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

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

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BA SCORE
94
outstanding

3,275 Ratings
THE BROS
98
world-class

(view ratings)
Ratings: 3,275
Reviews: 1,228
rAvg: 4.24
pDev: 11.56%
Wants: 200
Gots: 392 | 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:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 12-19-2001)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 3,275 | Reviews: 1,228 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of Jordantb313
4.25/5  rDev +0.2%

Photo of irv2424
4.25/5  rDev +0.2%

Photo of MaximalC
3.59/5  rDev -15.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

Pours a stately, translucent plum color with a modest khaki head (courtesy of a moderate pour) that soon recedes. Not much lacing to speak of. Aroma has a complex sweetness consisting of dark fruit, grapes, pear, and brown sugar. Alcohol is also evident in the nose. The big malt sweetness is fully forward in the taste as well, along with a bit of cherry kick that accentuates the alcohol flavor (which isn't especially well concealed). Some apple skin also sneaks through in the finish, as does cinnamon after some warming. The sweetness is pronounced to the point of being cloying (there could be some straight-up candy sugar in there). Between the dark, sweet malt and big ABV, this almost evokes shades of Samiclaus, albeit not quite to that extreme. The Belgian yeast character adds some texture and complexity, but it's pretty muted for Belgian ale.

Overall, this is a massively sweet yet complex brew that demands sipping, and were it not for the bomber, I doubt I could have a second glass in succession. Not my favorite big Belgian ale.

*Addendum: To echo the advice of BuckeyeNation, do be sure to incorporate the sediment at the bottom of the bottle into the pour (especially with the bomber). The difference in balance is like night and day. The sweetness is tempered a great deal, thereby making this much more drinkable. I wish I would have known in advance, as my palate is probably pretty well skewed at this point, but the difference is hard to miss nonetheless.

Photo of rjholcomb
5/5  rDev +17.9%

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

Appearance: Pours a beautiful deep mahogany with reddish highlights. The beer was initially capped with a finger and a half of off-white foam for a head that quickly dissipated into a thin halo of foam that gripped the glass, and formed wispy clouds of foam over the center of the beer.

Aroma: Dried stone fruit like cherries and plums and raisins. Alcohol, but in a good way, like the way wine smells, but better. Malty, like freshly baked dark bread like a loaf of pumpernickel.

Taste: Fruity with the afore mentioned cherries, raisins and plums. Notes of spices like clove, allspice, cinnamon, vanilla. Some slight molasses sweetness to help round out the slightly sour notes of the Belgian yeast.

Mouthfeel: Chewy. Very, very chewy. Nicely carbonated, but the beer doesn’t cleanse the palate, rather it coast the mouth like velvet. At 10.5% ABV, you do taste and feel the alcohol, but in a good way!

Overall: Belgian strong dark ales are among my favorite styles of beers, the Gulden Draak is an exceptional example of such a beer. If you like Belgian quads and other strong dark ales, and haven’t tried the Gulden Draak yet, do yourself a favor and pick up a bottle. You won’t be disappointed.

Photo of JamesMN
3.75/5  rDev -11.6%

Photo of SoCalStout
4.25/5  rDev +0.2%

Photo of IHyphySF
3.75/5  rDev -11.6%

Photo of Metal4Breakfast
4.5/5  rDev +6.1%

Photo of mbw314
4/5  rDev -5.7%

Photo of beerbtl
4.75/5  rDev +12%

Photo of drrone
4/5  rDev -5.7%

Photo of 510a
4.25/5  rDev +0.2%

Photo of FrostyWPG
4/5  rDev -5.7%

Photo of jplopez21
4.25/5  rDev +0.2%

Photo of FlyingYeti
4/5  rDev -5.7%

Photo of Iowacraft
4/5  rDev -5.7%

Photo of ste5venla
4.5/5  rDev +6.1%

Photo of Hellmeh
4.5/5  rDev +6.1%

Photo of themegamancave
4.25/5  rDev +0.2%

Photo of RichardMNixon
4.5/5  rDev +6.1%

Photo of jpro
4.03/5  rDev -5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

11.2oz bottle poured into a Chimay glass...

A: Ruby-tinged amber, with about a half finger of fizzy almond head; a steady stream of bubbles rises up through the murkiness to support a creamy layer of foam; no lace on this 10.5% ale.

S: Dark fruits with some touches of alcohol; figs; molasses; toast; notes of toffee. A lot of interesting nuances in the aroma.

T: Interesting flavors, right off the first sip: raisin, a touch tangy / vinous; quite sweet with some alcohol towards the end.

M: Full bodied; high, tingly carbonation; very lively; a touch of alcohol heat.

O: An interesting beer; glad I tried it; very smooth and drinkable at 10.5%.

Photo of ThePaintedGrey
3.93/5  rDev -7.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 3.75

11.2oz bottle poured into tulip glass.

A: Dark and lovely. Almost like a milk chocolaty hue of brown, with hints of ruby red shining through as it's held to the light. Huge frothy head, three-fingers in size at first, beige in color, sits atop this looker of a beer. Head eventually dwindles down to about one finger in size. Retains at this size for the remainder. Beige lacing remains all down the glass.

S: Dark fruits apparent immediately. Maybe raisin or plum. Chocolaty sweetness. Hints of toffee and spice underneath. Alcohol faintly tingles in the back of the nostrils upon second or third sniff. Not surprising, given the alcohol content.

T: Beer was a tad too cold upon first sip, but a lovely sweet chocolate character hits the palette for me right away. As I let the beer sit (this one is a sipper for sure) to warm up a hair, more complex notes start to shine through. The sweet Belgian candy flavors start to mix with the peppery alcohol. This beer has a very (gourmet) dessert-like flavor profile.

M: Full-bodied, the creaminess of the head mixed in give this beer an almost syrupy feel. Mild carbonation throughout. Devastatingly smooth for a beer with 10.50% ABV.

O: While this beer is certainly a treat on occasion, there's just something about it that left me overall yearning for more. Maybe it was the hype surrounding it that clouded my judgment? Nevertheless, this beer is a nice change of pace compared to my usual choices. Complexly flavored, full-bodied, smooth brew, and kind of dangerous because it doesn't drink like a strong ale. It's just not something I'd write home about; it straddles the line between good and exceptional, but falls more along the lines of good.

Photo of ridgeline23
4/5  rDev -5.7%

Photo of Chingringo
5/5  rDev +17.9%

Gulden Draak (Dark Triple) from Brouwerij Van Steenberge N.V.
94 out of 100 based on 3,275 ratings.