1. American Craft Beer Fest returns to Boston on May 29 & 30, featuring 640+ beers from 140+ brewers. Tickets are on sale now.

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.
BA SCORE
94
outstanding

3,355 Ratings
THE BROS
98
world-class

(view ratings)
Ratings: 3,355
Reviews: 1,251
rAvg: 4.24
pDev: 11.56%
Wants: 212
Gots: 453 | FT: 4
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:
Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 12-19-2001

No notes at this time.
View: Beers (83) | Events
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | Likes | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Gulden Draak (Dark Triple) Alström Bros
Ratings: 3,355 | Reviews: 1,251 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of KeefD
4.32/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a dark brown with hints of amber, decent amount of foam in the snifter that goes away quickly, leaving no lacing. Smell is super sweet, grassy, and slightly herbal. Taste is ultra-malty, slightly fruity, with hints of dark fruits (plums, raisins) and roasted malts. Good mouthfeel, very high carbonation gives this one a nice body. A good BSDA.

Photo of bbothen
3.87/5  rDev -8.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

11.2 oz into a Piraat snifter.

A - Gusher upon opening but pours a nice rust/brown color with an airy 2 finger head. Nice soapy lace that sticks to glass.

S - Smells sweet, but not overly. Raisins, apple cider, fruity. Very nice.

T - Spicy flavors nicely balanced with the sweet malt & fruit flavors. A bit sour as well, but you may have to look for it. Caramel as well. I likey.

M - Somewhat biting from the carbonation. Still nicely smooth & dry finish.

D - A nice take your time and enjoy it beer. The carbonation would make this a " 2 in a sitting beer" for me. 10.5%. Duh.

This is a fine beer. If you haven't tried it, well, you should. One of the better Belgian strong style brews out there.

Photo of yemenmocha
4.21/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

Pours dark brown with light brown head.

Nose has aromas of dark cherry, dark chocolate, and fresh baked brownbreads.

On the palate the body is simply creamy & full, with enough zippy carbonation to keep it interesting. Dark fruits come through as expected, raisins, maybe fig newtons, and some sweet bready flavors too.

Finish is creamy soft and rather sweet.

Photo of dstc
4.63/5  rDev +9.2%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Pours a dark ruby color with a big, full off-white head. Great head retention and lacing.

Smells sweet and malty.

Yummy. So smooth and malty. Real full malt flavor with a nice sweetness that balances so well. Tastes of malt, chocolate or maybe caramel, a bit herbal.

In the mouth feels full bodied with a pleasant alcohol bite.

Love it, love it. On of my favorites, a damn fine beer.

Photo of generallee
4.23/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Presentation: It was poured from a white painted 330ml or 11.2oz bottle into a tulip glass.

Appearance: It is a dark hazy liquid that is a deep mahogany color with an abundance of small bubbles that form a thick head. The head is light tan in color and has great retention time.

Smell: The aroma has a sweet and fruity character with yeast and a definite alcohol presence.

Taste/Mouth feel: Up front I get a light sting of tart fruit, sour cherry and yeast that quickly turns sweet and malty. More dark sweet fruits come out now like figs, raison and prune mixed with Belgian candy sugar. The alcohol starts to add some warmth and some herbal hops are detected as it heads to the finish were it turns fairly dry. It is well carbonated yet smooth and full bodied.

Notes: This is an excellent Belgian Strong Dark Ale with all the complexity and strength that I love in Belgian ales.

Photo of Nipitato
4.57/5  rDev +7.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Purchased a kick ass looking bottle at Julio's Liquors in Westborough, MA.

A: Deep amber hue with ruby highlights. Thick and moussy tann/off white head with good retention. Good clarity despite darkness. A good looking beer.

S: Boozy with some scotch like character. Some chocolate and butterscotch (though not diacetyl). Dark fruit esters - raisins come through strong. Spicy: clove, cinnamon, and allspice. This is a very good nose.

