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Zwaanend'ale - Dogfish Head Brewery

Not Rated.
Zwaanend'aleZwaanend'ale

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
86
very good

66 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 66
Reviews: 54
rAvg: 3.86
pDev: 10.62%
Wants: 34
Gots: 6 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Dogfish Head Brewery visit their website
Delaware, United States

Style | ABV
Bock |  8.00% ABV

Availability: Limited (brewed once)

Notes/Commercial Description:
This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

Brewed to commemorate the 375th Anniversary Celebration for the first town (Lewes) in the first state (Delaware), this is an old Dutch-style Rye Bokbier brewed with honey.

(Beer added by: hopsaplenty on 04-25-2006)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 66 | Reviews: 54 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of ckeegan04
4.04/5  rDev +4.7%

ckeegan04, Yesterday at 02:30 AM
Photo of BeerThursdays
3.25/5  rDev -15.8%

BeerThursdays, Jul 04, 2014
Photo of RBorsato
2.75/5  rDev -28.8%

RBorsato, Oct 16, 2013
Photo of dgherm
3.75/5  rDev -2.8%

dgherm, Aug 02, 2013
Photo of mendvicdog
4/5  rDev +3.6%

mendvicdog, Feb 25, 2013
Photo of randylangford
4/5  rDev +3.6%

randylangford, Feb 11, 2013
Photo of uturn
3.75/5  rDev -2.8%

uturn, Jan 16, 2013
Photo of t0rin0
4/5  rDev +3.6%

t0rin0, Sep 20, 2012
Photo of dbrauneis
3.75/5  rDev -2.8%

dbrauneis, Jan 02, 2012
Photo of metter98
3.83/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A: The beer is hazy amber-brown in color and poured with a very thin head that quickly died down, leaving lacing on the surface and a thin ring of bubbles around the edge of the glass.
S: There are sweet aromas of malt and raisins in the nose.
T: The overall taste is quite malty with flavors of raisins sweet potatoes and hints of malty sweetness.
M: It feels medium-bodied and slightly syrupy on the palate with a moderate amount of carbonation.
O: The beer is well balanced for the style—possibly because the spiciness from the rye helps to prevent this beer from becoming overly sweet or cloying.

metter98, Jan 02, 2012
Photo of THECPJ
4/5  rDev +3.6%

THECPJ, Nov 23, 2011
Photo of brandoman63
4.5/5  rDev +16.6%

brandoman63, Nov 19, 2011
Photo of ROGUE16
4/5  rDev +3.6%

ROGUE16, Nov 17, 2011
Photo of trappistlover
3.95/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

(750ml bottle from Susan!!!) This was a big want of mine! Pours hazy orange/light ruby. White head with little carbonation. Aroma is caramel, candied sugar. Taste is sweet with a bit of bitterness, but not much. Medium bodied with sticky texture. This is smooth. Many, many thanks for this surprise. A nice surprise.

trappistlover, Jul 04, 2011
Photo of tuckevalastin
4.13/5  rDev +7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

2006 Bottle

A: Pours a dark amber color. Very translucent with a small head that doesn't last long.

S: Has a strong sweet malty aroma. Smells of dark fruit/raison with some honey and carmel type tones.

T: The taste follows where the smell left off. Again sweet malts dominate. Raisons, honeys, and some caramels are clearly noticable.

M: A medium bodied beer with little spice and not much heat. A pretty smooth beer.

D: The sweet malts are pretty strong but it is still rather drinkable.

Overall, this beer is pretty decent four years later. I never tried a fresh one so I can't speak for what the aging did but it's definetly one I drank pretty easily.

D:

tuckevalastin, May 16, 2010
Photo of nickd717
3.85/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

2006 bottle via trade thanks to truehumand on BA, shared at a tasting surrounding the Bruery hoopla.

Pours a somewhat hazy dark amber color with a nice off-white head and some decent lacing.

Aroma is sweet, malty, and very dark fruity. Caramel, toffee, plum, and raisin stand out.

Flavor is also loads of dark fruit - plum, raisin, and fig mostly - very sweet, with caramel, toffee, maple syrup, and wood. Some mild sherry-like oxidation going on.

