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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.

3,326 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 3,326
Reviews: 1,243
rAvg: 4.24
pDev: 11.56%
Wants: 210
Gots: 432 | 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.
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 3,326 | Reviews: 1,243 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of farrago
4.7/5  rDev +10.8%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Rich brown color with an orange tinge closer to the rims, large frothy head that refuses to dissolve, strong visible bubbles. While there's caramel and chocolate in the nose at the same time it's malty with a sour edge, dried black fruits, muscular in a sinewy way, not heavy in spite of overall sweetness. In the mouth it shows sufficient carbonation to relieve excess weight. Caramel, butterscotch, raisins, grapes and cinnamon, nutmeg spice. Orange marmalade citrus accents. Relentless presence, this is a beer that does not want to be washed out of your palate.

Photo of bowersdm
4.75/5  rDev +12%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

33cL bottle poured into a...some type of glass.

A - cloudy ruby color, like apple cider, nice thick head. good lacing

S - hops, spice, fruit, malt

T - caramel malt, fruit, spice, hops and more fruit, no alcohol taste at all.

M - smooth

D - this beer is wayyy too easy drinking for a 10% ABV beer.

Photo of Fnord
4.47/5  rDev +5.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance - Pours reddish-black, with an dense, off-white head.

Smell - Very complex! Alcohol, bitter chocolate, licorice, brown sugar and yeast. I'm sure there's a ton of other aromas I'm missing as well.

Taste - It has that distinctive Belgian yeast taste. The alcohol makes itself known as well. The bitter chocolate comes out to play, with the licorice and brown sugar following timidly behind. Hops are also present, though just enough to keep the alcohol in balance.

Mouthfeel - Medium mouthfeel, with fairly brisk carbonation.

Drinkability - It's too strong to drink a lot of, but that's fine. One at the end of the night is plenty.

Notes - Wow, this one's good. It's hard to overstate that. This one may give Trois Pistoles and Brasserie de l'Abbaye des Rocs Grand Cru a run for their money for my favorite Belgian Strong Dark.

Photo of HeyItsChili
3.61/5  rDev -14.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A - Poured from a bottle into a tulip glass. Pours brownish amber with a booming, big tan head that won't die.

S - Raisins, alcohol, malt.

T - Very earthy, malty, a little burnt caramel, raisins, figs. Lots of pepper and spice. The finish is powerfully alcoholic.

M - Medium bodied, a little silky, with some carbonation in the mix.

Notes - There's sort of an extremely earthy quality of the beer that clashes with the strong alcohol finish that just doesn't quite do it for me.

Photo of abents
4.16/5  rDev -1.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Pours reddish brown really deep red when held to lgiht. A light white head not much lacing. Smells fruity, sweet, belgian candy like aroma. Big taste of figs and raisins with that belgian bready-yeast flavor in there as well. Very smooth beer with little to no detection of the alcohol. The slight sweetness hides it well. Overall not too bad, but not a standout, one I would have again.

Photo of Hojaminbag
4.42/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured into a Gulden Draak glass.

The color of both the body and head of this beer are rather pretty. The body is a deep amber color that has hues of scarlet, and is a little darker but similar and as deep as blood. The tan, caramel colored head is rather large and has pretty good retention. Not a whole lot of lacing here though.

There is a slight tartness in the aroma, a sour cherry type if smell. Also a sugary sweetness.

A pretty big sweetness is the first flavor. Notes of candied sugar but also dark fruits like raisin and cherry. Next comes a moderate tartness that I always find very pleasant in a BSDA. In conjunction with the other characteristics in here the tartness tastes like a sour cherry flavor. The beer finishes and the flavor rounds out with a toffee or butterscotch taste. As it warms, I notice a little heat from the alcohol.

Medium bodied with some decent carbonation. A little lighter body than I would expect. Slight warming sensation from the alcohol.

This is a drinkable beer. I had no idea the ABV was so high, I definitely would have guessed it to be around 8% instead 10.5. All around a good beer, a nice representation of a Belgian Strong Dark Ale.

