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Gulden Draak (Dark Triple) - Brouwerij Van Steenberge N.V.

Not Rated.
Gulden Draak (Dark Triple)Gulden Draak (Dark Triple)

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
94
outstanding

2,960 Ratings
THE BROS
98
world-class

(view ratings)
Ratings: 2,960
Reviews: 1,199
rAvg: 4.23
pDev: 11.35%
Wants: 155
Gots: 240 | FT: 3
Brewed by:
Brouwerij Van Steenberge N.V. visit their website
Belgium

Style | ABV
Belgian Strong Dark Ale |  10.50% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 12-19-2001)
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Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 2,960 | Reviews: 1,199 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of ONovoMexicano
ONovoMexicano

New Mexico

4/5  rDev -5.4%

06-21-2014 15:39:52 | More by ONovoMexicano
Photo of JxExM
JxExM

New York

4.75/5  rDev +12.3%

03-24-2012 03:02:43 | More by JxExM
Photo of His_Royal_Hoppiness
His_Royal_Hoppiness

United Kingdom (England)

3.5/5  rDev -17.3%

03-29-2013 23:34:43 | More by His_Royal_Hoppiness
Photo of JeffreyJDavis
JeffreyJDavis

North Carolina

4.5/5  rDev +6.4%

04-27-2012 14:53:41 | More by JeffreyJDavis
Photo of nhindian
nhindian

Pennsylvania

3.95/5  rDev -6.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

11.2oz bottle poured into a Delirium Tremens tulip.

Gulden Draak, often described as a Dark Tripel, is often characterized as the catch-all, "Belgian Strong Dark Ale", and by the brewery itself as a Barleywine style. Hopefully throughout this review I can try to deduce some points of the beer rather than try to lump it in with a style.

A - Upon pouring, it certainly takes on characteristics of a Quad. Dark burgundy body with bright, cordial highlights. Builds a huge 3.5 fingered, khaki colored head that is apparent throughout the entire beer. The bright highlights make it possible to see the absolute torrent of bubbles streaming from the bottom of the glass which really aids the retention. Lacing is on the high end of the spectrum, as there are elegant and eccentric webs spinning all over the glass.

S - The smell is also very reminiscent of a Quad or a heavy Dubbel. Lots of dark, candied fruits with only small traces of Belgian yeast. Figs, plums, grapes and bready malts make up the majority of the smell and there is also noticeable heat from the alcohol. Alcohol imparts an strong ethanol characteristic which is a bit unpleasant.

T - One sip from this makes me feel like I could jump in the vessel on the bottle and sail across the ocean. Very sweet and alcoholic. The fruits are incredibly sweet and tangy, and as they assault the front of the mouth, the alcohol goes straight to the back to complete the two-stage attack. Grapes and plums are the forefront of the siege, and the tannic notes from them really mesh well with alcohol heat. It tastes like a sugary Welsh's Grape Juice with a shot of Everclear. It isn't unpleasant initially, but it wears on as the drink settles.

M - Mouthfeel is heavy bodied with lots of mouth involvement. As mentioned earlier, each characteristic of the beer hits a different spot of the mouth, and the heavy carbonation helps keep everything moving smoothly.

D - Drinkability is moderate. The flavors are strong and smooth, but the sweetness is just a bit too much as I continue to drink. Pretty heavy bodied and a bit syrupy, it's a nice treat to start but a sugary at the end.

Serving type: bottle

11-17-2010 04:19:45 | More by nhindian
Photo of DenisKolkin
DenisKolkin

Ontario (Canada)

4.53/5  rDev +7.1%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Bottle 6 of 6 of the Belgian Taster's pack from LCBO. Served cold into an oversized wine glass. Before even revisiting this great beer, I knew it would be my favorite from the six pack once I tried all the others. Another awesome cap and fantastic looking white bottle covering with dragons on it.

Appearance - Dark, amber and mahogany color spills into the glass and gives a tremendous 3 fingers of khaki head resting on top. Head lingers entire duration eventually fading down into a soapy floating cap. Magnificent lacing down the sides too. Wow!

Smell - Rich, bready malts, caramel, butterscotch a little bit of dark fruit, prunes and maybe cherries especially. The booze is present but not outlandish. To me smells like a 7-9% ABV as opposed to the 10.5% so it is somewhat well hidden.

