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

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

Educational use only; do not reuse.

1,270 Reviews

(Read More)
Reviews: 1,270
Hads: 3,610
Avg: 4.2
pDev: 19.52%
Wants: 268
Gots: 650 | FT: 4
Brewed by:
Brouwerij Van Steenberge N.V. visit their website

Style | ABV
Belgian Strong Dark Ale |  10.50% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 12-19-2001

No notes at this time.
View: Beers (92) | Events
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Gulden Draak (Dark Triple) Alström Bros
Reviews: 1,270 | Hads: 3,610
Photo of talkinghatrack
4.35/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

On draft at Ginger Man, from notes.

a - nice burgundy. Clear, no head.

s - Belgian yeast, bananas. Some alcohol.

t - nice tangy and sweet. Solid ABV mask.

m - medium body, nice carbonation.

d - tangyness balances ABV. Smooth. Some alcohol on finish but we're talking 10.5% here. Good stuff.

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Photo of pinkano
3.97/5  rDev -5.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A - dark little hazy amber with nice head
S - very sweet smell of dark fruits, jam, caramel, malt and apples
T - sweet taste, which mixes with dark fruits (plums, figs, dates), coffee, malt, yeast with nice long end.
M - medium to full body with medium to low carbonation
D - drinkable, but very heavy and full and also strong, so be carefull

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Photo of mickstepp
3.9/5  rDev -7.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

I was lucky enough to find this on tap at Teller's in Hyde Park. Served in an authentic Gulden Draak tulip glass. Dark brown/amber pour with a nice frothy head. Spicy nutmeg aromas. Silky mouthfeel. Light malt profile. Lightly hopped. Very yeasty and bready. The taste of the high alcohol is muted by the spicy malty notes. Very nicely balanced. A good beer.

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Photo of BeerHonky
4.42/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

750ml bottle, corked and caged. Poured into my small Piraat goblet. Pours a wonderful shade of brown with nice ruby highlights hidden within. Big fluffly white head that dissipated to a nice glass coating lace. BIG hints of dark fruit here particularly raisins and dates soaked in a bit of alcohol. Underneath that I found a faint, buttery malt sweetness aroma. This beer smells really big! To my surprise, it did not taste very big...meaning that it hid its palatable alcohol pretty well. On top of the raisiny flavor I also got a nice refreshing apple taste. Also present is a subtle caramel malt backbone with little bits of butterscotch here and there. This is super tastey. Normally I'd think carbonation would be weird in a beer like this, but the bubbles are very smooth and enhance the creamy mouthfeel which leaves behind a pleasant sweetness that is not sticky. And finally, this beer will kick you to the curb if you're not careful...it hides the booze extremely well.

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Photo of MrBen
4.85/5  rDev +15.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

I picked up a bottle of this fine stuff a few days ago. I was pleased to find an opaque bottle, but what was inside was far more impressive. Gulden Draak poured nicely and kept a head between 1/8-1/4" all the way to the bottom of the glass. The beer's color was very appealing and the smell invited curiousity. The tastes were a bit surprising at first, and frankly, at 10.5%, I wasn't sure what awaited.

Anyway, the flavors were big, round, and complex. Lots of floral notes with some candy in there and maybe a tiny hint of pink peppercorns (try a whole pink peppercorn on its own -- it's nothing like black pepper), and just everything sweet in between. The mouthfeel pretty much made the experience for me. The beer was thick, not chewy necessarily, but I could almost sense the presence of two viscosities or thicknesses in there. Very exciting. The beer left a very light coating in my mouth that quickly dissolved between sips, and the aftertaste was probably the most pleasant I'd ever had -- and long lasting.

I agree with other reviews that this beer may be best enjoyed after a big meal, as a dessert. While I don't think its big flavor would detract from a good steak or grilled burger, I do believe that the mix just might not fit too well. I strongly recommend Gulden Draak to anyone -- both the newcomers to Belgians and the guys who are knee deep in the rich traditions. What a fantastic beer.

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Photo of audiojon
3.91/5  rDev -6.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A solid brew, the 10.5% abv is not noticeable at all. Nice appearance, dark ruby w/ beautiful lacing. Aroma is good, not great, but inviting. Taste is solid, but nothing shocking. Not extremely complex, I've come to expect more from Belgians than this has to offer. I'd drink it again, but would probably gravitate towards other Belgians when given a choice.

Worth a try, I could see it being a favorite for some.

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Photo of minnesotaryan
4.16/5  rDev -1%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Appearance: Pours a deep dark amber with a lot of cream colored foam on top of it.

Smell: Sweet dark fruit, yeast and alcohol.

Taste: Caramel malt, dark cherry, the yeast provides some spice, very sweet, very complex, a nice alcohol burn is ever present.

Mouthfeel: medium mouth feel, not too heavy and not too thin. It lingers but not in a bad way.

Overall: This is a wonderfully complex beer, very much a sipper. I do not think I could drink these every day, but when the opportunity arises, this is a great beer for sharing with friends.