Photo of Hunter
4.53/5  rDev +6.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

appearance: Pillowy, thick head of dense bubbles atop a dark, nearly black-red ruby brew. Proper lacing all around.

smell: Heady notes of alcohol, sweet malt, smoke, and spice.

taste: Holy crap, the heat of alcohol blends with a fruity, floral, peppery tongue that'll set you up and knock you back. 10.5% ABV I would expect nothing less. THIS is what a winter warmer should be about and rarely is - warming, smooth, and clean.

mouthfeel: scouring on the initial taste, then mellowing to a smoothness akin to a fine brandy. Can you tell I'm pleased?

drinkability: This is something I'd almost recommend a brandy glass for. Lovely.

Photo of Lexluthor33
4.45/5  rDev +5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Dark reddish brown with a small,bubbly head that retains quite well.
The aroma of grains,malts, dark fruits and alcohol.
The taste starts sweet with some caramel hints and a fruit flavor.
Grapes,candy apples and malts follow. A spicy brew,but well balanced.
It had a medium body feel with medium carbonation. I detected some yeast and the alcohol was very well placed. Better as it warms,but good even when chilled.

Notes: This was such a pleasure to have I just wished I had the words to describe the complexity. A stand out beer with a stand out bottle.

Photo of nd5282
3.82/5  rDev -9.9%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A carmel cloudy appearance that expels notes of coffee and chocolate. Crisp and bold at the first sip followed by a sweet and smooth sugary finish. This beer was very easy to drink and full of flavor, the only problem that I had with the "Golden Dragon" was that it became a bit too sweet for my palate towards the end.

Photo of weeare138
4.05/5  rDev -4.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Appears a dark crimson toned orange with a light tan head that slowly fades out into a mild cap that floats during the duration of the drink. Scattered bits of webbing are left around the entire glass.
Smell is of ripe, dark fruit, raisins, cocoa, and some herbal, earth notes.
Taste is of caramel, dark fruit, steeped raisins, and herbal, spicy hops.
Mouthfeel is sweet, syrupy, hot, spicy, and smooth in the finish.

Photo of LOCAL
3.8/5  rDev -10.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

330ml into wine goblet

Appearance: Pours a dark brown/ruby red with a half inch of light tan head which disappears quickly.

Aroma: Big on ripe fruit, apple, plum.

Taste: A Golden Delicious Apple taste comes through real stong, followed by raisin, brown sugar and yeast. Alcohol is very well hidden.

Mouthfeel: Medium bodied, smooth and creamy. Well carbonated.

Overall: Easy to drink, well balanced. Could have a few of these, but the ABV could prevent having too many.

Photo of Beernoisseur
4.48/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

A - Beautiful burnt orange, brown with a 2 inch head that hangs around forever.

S - Fruity, floral esters. Loads of sweetness. Cirtusy hops come through in the background.

T - Sweet, warm, malty and hoppy, With a load of fruits. Cherries, berries, and various other sweet fruits shine through like crazy. After that, there are the citrus notes of the hops. Amazing.

M - Wonderful smoothness. Sweet, and rounded

D - This beer is so delicious, I would want to drink a ton of them, but at 10.5% it's hard to put down more than one or two.

Photo of SickBrew
4.35/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from 33 0ml bottle into a wine class. This brew pours a deep hazy brown with loads of tan head. Head retention is quite good and leaves some really good lacing. Nose is malty sweet, slightly sour and has some some faint esters.

Taste is slightly reminiscent of barlywine. Like the nose, a well balanced plate of sweet malts, tartness, mild hops and warm alcohol slide right over the tongue in every sexy, silky smooth sip.

Body is full and the carbonation right on for the style. Overall this is a great Belgian Ale that I will be enjoying again.

Photo of erosier
3.93/5  rDev -7.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

L: Pours a deep amber-brown with red tints with a huge tan colored head that laces the glass very nicely on the way down as it fades slowly.
S: Smells of sweet roasted malts, hints of caramel, vinous fruit, then a big yeast aroma at the end.
T: Big sweetly roasted malts, some caramelized malt, vinous fruit, and a clean yeast taste at the end. I was expecting it to be harsher, but it was pretty good.
M: Very smooth, heavy, warming, with the right amount of carbonation. End has an alcoholic twinge to it.
D: Pretty drinkable. A lot of alcohol so it was a bit daunting, but a solid beer nonetheless.

