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Raison D'Être - Dogfish Head Brewery

Not Rated.
Raison D'ÊtreRaison D'Être

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4,060 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 4,060
Reviews: 1,766
rAvg: 3.66
pDev: 15.3%
Wants: 71
Gots: 272 | FT: 6
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: 4,060 | Reviews: 1,766 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of RockyTopHeel

North Carolina

3.85/5  rDev +5.2%

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.

10-29-2003 04:34:37 | More by RockyTopHeel
Photo of bosco7


3.93/5  rDev +7.4%

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.

07-28-2007 04:52:51 | More by bosco7
Photo of Nutwood


4/5  rDev +9.3%

06-30-2012 21:14:16 | More by Nutwood
Photo of rypkr


4.25/5  rDev +16.1%

06-28-2013 01:51:01 | More by rypkr
Photo of RandyBoBandy


4/5  rDev +9.3%

01-20-2012 04:57:05 | More by RandyBoBandy
Photo of cbeer88


4.25/5  rDev +16.1%

02-16-2013 03:20:43 | More by cbeer88
Photo of BitteBier


3.98/5  rDev +8.7%

Slightly hazy copper-amber pour topped off with a small amount of brown foam. Thick, rich smell with notes of caramelized brown sugar. The substantial alcohol content is detectable in the nose as well, though not offensively. An interesting combination of taste and mouthfeel--silky sweet malts at the onset with a taste that thins out (bringing the alcohol to great prominence) while a powdery texture remains. The texture and chocolately notes are vaguely reminiscent of a glass of cocoa. This is the first Dogfish offering I've had that I would buy again.

11-29-2003 18:38:15 | More by BitteBier
Photo of jadpsu


2.83/5  rDev -22.7%

Pours amber with an off tan head that has both superiorretention and side lacing.
Aroma is of molasses and raisens and to a lesser extent some mlatiness. Alcohol is definitly present and heavier than I like.
Taste is syrupy and sweet, but too sweet and any malts are lost in the sweet syrup.
Finishes dry but too sweet for me.

06-12-2010 01:07:43 | More by jadpsu
Photo of brett606


5/5  rDev +36.6%

07-04-2013 06:23:05 | More by brett606
Photo of AWB3


4.5/5  rDev +23%

01-17-2014 16:02:44 | More by AWB3
Photo of LuckySevens82


3.95/5  rDev +7.9%

12 oz bottle.
Pours a clear dulled-ruby color with a nice side head, with lots of carbonation.
The ABV is high in this beer and you can definitely tell by the high alcohol scents. After you get past all of that though, this is a rather complex beer... There is a certain amount of spiciness and fruit scents as well.
The hop content in this beer is low, but still present in the taste. Among the flavors of this complex brew are dried fruit (apricots) grapes, and plums.
This is a lot smoother than you would think for such a high gravity brew.
Another solid offering from DFH.

04-25-2004 01:41:09 | More by LuckySevens82
Photo of Dweedlebug


4/5  rDev +9.3%

03-05-2012 00:41:08 | More by Dweedlebug
Photo of hsus0225


3.5/5  rDev -4.4%

06-04-2013 04:15:31 | More by hsus0225
Photo of goz


4.03/5  rDev +10.1%

Reddish brown pour. Malty sweet nose, maybe some alcohol on the nose. Taste is very complex - sweet, then bitter, slight alcohol in there, too. Too many different flavors to pick them all out. Maybe more like a wine or brandy than beer, in terms of complexity.

01-20-2003 09:26:12 | More by goz
Photo of deac83


3.75/5  rDev +2.5%

03-02-2013 03:35:23 | More by deac83
Photo of Buggies


3/5  rDev -18%

A very average beer from Dogfish. Quite bland. Only slight aromas of yeast and grapes. Tastes sort of bland to me. Same flavors as the aroma, typical yeast flavors as well as the grape. Slight bitterness there too that just seems out of place.

Overall, I think I'll skip on these next time. A mediocre beer with a high ABV. Nothing special. And where are the aromas and flavors of raisins?

09-03-2011 00:52:01 | More by Buggies
Photo of TubaManJack


3.75/5  rDev +2.5%

12-28-2012 02:11:52 | More by TubaManJack
Photo of Spineypanda


4/5  rDev +9.3%

Overall great tasting beer.
Pours a dark amber, with a good head and lacing.
Smells of sweet caramel malts and not much else.
Tastes sweet and has the grape taste as well as the roasted malts. Interesting and tasty.

I like this beer and will buy it again!

02-15-2010 03:17:32 | More by Spineypanda
Photo of GinsuDave


3.75/5  rDev +2.5%

05-24-2013 22:30:47 | More by GinsuDave
Photo of Swaino

New York

3.75/5  rDev +2.5%

02-12-2014 02:14:32 | More by Swaino
Photo of Yoda22

North Carolina

3.2/5  rDev -12.6%

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.

02-17-2012 22:04:20 | More by Yoda22
Photo of PTEdelman


3.25/5  rDev -11.2%

07-05-2014 11:31:17 | More by PTEdelman
Photo of chefbigjon


3.5/5  rDev -4.4%

05-13-2014 05:25:25 | More by chefbigjon
Photo of umustdrink


3.5/5  rDev -4.4%

A - Dark red color, clear. Head is light brown and settles in splotches. Beer is too thin to have any lacing.

S - Smell is on the faint side but I detect some darker malt details, some sweeter yeast notes almost like a dunkelweizen.

T - Bittery malts, with a few dark fruit notes. Taste is also on the watery side but there is a lovely dark coffee sensation aftertaste.

M - Too thin.

D - Lacking in taste, smell and body. If the taste was just intensified I would enjoy this beer a lot more...because it does taste good. I would also like to note that the alcohol is very well hidden.

01-29-2007 03:04:04 | More by umustdrink
Photo of jdklks


2.55/5  rDev -30.3%

pours a deep amber/brown with a fizzy white head that retreats quickly into nothing but a thin ring around the glass. smells hoppy, malty, belgian yeasty. raisins, figs, and brown sugar are also present.

i dont drink a whole lot of belgian style beers, and this is perhaps why. they tend to taste badly. not terrible up front; sweet, and nothing else. hardly any complexity, just dullness. maybe some raisins through the middle. the finish is by far the worst part of the beer. an unpleasant burnt sugar flavor, made a little less unpleasant by the fact that it is simply dull. there is really nothing here to taste. my least favorite DFH beer ive tried.

mouthfeel is overly carbonated, but has a decent medium body. drinkability is damn near nil. i wouldn't buy it again, and i may drain pour this one, so as to be able to salvage my beer experience for the night.

08-29-2009 04:22:58 | More by jdklks
Raison D'Être from Dogfish Head Brewery
83 out of 100 based on 4,060 ratings.