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Photo of Blindpigbiz
3.77/5  rDev -10.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Smell: clean spring water

Taste: bitter hops with a rich, herbal, malty sweetness that carries throughout; subtle toasted walnuts pervade during each sip

This is one of the funkiest tripels Belgium has produced. Normally tripels have either a clementine, orange, or at least another citrus fruit within the flavor of the beer, but with the golden dragon not a one. This beer caught me off guard and I'm down to try it soon. By the way, This beer goes very well with an Italian sub with heavy mayo and oil

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Photo of DPJ3322
4.51/5  rDev +7.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.75

Poured into a snifter to enjoy this guy.

Appearance - I had no idea what the color would be, I expected a trippel for some reason, came out rich but not dark brown, very pretty. However, the head bubbled away very fast.

Smell - Boozy initially in the smell followed by a very subtle and nice fruit sweetness.

Taste - Boozy up front again, I get hints of fruit and raisins followed by a kind of muted sweetness, with apples lingering on my tongue for the aftertaste. Very complex and subtle, I like it.

Mouthfeel - Heavy carbonated fizz up front and it gets kind of viscous as it sits on the tongue.

Overall - I really like this beer and I am savoring my bottle, it was well worth the money spent on it. I like the complex layering present in taste, smell and mouthfeel. Once again, a great beer, very European.

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Photo of Rocko
3.65/5  rDev -13.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Nice and foamy head with big bubbles that settles fast on the copper colored liquid. Leaves a little lace on top. Big and fruity smell that reminds me of raisins. The taste is very rich, sweet and fruity. However I think the taste is a bit too sticky sweetish and it reminds me alot of sherry. :l

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Photo of greg202stewart
3.85/5  rDev -8.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

For the price I was expecting more. It was dark brown with little head and came out like liquid caramel. It went down smooth unfortunately, like caramel it was way too sweet and reminded me of a Sam Adams Seasonal. It is very unique though. Just not my bag baby!

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Photo of wjimson
4.07/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Opened and poured the 330ml bottle dated best before 08/06/07. Slighly dark brown colour with lots of head. The smell is of sweet wheat with a light trace of alcohol. The initial taste is of a sugar like sweetness. This is followed by plunge of slightly smokey raisiny taste. The aftertaste is slightly bitter and quite tart, a tartness similar to the white layer of Brie cheese. The alcohol taste is well camouflaged, but its definately there. I wished I hadn't knew that this beer had 10.5% alcohol content before I tried it.

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Photo of Elendinn
4.24/5  rDev +1%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Poured into my tulip glass.

Pours a cloudy, dark, earthy brown, suffused with a subtle crimson, with two-and-a-half fingers of off-white head, which leaves a bit of sticky lacing that hangs around for about half the glass -- aesthetically pleasing and rather foreboding.

The nose is sweeter than I'd expected, with lots of dark fruit (cherries feature rather prominently) beneath a huge aroma of molasses, caramel, alcohol, some chocolate, and bread. Smells a bit like freshly baked cookies and hard liquor -- very enticing.

Again, lots of molasses and caramel, a bit of milk chocolate, some mildly-tart dark fruits (reiteration of cherries), and bread are featured predominantly, in rough chronological order, on the tongue. The alcohol is a bit overbearing (reminiscent of Irish whiskey); combined with the yeasty doughyness, the finish is substantially drier than the front-end. The flavors begin to meld more cohesively as the glass warms, becoming progressively more balanced. What's most intriguing is the beer's similarity to a barleywine, but with a Belgian twang.

The first thing I notice upon letting this beer sit in my mouth is the carbonation, which, in a word, is excessive; additionally, the body is a bit chewy. It's difficult to hold for very long and it burns a little on the way down. The mouthfeel is an unfortunate distraction from an otherwise very good beer. Luckily, the carbonation becomes less exhuberant and more tolerable as the glass warms.

Gulden Draak is a delicious beer, but a slow starter, and an even slower sipper. I would recommend letting it warm up a bit before partaking with any sort of diligence. The noticeable alcohol and aggressive effervescence make it a difficult beer to drink more than one of, but it definitely grows on you. It reminds me of Hair of the Dog's Adam, with a little more complexity, a lot more carbonation, and a slightly heftier price tag (though both are great values). Bottom-line: it's strong and a little scary, but I'll get it again.

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Photo of wowbagger
4.03/5  rDev -4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Heck of a lot of head on this one! Beautiful amber/brown color and a slightly spicy aroma. The spiciness continues from the front of the tongue to the back of the throat and the flavor sticks with you for a while without changing into an odd aftertaste. I think 'warming' is the best way to describe how it feels in the mouth. This is a beer to be enjoyed slowly in front of a hot fire.

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Photo of ledemie
4.33/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Deep brown in color with ruby highlights.

I detected lemon, raisin, and spiciness. Some alcohol as it warms more.

fruity malt esters with a peppery dry finish leaving hints of biscuit in the mouth

This is dangerously drinkable for such a potent bere. Full bodied and smooth, with just the gentlest of warming sensations from the alcohol.