T: Boozy strong again with some scotch like character. Very sweet - butterscotch (again not diacetyl) carries through. Some bitterness at the end. The phenols in this beer are very prominent. Clove, cinnamon, and allspice all come to mind. The bitterness balances out the sweetness well.

MF: Full mouthfeel. Well carbonated. Slick and creamy. Alcohol warming present but not hot.

D,notes: A great sipping beer. Very well balanced with nice phenolic compliments.

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

On tap poured into a tulip glass

A: Dark brown coffee appearance. Heavily carbonated. A small brown head with some lacing that sticks around for the whole drink.

S: A orange citrus scent with some heavy malt scents (brown sugar).

T: Lots of malt flavor, some chocolate and caramel. Lots of sugar flavors, almost candy like. It was nothing I have tasted before, which may just be inexperience, or the beer may be that unique.

M: Oh so creamy, leaving a sweet, somewhat alcohol taste on the tongue, teeth and lips.

D: An extremely high ABV, but it is oh so good. Definitely a sit back and sip on beer, good for the winter.

Photo of OtisinAZ
4.76/5  rDev +12.3%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

As i am not a big fan of the Belgiums (too sweet) this triple was one hell of a surprise.
The pour - dark with a nice tan head that settled fairly quickly.
The taste - WOW!!! perfect balance of sweet with a caramel malt perfectly carbonated. Easy drinking and enjoyable.
The smell - slight nutty and candy left me wondering what I was in for. Turns out it was one of the finest beers I have ever had.

Photo of rye726
4.33/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

This dark triple pours a deep mahogany color with an active head that settles to a silky cover. Perhaps my nose if off, but I don't find much in the aroma department. Sweet candy malt, dark fruits and a collection of Belgian spices. The taste builds on what I found in the nose. Again an impressive malt structure with ripe berries, toffee, caramel and peppery alcohol. A crisp yet creamy body has a good feel. A well balanced brew considering the strength.

Photo of dreadnatty08
4.38/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours a cloudy, medium caramel color with a massive, well supported off-white head. Aroma is quite fruity with plenty of plum and raisin notes, caramel, minor clove phenols. On the palate, the incredibly highly carbonated brew brings a rush of bready, melanoiden rich fruits, spicy alcohol and finishes quite dry and clean driven still by the high carbonation. Quite the clean and complex beer, incredibly drinkable and quite enjoyable. I'd really check this one out again.

Photo of beerkittycat
4.12/5  rDev -2.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Appearane is a murky deep amber brown with a lingering frothy tan head. Malty aroma laced with essence of plum, cherry and very faint flowery hops. Taste is full of the same malty flavors of plum and cherry. Low hop flavor and bitterness takes a backseat to the malt flavors but complements nicely. Mouthfeel is bordering on chewy but not quite like a barelywine. Finish is slightly sweet and dry but not cloying. A beautiful beer all around.

Photo of BretSikkink
3.98/5  rDev -6.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

Dark brown color, infused with some lighter action around the edges. Head is a caramel color and is served at about one finger which recedes rather quickly, leaving larger soapy bubbles. Looks viscous. Very little lace, and no cap to speak of that remains.

The aroma is very malty, thick with sweetness and dark fruits, much like a date, or a fig with brown sugar. Slightly hot alcohol fumes as well. Plenty of aroma, not perfect but solid.

I'm afraid I don't understand the Golden Dragon name...it's not golden! Oh well. Flavor of thick, sugary dark ripe fruits, especially dates but also black cherry in a way. Lots of character, not terribly great.

Mouthfeel is thick, but doesn't feel sturdy enough for the best of the best. I enjoyed the goblet, but won't be clambering for another.

Photo of blackkristos
4.3/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A beautiful burgundy color with very little head (the tap was new, so I think the pour was exceptionally slow). Chocolate and malt smell, a bit of alcohol. Pretty typical taste for triples. Strong flavor, malty and caramel. Very satisfying mouthful. The alcohol is noticeable, but not over powering.

