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Raison D'Être - Dogfish Head Brewery

Not Rated.
Raison D'ÊtreRaison D'Être

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4,081 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 4,081
Reviews: 1,767
rAvg: 3.66
pDev: 15.3%
Wants: 73
Gots: 279 | 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
Sort by:  Usefulness | Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Raison D'Être Alström Bros
Ratings: 4,081 | Reviews: 1,767 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of Hootie159
3.25/5  rDev -11.2%

Hootie159, Aug 10, 2014
Photo of AmericanGothic
3.98/5  rDev +8.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a 12 oz bottle into a New Belgium globe.

A: Pours a translucent, copper color with 1/2 finger of pale tan head. Some retention and lace.

S: Bubblegum, straw and a little cinnamon.

T: A little hop bite up front leads to bubblegum, brown sugar and cinnamon, with some tea on the finish and light molasses in the aftertaste. As the beer warms, some nutty almond joins in, then later light black pepper.

M: Not too heavy, carbonation is slightly prickly.

O: I really like this beer. While the flavor doesn't quite make it to a 4.5, there is something about it that's really satisfying. Will definitely buy again.

AmericanGothic, Apr 10, 2012
Photo of jbdpsu82
2.5/5  rDev -31.7%

jbdpsu82, Feb 20, 2013
Photo of hsus0225
3.5/5  rDev -4.4%

hsus0225, Jun 04, 2013
Photo of abcsofbeer
3.85/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Dark amber color with very small head after the pour. Head disappears quickly, but leaves a nice lace 3/4 of the way through the glass. Musty, fruity flavor with a nice, but hard to pinpoint aftertaste. Finishes strong with the taste remaining consistent all the way to the bottom. Highly recommend this one.

abcsofbeer, Apr 15, 2004
Photo of robieobie1
3.5/5  rDev -4.4%

robieobie1, Mar 05, 2012
Photo of Bjlps
3.5/5  rDev -4.4%

Bjlps, Dec 09, 2013
Photo of Stagga_Lee
3.75/5  rDev +2.5%

Stagga_Lee, Jul 22, 2014
Photo of IPx
4/5  rDev +9.3%

IPx, Nov 19, 2011
Photo of deac83
3.75/5  rDev +2.5%

deac83, Mar 02, 2013
Photo of whoneeds8
4/5  rDev +9.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours into a imperial pint ruby red with a thin off white head. Minimal lacing. The smell shows the Raisens, grapefruit scents with a belgian yeast scent. The taste is much the same. Maybe a little too strong with the grape/raisens. There is a good amount of carmeled malt flavors as well.

whoneeds8, Jun 23, 2010
Photo of AWS2111
3/5  rDev -18%

AWS2111, Jan 06, 2012
Photo of 6demonbag
4.75/5  rDev +29.8%

6demonbag, Sep 05, 2012
Photo of MADPolo
2.75/5  rDev -24.9%

MADPolo, May 07, 2013
Photo of ScotNH
3.5/5  rDev -4.4%

ScotNH, Jan 24, 2014
Photo of Yoda22
3.2/5  rDev -12.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A- Pours a clear deep amber with 1 finger head that dissipates fairly quick. Lots of tiny bubbles floating to the surface.

S- Sweet smelling, a hint of the alcohol. There might be a little raisin in there as the label suggests but the sugary smell comes through the most.

T- Very sweet up front, it just attacks your tongue. Then a quick blast of booze (definitely an 8% beer as advertised! Then it fades away to a more roasty coffee-like flavor. The coffee taste lingers long past the gulp. This isn't quite what I was expecting and i'm not a huge fan but that's also because of my personal dislike of most roasty/coffee like beers so I won't penalize it heavily for that.

M- Medium creamy body, medium/appropriate carbonation. Very smooth.

O- This is definitely an off centered ale for off centered people. Very extreme on the sweetness and alcohol content but not in a bad way. Wish the coffee aftertaste wasn't there. It's not for me but it's a pretty good beer.