Medium-full on the body and somewhat syrupy with fairly soft carbonation. Drinkability is pretty good. I like what they did here overall, even if it's not a standout.

nickd717, Jan 20, 2010
Photo of ClockworkOrange
4/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Brewed to commemorate the 375th anniversary of Lewes, Deleware. The first town in the first state. Figured this one isn't getting any better. Out of the cellar it comes. A capped 750ml bottled on 4/14/06. Poured into my DFH shaker glass. The bock appears the color of iced tea with a thin finger or so of off white foam. Nose and flavors consist of raisins, caramel malt, brown sugar, more raisins, honey, prunes, tobacco, slightly spicy. Medium bodied with ample carbonation. Glad I had the chance to finally try this one off.

ClockworkOrange, Dec 07, 2009
Photo of connecticutpoet
4.47/5  rDev +15.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Obtained 4-20-09, in an in-person trade with AdamB84 at Julio's Liquors in Westborough MA. I got this, and he got a 2007 Sanctification. This was bottled 4-14-06. Just over 3 years old... gotta be good.

Opened with barely a hiss. Got a huge whiff of aroma (see notes later). Poured out a nice clear amber brew, with a half finger head that was rather noisy at first. It eventually subsided completely.

Aroma was VERY complex and multilayered. Dark fruits (mainly raisins and prunes), rum, rich strong malts, sweet, honey-like, brown sugar all blended together. Wow. And yet, despite all this, it still definitely had that distinctive bock smell. Although if I had to choose a style based on just the smell, I would have picked doppelbock.

Taste starts out with rich full malts, then some fruitiness. It was a little estery, with a little rye bite, and finished with a honey-biscuit sweetness. On the swallow, the alcohol made itself known.

Mouthfeel was full, rich, viscous but not oily, with some warming character from the alcohol. Somewhat chewy, but not overbearing.

Drinkability... damn I wish this wasn't retired. I could go through two bottles of this in one sitting and not flinch. VERY deceptively easy drinking.

connecticutpoet, Apr 22, 2009
Photo of pershan
4.33/5  rDev +12.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

The beer poured a clear, dark amber with a thin, almond head into a pint glass. The smell was of sweet malt and caramel - very nice. The taste was an excellent blend of caramel and sweet malt flavor, alcoholic esters, with a subdued hop bitterness at the finish. Nice carbonation and lacing, too. A top-notch high-gravity bock.

pershan, Aug 21, 2008
Photo of illidurit
4.05/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Thanks to gunhaver for opening this bottle at the RBSG 08 Grand Tasting. Poured into a La Chouffe goblet. Dark orange color with a wet white head that leaves some lace chunks. Sweet caramel malt aroma with some tropical esters and raisin. Flavors of sweet stone fruit and caramel, a touch of spice, prune, and tobacco. Zero alcohol flavor, great drinkability. Another bizarre winner from DFH.

illidurit, Aug 06, 2008
Photo of Patrick999
3.75/5  rDev -2.8%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

This is probably past its prime, but they'll never produce it again, so what the hell....why not try it and give it a review? Bottled in 2006.

A - Poured into a goblet. Looked a little devoid of carbonation at first, but rallied late in the pour to muster a decent cap. Didn't retain so well, though. Slightly hazy reddish-gold, more red than gold.

S - I make a point to record my first impression upon opening a bottle, and when I sniffed, my first thought was "raisin." Pouring did nothing to dispel that thought. I don't know whether it's due to age or not, but it has taken on that rum raisin vinous aroma found in some of the DFH big beers. It's a good smell.

T - I could swear I've had this beer before. Honeyed raisins...I'll be damned, is this Midas Touch? I do get some spicy hints of rye - the rye aspect of this beer was probably stronger fresh. Sweet honeyed malts carry the day here, completely blitzing the considerable 8% alcohol. Burps are really strong rum raisin.

F - Good, better than expected for a sweet beer like this, but then again DFH always does a good job of making their sweeter beers go down easier than they really should. Doesn't make my mouth feel as sticky as it probably should.

D - While I enjoy this beer, a full 750ml bottle is a bit much for me in one sitting. I now wish I had someone to share it with. This is a beer that could conceivably be served to people who think they don't like beer. Could go in lieu of a dessert wine, or be paired with a meal in its own right. Just not very sessionable.