A very, very good beer. I do not imagine I would purchase a bottle, but for as long as it's available on tap, I will continue to order it.

Photo of MAB
3.67/5  rDev -13.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

What a let-down.

Loose foam, yellow-tan head. Lots of carbonation.
Color is quite dark, amber, but hazy.
Smell: alcohol, possibly willow?
Taste: VERY sweet. Mouthfeel full, light syrup consistency.
Sweetness dominates- hard to pick out other flavors; let it warm up a bit.
Now it's more of a brown sugar taste. Desperately needs hops for balance and contrasting flavor.

Not a starter beer, pretty good for a dessert beer but one is enough. Too sweet!

Photo of Gunnz
4.95/5  rDev +16.7%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Very nice dark burgandy in color with a decent caramel cream colored head.

Malty and chocoltey nose with a slight hint of hops.

Strong malty flavor with hints of caramel. Classic of strong ales.

Smooth yet heavy bodied, but enjoyable.

Very highly recommended. Definitely something I would drink again. Probably something I would want to save as a treat for myself to keep from having too much of a good thing too often.

Photo of Opethsprite
2.73/5  rDev -35.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 2

Written from notes...
Served in a bizzare, white bottle, the beer pours a muted hazelnut color with a thin head. The nose is sweet and orange, with raspberry and a metallic element. An initial bitterness to taste turns quickly into an ULTRA sweet bit, fading nicely into spices in the finish. Mouthfeel is medium-to-full, and with good carbonation. This beer is highly drinkable *IF* you can stomach that crazy sugar shock half-way through.

Photo of cyrenaica
4.5/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

330ml bottle
10.5% ABV

I tried this beer on December 28, 2007 at "Smokeless Joe's" in Toronto. The white bottle caught my eye. This beer poured a dark murky brown with a generous tan coloured head. The aroma was strongly yeasty with a fruit backdrop, possibly plums or raisins. The mouthfeel was medium bodied, and very champagny. The flavour was malty, yeasty, and slightly sour.

Photo of kurtissellen
4.23/5  rDev -0.2%
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.

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

I had this beer at Sharp Edge Creekhouse in Pittsburgh. Served cool in a Gulden Draak Goblet.

A - Deep Bronze w/ a 2 finger beige collar w/ a fined bead that makes sporadic lace

S - Belgian yeast w/ dark malt odors, biscuit and dark brown sugar w/ a very subtle boozy note and hints of fig in the nose

M- Roasted and dry gain in the feel w/ lively carbonation, subtle sweetness and spiced dry finish

T - Deep w/ candy sugar and gentle spice w/ a hint of vegetal, booze and maple-like woody notes and dark fruit - raisin, fig, and cherry notes w/ a pepper like spice and boozy filled cocoa and date-like candy flavors. The taste becomes smooth and creamy as it warms w/ a nut bread and boozy dark cherry w/ candy sugar accents.

D - I really enjoyed this Belgian strong ale. It was the first I remember having it on draft, but I have enjoyed it many times in bottled form. The balanced sweetness w/ dry alcoholic feel is just superb and I recommend it highly. This is well crafted and restrained for the high abv, A welcome ale to my tastebuds.

Photo of Slynger
4.38/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

Gulden Draak pours an elegant deep burgandy brown color with massive cap of light caramel colored fluff.

Wafts of dark fruity prunes, plums, and cherries drift into mellowly tart apples and wine, both of the red variety. Nice soft belgian yeasts round out a fine nose.

The body is medium-full. It is also full of a lush, tickling, fuzzy carbonation. Flavors of sweet and lightly bitter dark fruits with light caramel and butterscotch lean in to red wine and apples. Light belgian yeastiness massages the palate and fresh, sweet, cinnamony tobacco appears as it warms.

Absolutely delishious. This is the best BSDA I've had yet. Drink it warm and you'll have a satisfied grin on your warmly buzzing face by the time you are done.

