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Raison D'Être - Dogfish Head Brewery

Not Rated.
Raison D'ÊtreRaison D'Être

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4,090 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 4,090
Reviews: 1,767
rAvg: 3.66
pDev: 15.3%
Wants: 72
Gots: 283 | FT: 5
Brewed by:
Dogfish Head Brewery visit their website
Delaware, United States

Style | ABV
Belgian Strong Dark Ale |  8.00% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes/Commercial Description:
A deep mahogany, Belgian-style brown ale brewed with beet sugar, raisins and Belgian-style yeast.

25 IBU

(Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 08-09-2001)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 4,090 | Reviews: 1,767 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of teak
3/5  rDev -18%

teak, Jan 06, 2013
Photo of AleGal79
3.25/5  rDev -11.2%

AleGal79, Apr 25, 2012
Photo of mess41
3.75/5  rDev +2.5%

mess41, Jan 31, 2013
Photo of snowmg
3.75/5  rDev +2.5%

snowmg, Jul 10, 2013
Photo of Jeremy0682
2.25/5  rDev -38.5%

Jeremy0682, Jul 04, 2014
Photo of BrunEngr
4.25/5  rDev +16.1%

BrunEngr, Apr 06, 2014
Photo of goodonya
3.5/5  rDev -4.4%

goodonya, Sep 21, 2013
Photo of MarineHokie
4.03/5  rDev +10.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A - Clear deep mahogany. Head bubbles up to nearly 2F then quickly subsides to a thin cream colored ring, thin streams of bubble rise continuously.

S - Sugary malts mix with light vinious rose-like aromas.

T - Dark chocolate, dried fruit, and cola initially, lots of complex but cohesive flavors going on, then a light coffee-like bitterness on the finish.

M - Meduim heavy body is lightened somewhat by sparkling carbonation.

D - More easily quaffable than the traditional examples of the style. Would pair well with and/or adapt to many different dishes.

MarineHokie, May 15, 2006
Photo of tcfishler
4.13/5  rDev +12.8%
look: 2.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Dark but clear and bright brownish red, with a rapidly disappearing tan head.

Quite roasted nose, with deep, smoky malt. Just a little dried fruit and caramel is present to add complexity.

In the mouth, medium-bodied and round, with subtle sweetness. Ends pleasantly dry and mouthwatering.

Coming from a wine drinker, this is not a "winey" brew. Its roasted character and relatively low sweetness reminds me more of a porter than your typical Belgian. As such, I think it should have broad appeal among beer consumers, and not just among Belgian aficionados. This is definitely not one of Dogfish's extreme brews. As with all other DFH beers I've had, the alcohol is expertly concealed.

tcfishler, Dec 07, 2006
Photo of peck95
3.78/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

this beer is a dark copper color with a very thin head and a little bit of lacing
the aroma is of rum cake/ banana nut bread
has a nice earthy taste raisons, nuts, caramel, and bananas also a strong alcohol note
over carbonated and a big alcohol burn,
a solid beer that i would call a mood beer, good only when im in the mood for something a little bit different.

peck95, May 03, 2009
Photo of SteveS1
3.35/5  rDev -8.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Look- Deep rusty brown, transparent. Thin, frothy, tan head.

Smell- Sweet and grainy malts,

Taste- Opens with sweet caramels and nuts, fills the palate with sickly sweet malts, and finishes with the biting tinge of alcohol. Aftertaste is burnt sugars.

Feel- Big and chewy, it's actually mid-bodied but the carbonation fluffs it up.

Drink- An over-exaggerated Belgian? It's a decent sipper, but doesn't stand out among its peers.