Taste- Big malts like caramel and butterscotch that start sweet but quickly are reigned in so as to not be cloying of obstructive in any manner from beer nirvana. Light smokey undertone and a bit of a burn from the alcohol especially at the conclusion of a sip. Toasted sugars and Belgian yeasts are also present but much more subdued.

Mouthfeel - Slightly dry finish although that's expected given the alcohol level, but before that the beer is rich and velvety, but serious in character and not delicate.

Overall - This is a beer that gets straight to the point does not beat around the bush and try to trick you into what it is: a serious and delicious Belgian Strong Dark Ale that is extremely well crafted and will put you on your ass if you don't respect it. Definitely a sipper. Personally one of my two favorites from the style with the Rochefort 8 yet how they achieve their excellence couldn't be more different. A huge recommendation for anyone wanting to try something in the style.

Serving type: bottle

11-09-2013 15:01:50 | More by DenisKolkin
Photo of cam477
cam477

Newfoundland (Canada)

4.25/5  rDev +0.5%

09-14-2013 20:59:00 | More by cam477
Photo of bmmortale
bmmortale

Maryland

4/5  rDev -5.4%

08-17-2013 18:06:27 | More by bmmortale
Photo of dherling
dherling

New Jersey

4.1/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Poured out a dark reddish brown, with a bubbly off white head, great lacing. The nose offers lots of dark fruits like plums, cherries and raisins, followed by sweet candy sugar. There's a bunch of alcohol in the nose too. The taste is sweet sugar, bubblegum, cottong candy, and spice up front. The finish hits you with dark fruit again, then some faint chocolate and alcohol. Mouthfeel was creamy, with a long burning finish.

Serving type: bottle

11-26-2006 23:37:19 | More by dherling
Photo of giblet
giblet

Ohio

4.1/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

very nice rich beer. had this one in florida and was impressed.

poured rich dark color. huge carbonation. careful in pouring it or it will be almost all head. nice lace. excellent rich flavor of toffee and citrus, but a little strong in the abv taste. likely to only have one or three of these in one sitting.

suckem up and movem out!

giblet

Serving type: bottle

03-10-2008 15:42:22 | More by giblet
Photo of target88
target88

Kentucky

4/5  rDev -5.4%

02-11-2014 10:59:47 | More by target88
Photo of fizzyted
fizzyted

Ontario (Canada)

4/5  rDev -5.4%

12-28-2011 04:52:57 | More by fizzyted
Photo of slitherySOB
slitherySOB

Ontario (Canada)

4.22/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

I poured this beer improperly, because an accident has left me without the use of my left hand. Colour looks like tanned leather and dry apples. HUGE head due to improper pour. After 10 minutes, it subsides to about 2 fingers of tanned, dense foam. Smells of caramem malts, citrus(lemon? grapegruit?), spices and... the smell of a mowed lawn about 4 hours and the cut grass has dried in the sun. Big malt and candy sugar taste, with some maple syrup. Very sweet. Any sweeter, and it'd be nauseating. Mouthfeel is thick and creamy, with an almost syrupy texture. Very drinkable and goes great with a heavy meal of beef wellington.

Serving type: bottle

05-03-2006 20:52:18 | More by slitherySOB
Photo of ruckus232
ruckus232

Illinois

4.75/5  rDev +12.3%

12-25-2012 20:10:05 | More by ruckus232
Photo of RuudJH
RuudJH

Netherlands

4.1/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Gulden Draak is a classic in Belgian beers.
Carefully poured, a clear brown with a decent head,the carbonation was massive.

The smell gives some roasted grain, dried fruit, raisin or plums. Also chocolate, coffee. Candy sugar/caramel.
Tasting it, it is a bit boozy... maybe a bit too much sugar based alcohol, but after that it's slightly sour and hoppy, classically dark strong ale, with fruits, roasted grains, coffee and chocolate. It's a little bitter in the aftertaste, but not bad in any way.
This is a great beer. It has a wide range of flavours. It's strong though, and the alcohol is present, not making it a beer for all occasions.

Serving type: bottle

04-25-2009 09:53:54 | More by RuudJH
Photo of bschinelli
bschinelli

Illinois

4.25/5  rDev +0.5%

09-09-2013 15:34:45 | More by bschinelli
Photo of themind
themind

New Jersey

4.38/5  rDev +3.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

A very good brew that's not so easy to find. If you ever see it on the shelf...grab it! It's a bit pricey but worth it. Reminds me of Duvel, just an excellent beer.

