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Noble Rot - Dogfish Head Brewery

Not Rated.
Noble RotNoble Rot

Educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
89
very good

331 Reviews
THE BROS
90
outstanding

(Read More)
Reviews: 331
Hads: 1,508
rAvg: 3.98
pDev: 9.05%
Wants: 107
Gots: 203 | FT: 5
Brewed by:
Dogfish Head Brewery visit their website
Delaware, United States

Style | ABV
Saison / Farmhouse Ale |  9.00% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: paulozanello on 02-20-2011

This saison-esque science project gets complexity and fermentable sugars from two unique wine grapes sourced with our friends at Alexandria Nicole Cellars in Prosser, Wash.

The first addition is unfermented juice, known as must, from viognier grapes that have been infected with a benevolent fungus called botrytis. This noble rot reduces the water content in the grapes while magnifying their sweetness and complexity. The second is pinot gris must intensified by a process called dropping fruit, where large clusters of grapes are clipped to amplify the quality of those left behind.

Noble Rot is brewed with pils and wheat malts and fermented with a distinct Belgian yeast strain. It has a spicy white wine body and a dry, tart finish.
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
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Reviews: 331 | Hads: 1,508
Photo of Antg8989
4.09/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.25

Pours a clear straw colored with an off white head. Lacing is minimal. Aroma is estery and random hints of watermelon?? Taste is also estery and grainy with hints of lemongrass. There's a slight spiciness to this one, but it is very minimal. Tastes like a sparkling white wine. The feel is light/medium bodied with a high carbonation. The finish is dry. Overall, the beer tasted like it matured well. It's a solid example of the style but strong in aspects I'm not a fan of and weak in aspects I would have preferred more of. (525 characters)

Photo of erconn0r
4/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I made Norther Brewers home brew, "Saison Du Vin" and it is now 1 year old. Compared to this home brew, the Dogfish's Noble Rot was sweeter. The ROH content for me is a little high as I enjoy the session component of a beer. I also watered it down w carbonated water & it was still great. The noble rot element, is very subtle when compared to a non rotted grape extract.... Still an excellent sipper.. I was surprised it did not blow past my home brew.... My home brew is better than I expected! Anyone know what yeast Dogfish used? I used belle saison.... (557 characters)

Photo of BeerDawgs
3.64/5  rDev -8.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.5

L - Pilsner yellow, with clarity and not much head

S - Slightly fruity and sweet, grapes for sure. Not much else.

T - It tastes like a fruit beer, not getting much saison or strong ale. Grapes. ABV definitely hidden.

F - Light bodied and thin.

O - It tastes like a spiked grape juice. (291 characters)

Photo of CMIKEHUNT
5/5  rDev +25.6%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Nice very nice
Great beer.
Lots of bubbles and a fluffy white head like sparkling wine or champagne. .
Taste is very winey like if for example. . beer and champaign had sex . This would be the love child.
Was very similar to goose island Sofie.. but not a elegant.
Over all i very much enjoyed every sip..
This would be the baby. . (335 characters)

Photo of dcotom
4.42/5  rDev +11.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Poured from 750-ml bottle into wine glass. This self-described "sorta-saison" pours a light coppery color with a slight purplish tinge, with a brilliant white head that dissipates rather quickly. Aroma presents elements of both beer and wine, with some light malts, yeasts, and green apple. These elements are prominent on the palate as well. Finishes dry and crisp, with some lingering tart cider notes. Unique concept, very well executed. (440 characters)

Photo of Budlum
3.96/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

The body is a clear straw yellow showing tons of bubbles and a fluffy white head. Smell is sharp wine on the nose which certainly makes sense for the theme - lots of sour apple. The flavors are dry and tart like a spicy white wine, no surprises, but a certain pleasant sweetness opens as the beer warms. An interesting experiment that I'm glad I tried, but wouldn't go out of my way to get this again. (404 characters)

Photo of jzlyo
3.49/5  rDev -12.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Aroma is citrus, grapes and mild earthy notes. The flavor is grapes, grainy malts, citrus, medium to full body, musty notes and a tart/mildly sweet finish. (155 characters)

Photo of OrestesMethuon
4.39/5  rDev +10.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Fresh, dry, musty pinot gris nose; very nice pure-yellow pils colors; extremely clean, clarion-tart sweetness, ultimately mild yet concentrated and piquant. A very tasty, refreshing experiment, with a hint of wildness but a very hemmed-in—almost, dare I say, "normal"—amount of experimentation. Good reverence for dry, bright whites—never thick enough to feel like a wit—ensconced in the flesh of a pale pils. (419 characters)

Photo of Jadjunk
3.5/5  rDev -12.1%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

"We brew this unique, sorta-saison with a little help from our friends at Alexandria Nicole Cellars using botrytis-infected Viognier grape must. This "noble rot" magnifies its complexity and long finish." Brewed in the style of a Saison with grape must added. Available in 750 ml. bottles and on seasonal draft.