Photo of donnebaby
3.5/5  rDev -17.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Dark brown, lively looking brew. Very bright. Loose but ample light brown head. Smells like candy sugar, molasses, and sweet vanilla. A dark tripel -- cool, why not. Pretty high residual bitterness over a mildly roasty, sweet and juicy flavor. The beer is surprisingly well balanced for 10.5%, with alcohol certainly being felt, but not tasted. Sweetness becomes a bit cloying. Too spritzy and boozy for me to want to enjoy more than one of these, but nice on a warm day fowsure.

Photo of PhageLab
3.48/5  rDev -17.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.5

Poured into a tulip glass.

A - Gorgeous deep ruby coloration with murky brown hints. Nice head of froth that rode the whole way down. Laced very well. Easily one of the most attractive brews I've seen in a while.

S - Alcohol hits first, but sifting past that a barrage of different fruits and nuts makes themselves known.

T - Apple and sugary malts seem to dominate the profile, which is consistently battling the alcohol taste for the spotlight. Slightly disappointing, I can't help but think this would be much more flavorful with a lower abv. Finishes sweet and fairly dry.

M - Full bodied, low carbonation level, pungent alcohol sting.

D - Small servings only please, the large bottle of this was difficult to finish, even sharing it with friends. It seems that Steenberge loves high alcohol brews, I just wish they'd make a session brew. They obviously have great talent, but does every beer need to be over 10%?

Photo of botham
4.05/5  rDev -4.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

11.2 oz squat bottle poured into a tulip. pours a dark copper/caramel color with garnet highlights and four fingers of light tan head that remains for a couple minutes. light lacings.

aroma is sweet and fruity, with a sour character that contains notes of grape and apple. a bready yeast aroma forms a base, while apricot and caramel round out the profile. nicely concentrated, with a good breadth of aromas.

taste is mildly sweet up front, with fruit notes of apple, grape and apricot, along with a notable alcoholic presence and a bready note on the back of the palate. finishes on an alcoholic note with residual apple, malt, and a touch of bittering hops.

mouthfeel is medium to full bodied with a sharp texture, due to CO2 levels and alcohol. finishes semi dry with soft CO2 on the way down. could be a bit smoother on the palate.

drinkability is good. this is a complex brew with many flavors and aromas, and a notable alcoholic tag. the richness of the profile makes this one more of a sipping brew. a very enjoyable belgian strong dark.

Photo of Patrick999
4.04/5  rDev -4.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

Dark triple, eh? My brother hooked me up with this before his wedding a few weeks ago - we were all sitting in the groom's staging area before the wedding, drinking Gulden Draak out of the bottle. Good times. Obviously I wasn't able to review it then, so I bought a 750ml bottle for a real review.

A - Poured into a chalice. Looks a little more innocent than most BSDAs; has a cola-like look to it. Head foams up a bit, then settles to a thin layer.

S - Massive hit of malt in the nose. Hot caramel on top of an ice cream sundae. Oh yeah, lots of spiced rum. Faint whiffs of alcohol.

T - I hope you like your malt. It's a malt bomb for the malt-heads out there. I'm sure there's a hop or two buried beneath, but it's just a formality. Dark fruits and a good bit of spice. Not as massively phenolic as I might have imagined. Very sweet...ultimately a bit too sweet for me, but it's still a hell of a brew.

F - Nice and light, belying the debauched monstrosity that is this beer.

D - While it feels light, the sweetness to me begins to get tiresome. A full 750ml is a bit much for one.

Photo of Pleepleus
3.97/5  rDev -6.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a bottle into a goblet. It had a deep reddish brown color and a creamy tan half inch head. Brown sugar was my first thought after smelling with some sweet malt and caramel hints. The taste was super sugary sweet caramel and maple flavor with hints of berries and a warm alcohol feel as it goes down. The sweet creamy feel balances the carbonation and makes it smooth enough to have another. Reminds me of a dark Jamaican spiced rum.

Gulden Draak (Dark Triple) from Brouwerij Van Steenberge N.V.
94 out of 100 based on 3,355 ratings.