Pours a good head, aroma is good and the taste is fantastic!

Bottom Line: If you see it...buy it!

Serving type: bottle

03-03-2012 21:49:57 | More by themind
Photo of CreekyJarls
CreekyJarls

New Jersey

4.25/5  rDev +0.5%

04-12-2014 03:18:45 | More by CreekyJarls
Photo of Fish113d
Fish113d

Pennsylvania

3.88/5  rDev -8.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

330ml/11.2fl. oz. bottle poured into a large tulip

An aggressive pour reveals a growing, billowy, fizzy off-tan head that quickly begins to dissipate toward the surface. Body is a clear, brown mahogony color with ruby tones. Decent head retention really w/ some cling on the glass.

Aroma is very fruity and spicy; plums, along with toffee hit my sinuses, along with a decent amount of coriander and clove aromas. Alcohol is apparent on the nose as well.

Sipping reveals a very sweet body with a huge fruit flavor up front, followed by a tinge of alcohol on my tongue. Brown malts w/ some mild dryness also comes to play on my palate. The finish leaves a bit of oak dryness along with a bit of bourbon flavor.

The feel is a bit fizzy at first, and when swishing, foams up in my mouth. As I swallow the medium-body quickly warms my entire throat all the way to my belly. This makes a great brew if you're a bit chilly.

I poured this at about 55 degrees (F) and I'll not let it warm too much. Pretty solid Belgian. Enjoyable, but the alcohol burn DOES hinder it just a bit in my opinion. NOt the best of it's style, but nice, and I love the bottle; it'll fit nicely on the shelf.

Serving type: bottle

03-29-2007 01:56:19 | More by Fish113d
Photo of Magpie14
Magpie14

Michigan

4.5/5  rDev +6.4%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: poured with delicacy, I have never seen such a frothy brew. Huge chunks, big boulders of foam. Lacing was out of this world as it formed intricate spider-webbing. Beer is a deep, hazy crimson color

S: very rich and husky malts, sugared spiced-plums, figs and touch of yeast

T: whew! grains with sweet malts. Bold dark fruits-levulose like. After few sips the alcohol hangs a bit as well as a slightly dry yeast-like flavor. I almost feel as if I taste fresh maple syrup in their...wow

M: champagne bubbly, on the heavy side and a ingratiating aftertaste.

D: a must try for whoever has not! Get ready to have your socks blow off! It is rather sweet overall but it is not a bad thing, might be a turn-off to some
Great, great stuff and two of these boys would put me under the table.
Thanks to midnite2sixman for the recommendation, he is an admirable bartender and a cunning patriot and chronicler of beer!

Serving type: bottle

11-18-2008 03:22:59 | More by Magpie14
Photo of Hopfenpeter
Hopfenpeter

Maryland

4.72/5  rDev +11.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured into my crystal mug the beer had a beautiful murky amber red color and a creamy beige head building. The head leaves relatively fast and leaves little lacing. It looks very attractive and makes your mouth watering.
Smelling the beer very fruity flavors meet your nose. Apple cider , peach and plum.
Tasting this beer you will immediately fall in love with this perfectly measured fruit composition up front, being met with a sensitively calculated amount of malty flavors. At the end this full bodied beer finishes up with an immaculate hop, that rounds the beer up with a beautyful mouthfeel. The alcohol is nicely hidden. This beer is a work of art. Buy it wherever you can. I would drive 25 miles just to get another bottle.what a great beer!!!

Serving type: bottle

04-01-2011 03:23:34 | More by Hopfenpeter
Photo of wolf_switzer
wolf_switzer

California

4.25/5  rDev +0.5%

08-26-2013 06:23:27 | More by wolf_switzer
Photo of tuckerlikesbeer
tuckerlikesbeer

Minnesota

4.25/5  rDev +0.5%

11-29-2012 05:27:53 | More by tuckerlikesbeer
Photo of Peyton5410
Peyton5410

New Jersey

4.5/5  rDev +6.4%

02-15-2012 01:43:29 | More by Peyton5410
Photo of Flabbyjandro
Flabbyjandro

Illinois

4.25/5  rDev +0.5%

08-31-2013 15:16:47 | More by Flabbyjandro
Gulden Draak (Dark Triple) from Brouwerij Van Steenberge N.V.
94 out of 100 based on 2,960 ratings.