1. The wait is over! Download the BeerAdvocate app on iTunes or Google Play now.
  2. Get 12 issues / year of BeerAdvocate magazine for only $9.99!

Biere D'Hougoumont - Brewery Ommegang

Not Rated.
Biere D'HougoumontBiere D'Hougoumont

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
86
very good

331 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 331
Reviews: 79
rAvg: 3.84
pDev: 11.72%
Wants: 14
Gots: 31 | FT: 1
Brewed by:
Brewery Ommegang visit their website
New York, United States

Style | ABV
Bière de Garde |  7.30% ABV

Availability: Limited (brewed once)

Notes/Commercial Description:
Our Limited Edition Biere d’ Hougoumont is brewed with traditional French ale yeast, eight malts, French Strisselspalt hops, and aged on white oak and hard maple wooden staves. A traditional Biere De Garde style, this malty French-style farmhouse ale is brewed to be aged. The name honors the Hougoumont farmstead at the pivotal center of the Waterloo battlefield. Napoleon repeatedly failed to take the fortification, he then lost the battle and “met his Waterloo.”

(Beer added by: billab914 on 07-03-2012)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Usefulness | Recent | High | Low | Top Raters
Ratings: 331 | Reviews: 79 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of Hopheadjeffery
4/5  rDev +4.2%

Hopheadjeffery, Mar 09, 2013
Photo of LambicKing
3.5/5  rDev -8.9%

LambicKing, Mar 07, 2013
Photo of Hanzo
3.75/5  rDev -2.3%

Hanzo, Mar 04, 2013
Photo of ste5venla
3.75/5  rDev -2.3%

ste5venla, Mar 01, 2013
Photo of Lee45102
4/5  rDev +4.2%

Lee45102, Feb 24, 2013
Photo of Baab200
3.75/5  rDev -2.3%

Baab200, Feb 18, 2013
Photo of gr0g
4.11/5  rDev +7%

Color is revealed as an orange-amber after a pour into an Ommegang tulip. Moderate cloudiness. A 2+ finger head shows good retention, but only some sparse lacing is left behind. The usual farmhouse ale aromas are present along with some oak character picked up from the aging on oak staves. Though this beer was also aged on maple staves, I'm not able to pick up any maple. Some chalky yeast and plenty of toffee malt. The oak adds a very nice complexity to the aroma.

The flavor profile features a very nice interplay between malty sweetness, tartness, bitterness, and oak. While generally dry, the underlying malt body is allowed to showcase a slightly sweet butterscotch note. A slight tartness throughout leads to a bitter finish. A slight vanilla note is lent by the oak aging. Carbonation is lively but still somewhat soft.

Ommegang impresses me more often than not, so I'm not surprised at how good this is. The wood aging imparts a very nice complexity. Despite the price premium, this is very much worth picking up. I'd definitely like to see this brewed again.

gr0g, Feb 17, 2013
Photo of jsanford
3.75/5  rDev -2.3%

jsanford, Feb 11, 2013
Photo of Haybeerman
4/5  rDev +4.2%

Haybeerman, Feb 07, 2013
Photo of mkrass
3.5/5  rDev -8.9%

mkrass, Feb 07, 2013
Photo of BugTownPub
4/5  rDev +4.2%

BugTownPub, Feb 06, 2013
Photo of JVan
4/5  rDev +4.2%

JVan, Feb 04, 2013
Photo of Amerikon
3.75/5  rDev -2.3%

Amerikon, Feb 01, 2013
Photo of BEERchitect
3.76/5  rDev -2.1%

The biere de garde style seems to be a "sweetheart" style of beer right now, as many brewers have to give their own recipe a shake. However, many shortcuts leave the beer's tasting highly insufficient. But not such ill effects are found with this Ommegang version- it takes the charm of authentic Belgian brewing technique and ingredient choices to pull this off the right way.

D'Hougoumont pours with a hazy peach-copper combination in color. Still, the beer allows soft light to brighten the beer just a touch. Its firm ivory head provides a cottony structure that retains and laces beautifully. The beer simply promotes notions of yeast and fruit, even to the eye.

A whiff of fresh baking bread, bread dough, and yeast form the malty underpinnings are are highly evident to the nose. Backed with fruit esters of peach, oranges, and sulfury apples- the beer starts to show its Belgo-French influences. Light cork-like must offers a slight cellared aroma that adds to the beer's complexity.

Soft and bready, the beer starts off with light kettle caramelization that provides a semi-sweet taste to start to accompany the malty taste of bread dough and sugar cookies. Weave in a zesty taste of freshly zested oranges, peach, and green apple and we have a balanced taste that carries the farmhouse ale into finish. Generous hopping rates contribute herbal flavors of lemongrass before churning to an earthen bitter flavor to close. Light flavors of weathered woods and cork rise late and swirl about the aftertaste and invite the next sip.

The beer's dense texture also seems of bread to its mouthfeel as well. The middle palate waivers slightly to shed the ample creamy carbonation and pushes the textures toward a semi-dry finish with light minty alcohol, and grassy hop dryness.

D'Hougoumont is a fresh "celler" beer that hasn't yet earned its maturity. Its that age that would traditionally dry the beer and develop greater depth of earth flavor and texture. I'm not sure if Ommegang's version can achieve this, but its rush to market leaves it slightly simplified. Still, it's head's and shoulders better than many American attempts at the style.

BEERchitect, Jan 30, 2013
Photo of lightfool
4.5/5  rDev +17.2%

lightfool, Jan 30, 2013
Photo of brandoman63
3.75/5  rDev -2.3%

brandoman63, Jan 28, 2013
Photo of craigdb
4/5  rDev +4.2%

craigdb, Jan 27, 2013
Photo of SadMachine
3.75/5  rDev -2.3%

SadMachine, Jan 26, 2013
Photo of LiquidAmber
4.23/5  rDev +10.2%

Poured into an Ommegang flute glass. Pours a coppery amber with a nice two finger off-white head with great retention and lots of lacing. Spicy aroma of orange rind, caramel malt, Belgian yeast and light grassy hops. Flavor an interesting, well integrated caramel malt, maple syrup, oak, vanilla and stone fruit. Finishes drier with lingering maple and pleasant wood. Light to medium bodied, but excellent mouth feel from active carbonation. This is definitely a bit sweet for a biere de garde, and does not have a strong wild yeast element, but I found it delicious. The deviation from a biere de garde were all towards my taste. Very enjoyable.

LiquidAmber, Jan 26, 2013
Photo of pknyc
3.75/5  rDev -2.3%

pknyc, Jan 26, 2013
Photo of tastymug
3.25/5  rDev -15.4%

tastymug, Jan 25, 2013
Photo of Buggies
4.5/5  rDev +17.2%

Buggies, Jan 23, 2013
Photo of THECPJ
3.75/5  rDev -2.3%

THECPJ, Jan 22, 2013
Photo of Zkman87
4/5  rDev +4.2%

Zkman87, Jan 20, 2013
Photo of wheatshock
3.5/5  rDev -8.9%

wheatshock, Jan 19, 2013
Biere D'Hougoumont from Brewery Ommegang
86 out of 100 based on 331 ratings.