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Photo of Torps
3.9/5  rDev -7.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Pours a dark plum with two finger off white head.. some lacing.. aroma is dark fruits, candi sugar, prunes, spices and yeast.. taste is super sweet and heavy.. lots of dark fruit, dates, black cherry, spices and boozy alcohol. Mouthfeel is pretty good with plenty of carbonation to combat the sweetness. Drinkability is okay. Its a bit too boozy and sweet to drink more than one.

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Photo of kurtissellen
4.23/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Poured into an oversized wine glass producing two fingers worth of light brown head. It looked a dark brown color that turned more reddish along the edges. Aroma of dark fruits, sweetness and a little alcohol. Had a funney taste to it up front that wasn't too appealing almost like body odor but after that the slightly sweet fruits like figs and grapes kicked in. Had a nice feel to it, not too much carbonation and alcohol wasn't too noticeable.

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Photo of sprinkle
4.03/5  rDev -4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

The golden dragon does live up to its rep. Beautiful bright copper/red. Good nose you can tell its going to be rich.Pour slowly cause this beer gives you a nice head no matter how you pour it.Rich and malty taste,slight toffee and sweetness.Nice balance,great for dessert.

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Photo of goodbyesoberday
3.7/5  rDev -11.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours with a very loud head that subsides to a thin layer.

Rich dark red maple colour, opaque thanks to my pouring of all and everything into the glass.

It's rich, very rich. Chocolate coated fruit, I'll get back to you on the particulars someday. Dark brown sugar but no burnt toffee. The alcohol steps up and says hello. Very fiery but the dragon's breath hath no boot polish.

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Photo of JMforman
4.05/5  rDev -3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

I wasn't real impressed with the first beer that I had from Brouwerij Ban Steenberge (their Dubbel), but this one was great.

A- Big head with a deep amber body and good retention.

S- Very earthy: must, hay, alcohol, cherries

T- Alcohol, cherries, dark fruit, and bready malt up front with burnt sugar/ molasses filling the middle, and then a bitter finish

M- Very coating with a medium to full feel

D- Oh yes.

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Photo of WoogityBoogity
4.38/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A - Deep amber colored body with very light haze. Creamy tan head that leaves strong lacing and slow to dissipate.

S - Somewhat complex malt smell. Fruit esters comprise the middle palate and a light spicy phenol character compliments it. Very soft alcohol scent.

T - Moderately sweet from malt at initial taste. Middle flavors of light esters and mild spice phenols give strong complexity. A very light bitter finish exists, but balance is definitely toward sweetness. Alcohol and spice phenols create a smooth blend to the palate.

M - Medium body with high carbonation. Warming sensation from ABV is noticable, but not overpowering.

D - Complex, smooth, and blended flavors make you want to experience more.


One of classic Belgian Strong Dark Ale examples.

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Photo of MikeGill
3.82/5  rDev -9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

330ml bottle poured into a Duvel glass.

Dark burnished copper with a big beige head that has very good retention. Somewhat cloudy. Sweet on the nose with aromas reminiscent of lemon tea. I also smelled a little grenadine syrup as well.

Sweet and a little yeasty. Sour cranberry and grape flavors up front then some orange and a tiny bit of ripe banana. Big caramel malt and mellow spicy hops. Alcohol is right out there but for some reason still seems very balanced. Finishes with some toffee.

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Photo of Arthuros
4.3/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.25

Great dark blonde triple, with a honeyish taste and a strong sweetness. Strong ABV, strong taste, little happiness.
Quite refreshing if cold, gets heavy if warm quickly, avoid pints.

A great beer though, probably goes well with cheese.

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Photo of luvND
4.78/5  rDev +13.8%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Bottle: 330 ml white bottle, attractive package, golden dragon on label

Appearance: Best, thickest head retention that I have ever seen. Beautiful dark brown color.

Smell: Sweet, brown sugar, caramel, some ripe fruit and a hint of the alcohol.

Taste: I drank this first on its own and it was very nice, sweet, nice malt, all Belgian. Then I had it with some turkey sausage and what a pairing, sweetness complemented the spice so well. Finally, I finished it with desert, coffee ice cream and hot fudge and I think it was the best match of the evening. The slightly bitter coffe ice cream with the rich hot fudge brought out flavors in the beer that I hadn' t yet tasted.

Mouthfeel: As smooth and rich as possible. Not too thick though.

Drinkability: Scary at 10+%

Overall: A friend gave me this one. Never heard of it. Now I will confidently rank it as one of the best beers that I have ever tasted, Belgian or other.

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Photo of velo343
4.12/5  rDev -1.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance - A deep amber, slight crimson, with a thick, beige head that really sticks to the sides of the glass.

Smell - Bready, caramel and a chalky yeast aroma. Some fruity esters, golden raisins and a bit of spiciness. Really pleasing.

Taste - A strong yeast taste at the finish. There is a peppery spiciness and some phenols that come through the sweet maltiness. Some alcohol is there in the mix.

Mouthfeel - The beer is quite thick and syrupy, like honey, but really finishes quite dry.

Drinkability - A good beer that has a lighter body than the color implies. A great match to Indian food and other foods with a bit of spice.

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Gulden Draak (Dark Triple) from Brouwerij Van Steenberge N.V.
94 out of 100 based on 1,270 ratings.