Photo of TheManiacalOne
4.35/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

On-tap 12/28/08 at Doherty's East Ave Irish Pub in Pawtucket, RI, served in a tulip glass.

A: The beer is a dark reddish brown color, with a short foamy off-white head that fades slowly and leaves a thick lace on the glass.

S: The aroma is of spices, cherries and other dark fruits, Belgian yeast and a touch of hops.

T: The taste is fruity and malty up front with flavors of cherries, Belgian yeast and caramel but it's not overly sweet. There's a hearty but not too heavy malt character and a mild but complimentary hops presence that provide a good balance. The after-taste is tart and slightly sweet.

M: Crisp and very smooth, medium body, medium carbonation, finish is clean for the style.

D: Tasty, goes down dangerously easily, not too filling, strong kick, good representation of style, this beer takes flavors that I don't normally like and used them well to make the beer quite pleasurable to drink.

Photo of Chinon01
3.99/5  rDev -5.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 3

Appearance - Maple syrup color with thin wispy head.

Nose - Buttered toast, maple, malt, candied, and a little spice.

Taste - Similar to nose with more heightened spice and candy. Wonderfully long ashy Belgian yeasty, mouth puckering finish. A real lip licker.

Mouthfeel & Drinkability - Mouthfeel is great due to the roundness complimented by the mouth pucking acidity. Drinkability suffers due to style which is substantial.

Photo of cvfish
4.6/5  rDev +8.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

A - Poured a dark amber color that produced a fluffy light tan head that laced around the glass nicely

S - Brown sugar, dried plums, red grapes, and yeasts

T - Tastes like maple and brown sugar oatmeal, with raisins and plums mixed in with hops and malts

M - Smooth and creamy medium bodied with light carbonation

D - Great beer, beautiful example of why people love beer....I can't fully express, but its wonderful

Photo of 1fastz28
5/5  rDev +17.9%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

got this in a belgian mix a six pack, and holy crap if the other 5 are this good, i'm going to go nuts.

its just a 5 across, no question about it

has a beautiful deep amber color and a nice head, and a big head

smell is wonderful, taste is wonderful, its just a fantastic beer. has a strong alcohol bite to it with a myriad of spicy yeast flavors

mouthfeel is a thicker more syrupy type

and as far as drinkability to it, i just wish i had bought more, its awesome

Photo of aeminter
4.15/5  rDev -2.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Dark rich amber with constant effervescence, creamy beige head and good lacing.
Smells of dates and spice.
The taste reminds me a little of barley wine. Malty...full-bodied...little bitterness.
This is in no way a chugging beer. This ale needs to be savored.

Photo of kaseydad
4/5  rDev -5.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I bought this beer after seeing and hearing my buddy's raves about it. Sweet looking white bottle and who doesn't like a dragon...or serpent. Whatever it is, it's cool! I like the feel of the bottle too. The white coating is a nice change to the standard bottle. From reading the label I didn't think this would come out dark for a Belgie but to my surprise it is.

Major bubbly head that has major clinging to the glass issues. Fruity aroma with a nice dark caramal appearance. The taste is a little different than what I expected. I am partial to "original" Belgian beers taste so I can honestly say I am not digging this as much. My palate just prefers the lighter "apple" taste of non-dark Belgie's.

I would probably not buy this again but I would happily receive and drink it if it appears under the X-mas tree this year. Santa?

Photo of GratefulBeerGuy
4.09/5  rDev -3.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

11.2 oz. sample, white-frosted bottle > Chimay goblet. Part of the global Beer Network variety 6-pack.

A deep, deep amber color, very bright, decent carbonation, seems a bit mellow creating a scattered, tan-colored head that doesn't prove to be as impressive as some dark-Blgians, the dissipation is a bit quick with only slightly sticky lacing.

The nose is very aromatic with big, sweet fruits, dates and fermented red grapes, brown sugar, liqorice, blakc pepper and a earthy yeasgt to finish.

The malt is full of dark-fruity flavors and big-time sweetness of oakie caramel, maple syrup, herbal, earthy balance of belgian yeast and hops. Still, this is dominated by sweet, fruity flavor's. Raisins, dates, black berries, all very bold but the balance is a bit off, and not that well-rounded.