SteveS1, Jul 06, 2010
Photo of kpoole25
2.3/5  rDev -37.2%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 2 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2

I didn't care for this beer, and I like most of what DFH makes. I only drank about 6 oz before pouring the rest out. I'd say this is the first beer where I really tasted the alcohol, and it wasn't the warm, sweet kind, it was the medicine cabinet type. The appearance was fine, a nice dark brown. Aromas had a little zing, almost tangy, I was thinking this might be a bit sour. Then the taste, initally sugary sweet that turned just gross. Pass on this one.

kpoole25, Nov 10, 2009
Photo of brianplatt
4/5  rDev +9.3%

brianplatt, May 24, 2012
Photo of J_Beloved
3/5  rDev -18%

J_Beloved, Jul 18, 2012
Photo of fugazidps
4/5  rDev +9.3%

fugazidps, Jun 12, 2014
Photo of epim00
3/5  rDev -18%

epim00, Jan 02, 2014
Photo of rmcnamee
3.5/5  rDev -4.4%

rmcnamee, May 15, 2014
Photo of TagoMago
2.58/5  rDev -29.5%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Presentation: 12 oz. longneck bottle.

Appearance: Hazy amber brown. Pours with a very faint head. Lacing is also very faint.

Aroma. Pungent and solvent-like with an overpowering fusal alcoholic stench.

Taste: Up front alcoholic punch - very fusal. The alcohol seems to be overpowering. There is some and hops and malt with some funky raisin and plum-like overtones

Overall: This is one of the worst offerings from Dogfish Head - completely unbalanced in every way. I won't be buying this again.

TagoMago, May 09, 2004
Photo of kevinglin
3.88/5  rDev +6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Reddish-copper body with a very small head that dissipated quickly. Dark fruit and sweet malt aroma, some nuttiness. Flavor mirrors the aroma - malty sweetness, some yeasty phenols and the dark fruit come through, perhaps a bit of hop spiciness, but nothing too powerful. Mouthfeel is well carbonated, about medium bodied. Overall, a fairly enjoyable beer. An acquired taste, not a session beer, but one that can be enjoyed one or two at a time.

kevinglin, Sep 14, 2008
Photo of ruleof72
3.9/5  rDev +6.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Beer pours a dark mahogony(sp?) color with a medium head that settles down to a thin ring and stays there. The smell was pine/citrus with a hint of raisin, slightly sweet and toasty. The taste backs up the smell as there is a good amount of sweet fruit and hops. Mouthfeel is good as well as drinkability.

Another good effort and definitely worth drinking.

ruleof72, Oct 04, 2007
Photo of cjbeckman
4/5  rDev +9.3%

cjbeckman, Apr 05, 2012
Photo of GregPearson33
3.35/5  rDev -8.5%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.5

Poured dark reddish brown with a real small head that receded to the edges after about 30 seconds. Great brown malty smell, but undeniably sweet. Definitely a little thicker on the mouthfeel. Strong nutty/sugary malty tones, and the booze (8.0%ABV) definitely shows through a little at end -- but just fine with me. Good brew, but wouldn't grab more than one or two without switching it up.

GregPearson33, Mar 07, 2009
Photo of Sneers
3.18/5  rDev -13.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Pours a beautiful deep ruby color, but there's almost no carbonation and therefore almost no head.

The nose is quite weak, but smells most of raisin, a tad of sugary sweetness, and something just a little bit "off" that I can't put my finger on. The taste is fairly vinous, which is, I suppose, to be expected. There's also a mild sweetness. The alcohol's a bit strong and leaves a bitter finish on the tongue. Unfortunately, that's about all I'm finding, and it makes for a pretty harsh flavor. Mouthfeel is pretty smooth, but the lack of carbonation hinders it.

Glad to try it, but this isn't a DFH brew I'll get again.

Sneers, Oct 28, 2010
Photo of JK4Stout
4.18/5  rDev +14.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Poured this 8% beauty into a "snifter" (tiny glass used to accentuate smells. You can really pick up on some chocolate notes, along with a heavy cake kind of grain scent. Very pleasing, makes one automatically think this will be sweet as all get out. A very good quality belgian aroma. Didn't pick up much from the raisin though.
Taste delivers that very thick flavor that one would want from this style of ale. A very heavy malt flavor, with only a slight hop note.
Bought this from Vintage Cellar in VA for a mere 2.15 a bottle.
A beer one would only need one of to enjoy. Not anything I would pound out with the buddys or anything.

JK4Stout, May 17, 2010
Photo of MemphisKev
4/5  rDev +9.3%

MemphisKev, Nov 16, 2011
Raison D'Être from Dogfish Head Brewery
83 out of 100 based on 4,090 ratings.