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Raison D'Être - Dogfish Head Brewery

Not Rated.
Raison D'ÊtreRaison D'Être

Educational use only; do not reuse.

4,228 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 4,228
Reviews: 1,775
rAvg: 3.66
pDev: 15.03%
Wants: 93
Gots: 378 | 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:
Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 08-09-2001

A deep mahogany, Belgian-style brown ale brewed with beet sugar, raisins and Belgian-style yeast.

25 IBU
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
to view all ratings, reviews and sorting options.
Ratings: 4,228 | Reviews: 1,775
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3/5  rDev -18%

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4.75/5  rDev +29.8%

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3.5/5  rDev -4.4%

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3/5  rDev -18%

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4.75/5  rDev +29.8%

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3.68/5  rDev +0.5%

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4.4/5  rDev +20.2%

Photo of Chesterbrewing
3.52/5  rDev -3.8%

Photo of Chuggnutt
3.87/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: Deep amber, dark woodgrain red. Not much head. Red edges. Clear.

Smell: Rich and sweet—plummy, fruity—dark fruit (the raisins...). Belgian candy sugar. Maybe cotton candy. Brandy-ish, almost a cognac character.

Taste: Sweet with Belgian candy (sugar) character. Strong alcohol, reminiscent of a barleywine. Definitely a "dark vegetable" character (maybe it's subliminal from the "beet" reference on the label). Rich with dark fruits—plum, date, black cherry. Definitely Belgian. Flossy and candy-ish.

Mouthfeel: Smooth, a little effervescent, a bit of bite from the alcohol. You want to roll it around the tongue, it has that character.

Overall: Very good, a little different. Lots of fruit and candy sugars make this a sipping ale.

Photo of mdebonee
4/5  rDev +9.3%

Photo of frankbro
4.63/5  rDev +26.5%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Exceptional Belgian style ale. I prefer a lot more hops, but this is the style. They use Belgian beet sugar and green raisins (a take off on the French for "reason to be") to raise the ABV to a respectable 8, without a loss of apparent malt intensity.(Unlike AB's rice syrups, that turn Bud into crap.) A beautiful reddish-gold color in the glass, tiny bubbles, but nice carbonation. A must when company comes, if you can part with it. A bargain at $8.99/6pk. Not really my style, but there's a case in my cellar. Excellent!

Photo of unitas3
2.68/5  rDev -26.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

Poured a deep amber body with no surprises. On the nose it was a bit sweet, the beet sugar and the raisin scent was a bit reminiscing yet seemed to be over powered by a pure sugar and alcohol front. The taste was not as pleasing as expected. The alcohol dominated with little or no balance on the finish, after warming up a bit the taste seemed to separate and oil out with a heavy to thick syrup body. Dried fruit was present but the alcohol was still to forward to allow a good harmony. I could see pairing this with a meal, maybe even braising a piece of meat with it furthering its unique crafting. I am glad I tried but probably won't drink again.

Photo of wonderbread23
3.03/5  rDev -17.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Appearance: Clear reddish brown hue. Small head quickly retreated to the rim providing a medium amount of lacing.

Smell: Sweet nose that was a little musty. A little caramel, a little clove and cinnamon. Very understated aroma.

Flavor: Caramel sweetness balanced by a little bitterness. A bit of fruit and raisin with a smidge of alcoholic structure.

Mouthful: Lively carbonation at first. Medium body and finish.

Drinkability: Understated complexity makes this a nice easy drinker.

Photo of Paesly27
4/5  rDev +9.3%

Photo of CanonJohn
4.32/5  rDev +18%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from bottle into a cut crystal water glass.

A: This is a beautiful beer. Clear red/amber.

S: Raisins. I smell a handfull of sun-maid raisins. Malty notes, backed by a slightly toasty aroma.

T: Knock out sweet. this could be a beer flavored disert wine. However it is very complex. The balance of flavors is a bit wonky, going back and forth between malty brown ale and out of control sweetness. Strangely it works. I think it is what the brewer was going for and I like it. This is not a bitter beer, though there is a slight bitter grapefruit note in the after taste.

M: Very highly carbonated. It reminded me a lot of diet coke in that respect. Even with the carbonation it came off as smooth and easy to drink.

D: As it stands alone, one bottle, very drinkable. I don't think I could handle more than that in a sitting. It's just to dang sweet and carbonated.

Notes: I would really suggest trying this one after a good meal. It really is a tour de force on its own, and might be a bit much on an empty stomach.

2.5/5  rDev -31.7%

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3.5/5  rDev -4.4%

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3.75/5  rDev +2.5%

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3.5/5  rDev -4.4%

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3.25/5  rDev -11.2%

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4.25/5  rDev +16.1%

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4.25/5  rDev +16.1%

Photo of MRclean
4.04/5  rDev +10.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Dogfish Head
Raison D’Etre

Vessel: 12oz. bottle poured into a tulip glass

A: Pours a reddish brown with one finger of slightly off-white head. The head dissipates slowly and will be gone ½ way through the beer.

S: Not a strong aroma, has slight earthy and bread note.

T: Nice richness with sweet caramel notes. This beer has a medium body and is very drinkable. Frankly, it is a bit difficult to describe, but it is enjoyable for sure.

M: Smooth almost creamy.

I recommend trying this beer.

Photo of b_add
1/5  rDev -72.7%

Photo of CMullaney
3.25/5  rDev -11.2%

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Raison D'Être from Dogfish Head Brewery
83 out of 100 based on 4,228 ratings.