy amber with a lingering 1+ finger head
S: Sour with malt and citrus notes
T: Sweet, only a bit of sour with bready malts, Belgian yeast and dried fruits, most notably cherry
M: Medium-bodied, smooth, a bit sweet with light carbonation
O: Not sure why this beer isn't rated better. Not the most complex ever but unique and tasty

Photo of brentk56
3.28/5  rDev -11.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Appearance: A big explosion as the cork is eased out, but the beer is not a gusher and pours out with a mountain of foam on top of the hazy amber liquid; the retention and lacing were less than initially expected, however

Smell: Buttery toast topped with brown sugar with apples, minerals and herbs adding a subtle counterpoint underneath

Taste: Diacetyl-laden, up front, with buttery toast and caramel; the minerals, herbs and apples appear in the middle; yeasty and sweeter, after the swallow, but chalky on the finish

Mouthfeel: Medium body with moderate to high carbonation

Overall: A beer that is all over the map and not in a particularly good way

Photo of sk8man121
3.51/5  rDev -5.1%
look: 2.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

12.7 ml bottle poured into Allagash chalice.

A: Upon untwisting the cage, I fell into a delirious spell as the cork wooshed by my nose at breakneck yet slow-motion speeds a la the matrix. I'm lucky to still have my sight.

After the gushing subsides, this pours a mostly opaque, muddy copper. 4-finger (yup) head dies down to 1, leaving lacing on the glass. As this almost killed me, I must dock it 1 whole extra point.

S: Farmhouse yeast and apples up front. There's a nice spiciness here. Smells like Saison Dupont.

T: Caramel-apple up front. Fresh bread and spices from the yeast in the center. The hops lend a very unique hint of tobacco to backbone. Finishes semi-dry and somewhat muddy.

M: This is undoubtedly over-carbonated, which gets in the way at first. While creamy to start, this finishes fairly thin.

O: Despite almost losing an eye, this was an interesting beer and was worth trying; I especially enjoyed the tobacco qualities. Won't be purchasing again, however.

Worth trying, but ultimately nothing to write home about.

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Amber from Brouwerij Hof Ten Dormaal
84 out of 100 based on 63 ratings.