The feel is crispy, but a very hefty body feel, smooth and slick with long, cloying finish, dry after-feeling.

Medium complexity with a strange balance, but it's got flavor!

Photo of meday
4.55/5  rDev +7.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a short bottle into my Allagash tulip

Dark brown with a reddish hue. From the van Steenberge 6-pack mix I bought, this was the only beer that felt adequately carbonated and delivered a beautiful head.

It smelled of brown sugar and plum. Very inviting.

Deep, beautifully sweet first taste. It was nicely balanced, with caramel and plum overtones. After a couple sips, the sweetness mellowed, and the more earthy and rich tones emerged. I am eating a soft sheep's milk cheese with this, and herbal cream becomes much more prominent in the cheese. Not even a hint of alcohol. Brilliant.

Rich and statisfying in the mouth, with a complete finish.

Drinkability...is it gone already???

This is great as an appetizer with cheese, as the caramel sweetness paired great with a soft sheep's or goat's milk cheese.

Photo of hustlesworth
3.51/5  rDev -17.2%
look: 2.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

A- loose airy beige head was completely unexpected, full of bubbles and fizzily active. settles rather quickly with a few spots of lace left behind. body is clear and dark rosewood color with a burgundy tint. still a little disappointed with the foam, but it easily rebuilds itself (with better texture) with a good swirl of the tulip.

S- sticky sweet dark fruits and dark cane sugar. apple, cherry, plum, red grape, and a touch of fruity alcohol esters. caramel and toffee come out also with an earthy graininess. some spiciness from the yeast, allspice, & peppercorn, sandalwood, vanilla, acetone, and what may be noble hops.

T- at first it's almost sickly sweet until a fresh grain taste pushes in and begins to balance things out a little. a bit metallic also, my overall impression is plums figs dates and raisins soaked in cognac and a ridiculous amount of candy sugar. almost overly sweet for may taste on the front half but mid way zesty hop flavor and alcohol bitterness cut through somewhat. port wine, wood, and soil, earthy hops, and dark chocolate undertones. yeast spiciness here as well, but it seems be disguised by alcohol and sweetness. earthy and sharp bitter finish with still some more fresh grain taste lingering on the palate.

MF- rich and full, the candy sugar has definitely pumped up the body to stellar proportions. almost stout thick, mouth filling with tight medium carbonation, sadly a filmy coating of cloying sugary sludge remains.

D- i am totally on the fence with this damn beer. i'm not a man with a sweet tooth, so naturally the sweeter things don't appeal to me as much, but as many pros as this beer has for me, it has an equal amount of cons. potency being the least of my concerns, the sugary sweetness seems to drown out other subtle flavors and i would gladly trade the high abv for something a bit more...nuanced. or should i say, something that allows the nuances to be appreciated.

Photo of Overlord
4/5  rDev -5.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Have no idea why I haven't tried this before now. I've seen it enough times!

Pours a bubbling dark brown with a tan head. Smells ... like brown sugar, Belgian candi, and sweet dark fruits.

Taste is overwhelmingly sweet. Like, a Belgian candi bomb. There'a yeasty breadiness to it, as well. Brown sugar, candi, dark fruits ... it's a sugar bomb. I enjoyed it quite a bit. Mouthfeel was nicely chewy.

Photo of jwinship83
3.51/5  rDev -17.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

750 ml bottle with no visible date.

A- hazy dark brown colored bottle with a gushing 3 finger head that quickly reduces to a thin layer on the surface. moderate lacing left on the sides of the glass.

S- sweet malts and yeast are the main things i notice first. also some fruits. apples and pears mostly. smells moderately alcoholic.

T- very sweet upfront. lots of yeast and the fruits i could smell. decent amount of alcohol in the finish.

M- extremely light and fizzy from high level of carbonation

D- had some trouble finishing this one. its not that i hated it, its just that 750 is too big. next time ill go with the smaller 330ml. certainly not my favorite for this style.

Gulden Draak (Dark Triple) from Brouwerij Van Steenberge N.V.
94 out of 100 based on 3,326 ratings.