Yoda22, Feb 17, 2012
Photo of wo87810
3/5  rDev -18%

wo87810, Mar 07, 2012
Photo of Dweedlebug
4/5  rDev +9.3%

Dweedlebug, Mar 05, 2012
Photo of Gaisgeil
3.93/5  rDev +7.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

On tap @ The Oak Cafe, what luck I'm having!

Pours a deep mahogany red with a thin head with no retention. Nose is of dark fruits, lots of raisin going on here, no kidding eh? Taste is very similar to the nose, but even louder, the raisins and dark fruits explode in the heat of the alcohol, this is one powerful beer, very overbearing, reminds me of my Aunt Joann, she's a cheek pincher. Regardless this one was difficult to drink very fast, certainly a sipper, a pint was FAR more than enough. Lots of layers going on here, but honestly there was more going on here than I was interested in delving into. So I'd say this one is reaching toward the overdone end of the spectrum. Still, this is a well crafted brew and a decent American attempt at the style, kudos!


Gaisgeil, Apr 24, 2005
Photo of krisandajt
4.05/5  rDev +10.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Another fine brew courtesy of the NEPA Beer Club's latest case split. I do love me some DFH...

Appearance: Poured from the bottle, the beer is a rich, dark, opaque brown color. Not quite sure what is going on tonight, but every beer I've enjoyed has been lacking in the head department. Jeez, this is why I drink beer...it's the only head I get! Anyway, I can see the sporadic bubble creeping up from the bottom of the glass, but all that's really there is a thin ring of off-white bubbles encircling the beer. Not really much lacing either, the beer sort of clings to the glass and slowly falls back down.

Smell: Smell is sweet, it's got some nice dark fruit qualities to it. Strange, I'm actually getting some chocolate making its way through. I'm liking it so far.

Taste: I do love what DFH does with beer! Dark candied fruit and milk chocolate, an interesting combination. The alcohol is very well hidden, I'm not picking up any of the 8%. Pretty damn tasty this is.

Mouthfeel: Well done here. Good carbonation, nice medium body, goes down smooth and easy.

Drinkability: Another great DFH beer. Good, unique flavor and a nice take on the style. Very drinkable for what it is, I can see myself enjoying this brew again. Recommend.

krisandajt, Jul 03, 2010
Photo of jlenik
4/5  rDev +9.3%

jlenik, Dec 26, 2011
Photo of RockyTopHeel
3.85/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Shimmering copper color with suspended sediment - yeast and a thin, off-white head. Scent is soft with hints of candied fruit. The flavor has sweetness of golden raisins, with prevalent influence of a malty softness and intermittent hops, with a sweet kiss of alcohol in the finish. Underneath these more noticeable flavors is a bitterness--almost chocolate or coffee like in a stout, but closer to caramel in depth--that emerges as the beer warms. There's a definite richness to this one, but it's still drinkable, and the sediment I first noticed was a nice touch of yeast.

I like it.

RockyTopHeel, Oct 29, 2003
Photo of bosco7
3.93/5  rDev +7.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Copper color with off-white head that lasts.

Spicy hops, raisins, brown sugar, and bready aromas.

Sugary sweet. Bread crust, brown sugar, and toffee in the start. Raisins, fig, and some plum in the middle. Finishes spicy; black pepper, nutmeg, and cinnamon flavors. Partially dry finish. Good.

Medium body and smooth mouthfeel. Highly drinkable at 8% ABV. Very tasty but lacks a certain something.

bosco7, Jul 28, 2007
Photo of Nutwood
4/5  rDev +9.3%

Nutwood, Jun 30, 2012
Photo of Satsuma
3.75/5  rDev +2.5%

Satsuma, Jun 09, 2013
Raison D'Être from Dogfish Head Brewery
83 out of 100 based on 4,081 ratings.