Patrick999, May 23, 2008
Photo of TheManiacalOne
3.5/5  rDev -9.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Acquired via trade from mymrnngjckt, so a big Thank You goes out to him. Poured from a 750ml bottle into a mug glass.

A: The beer is a deep amber color, with a thin off-white head that fades quickly and leaves a thin lace on the glass.

S: The aroma is sweet and malty with caramel, honey, brown sugar and spices. There's a touch of hops in the background as well.

T: The taste is likewise very sweet with flavors of honey, brown sugar and caramel up front along with a mild alcohol sting. The malt character is hearty but not too heavy. There's a decent hops presence that provides some balance. The after-taste is slightly sweet.

M: Smooth and crisp, medium body, medium carbonation, finish is dry but slightly sticky.

D: Tasty, goes down easily, slightly filling, good kick, nice representation of style while still being a little different which is the norm for a DFH beer (and especially their one-off releases), it's a good beer, but it's not one that I could see myself drinking more than one bottle of, nor could I see myself selecting it over too many other beers.

TheManiacalOne, Feb 17, 2008
Photo of Beertracker
3.75/5  rDev -2.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Dogfish Head's Zwaanend'ale was brewed to commemorate the 375th Anniversary Celebration of Lewes, Delaware. According to the brewery this is an old Dutch-style Rye Bokbier brewed with honey. This special anniversary Bock pours up with ample carbonation that creates a long standing & stable creamish white head with loose bubbles that prominently stands atop a deep amber-gamboge orange body. The honeyish nose displays some rich toasted maltiness that's reminiscent of freshly baked sourdough rye bread with wisps of dried fruits (e.g. apricots, mangos, pawpaws, etc...), spicy hops, and grain alcohol. Maybe just a hint of dusty oxidation? The satisfying flavor is dominated by a sweet doughy maltiness with some caramel & honey notes (e.g. Baklava) along with a pleasant nuttiness (e.g. roasted & salted pistachios) that's marked by just a touch of spicy (e.g. caraway seed, cumin) bitterness. The slightly salty/mineral like finish is a touch heavy, but there's sufficient bitterness, alcoholic complexity, and some dryness from the rye to keep it from becoming overly cloying. This finely crafted specialty Bock from Dogfish shows just how diverse this brewery can be and comes highly recommended if you have a bottle hidden in your cellar. If not, definitely trade or track one down! My suggested food pairing is Apfel-Currywurst und Pommes Frites (sliced & browned Bratwursts smothered with sautéd sweet Vidalia onions, honey-pepper bacon bits, and Granny Smith apples covered in a spicy curry sauce served over French fried Yukon Gold potatoes served in a thick bowl with buttered slices of freshly baked sourdough rye bread. Here's to the first state in the Union!

PROST! Beertracker

*Taster's Note: Special thanks to travisd13 for the bottle.

Beertracker, Feb 06, 2008
Photo of beerking1
4.03/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Bottling date 4/14/06, stored in my cellar and refrigerator since early 2007. The beer is called an "ale," but the label says it is a "bok," which is a lager style. Pours clear medium orange-amber, with an off-white head that fades fairly fast, leaving a decent lace. Aroma is alcohol, crystal malt, and some spicy rye character. Big bodied beer, with flavors of rye, sweet malt, some figs, and alcoholic notes.

beerking1, Dec 30, 2007
Photo of Jacobob10
3.4/5  rDev -11.9%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

Acquired at the Belgium Comes to Cooperstown 2007 festival at Brewery Ommegang from a very generous DFH employee.

Poured into a snifter, the color is light brown with a thin, bubbly white head. Not much head retention, but reappeared with a little swirl. The aroma was very sweet. Lots of caramel. The taste was even sweeter. Very malty and slightly boozy. Carbonation was low and the alcohol was definitely noticable as the beer was a bit "hot" in my mouth. Decent flavor, but could probably benefit from a little more carbonation.

Jacobob10, Oct 08, 2007
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Zwaanend'ale from Dogfish Head Brewery
86 out of 100 based on 66 ratings.