Poured from a 750 ml. bottle to a Dogfish Head signature glass. Served above 56 degrees Fahrenheit.

(Appearance) Pours a crisp, fizzy ecru white head over a pale straw amber body with ample, lively carbonation and high clarity. Retention is poor and there is no visible lacing. 2.5

(Smell) Aromas of fermented white grape juices, cracker malt, a touch of peppery spice and a moderate acidity. Some delicate sweetness from the malt and fruit profiles combined although the overall aroma is fairly dry. Potency is moderate. 3.75

(Taste) Sweet fermented grape juices, lightly vinous with a light alcohol presence, sweet pale and cracker malt body, clean with light yeast character. Finish is moderately dry. 3.5

(Mouthfeel) Texture is slick, residual, silky and medium dry. Carbonation is high, generating a moderate frothiness and a full crisp finish. Body is shy of medium for the style, medium overall. Balance is moderately sweet over dry and acidic. Alcohol presence is light and there are no off characters. 3.5

(Overall) I was hoping that the use of grape must would not be singled out in this beer, but unfortunately Noble Rot suffers from a considerable limitation on flavor profile. The grape must generates a full juicy white grape profile with little accenting from the malt body nor from the yeast character, which is very mild for a saison, creating little to no perceived spiciness, barnyard or funk character. Arguably a halfway decent crossover beer to and from wine, notably for the very limited crowd who favors sweet dessert wines with little to no fermented character nor acidity. I found that Dogfish Head did a better job of utilizing grape must in their Sixty-One Ale. 3.5

Dogfish Head Brewery's
Noble Rot Ale
3.5/5.00 (2,058 characters)

Photo of Mehinaman
3.75/5  rDev -5.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

This is very good. Sweet, tart and refreshing. My only gripe is that maybe it is just a tad bit to sweet, but at the same time I expect it would taste great on a really hot summer day. Almost tastes like champagne more than beer (228 characters)

Photo of jeffjeff1
3.95/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

I had this a while ago but still had my notes and never put it in here.
Appearance- pale yellow color, thick foamy head, very nice lacing
Smell- citrus fruit(lemon), wheat
Taste- white grape, lemon, wheat
Mouthfeel- medium bodied
Drinkability- I thought it was very good. I loved it. (283 characters)

Photo of Jonny41
4.01/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

unique brew the closest wine/beer cross over i have found.
This would be a great one to get your wine friends to try or to share a beer with the wife that doesn't drink beer.
Well paired with food, wouldnt want more than one pour with out pairing,, sips well. (261 characters)

Photo of J-Rye
4.19/5  rDev +5.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.25

Poured from a 750mL at Cloverleaf in West Caldwell, NJ, into a snifter. Very interesting beer that developed complexity with each sip. I bought a second bottle at a good shop and was able to cook with it, making a french-style butter sauce with the beer. I paired the meal with the beer. Very nice and interesting beer. I will get it again, I think. (354 characters)

Photo of HattedClassic
4.04/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

The beer pours a nice white and foamy head that dissipates quickly but looks nice if kept alive by a glass with a nucleation point. The beer itself is a clear pale gold bordering on a golden straw.

The beer smell is absolutely wonderful. The smell has both the qualities of a saison and a white wine (pinot gris and viognier). The saison smell comes from a nice bitter hop smell and earthy wheat smell. The wine grapes add a nice fruit and tartness to the smell. Instead of working against each other, the smells combine quite nicely to give off a tart and sweet smelling saison.

The beer taste is also pretty good. Even though the beer has the same notes as the smell, the tartness from the grapes seem to be pretty strong. However, it complements the hop and wheat rather than overwhelming it. The taste also has a slight alcohol note.

The mouthfeel is decent. The main issue is that it feel heavier than a saison should be and the experience suffers a little. The beer has very little carbonation to it but enough to give it a little texture. The beer seems to be somewhere between a wine and a beer. Too smooth and heavy for a beer but too much carbonation to be a wine.

Overall, a fairly good offering and a nice saison for the colder warm days. (1,254 characters)

Photo of dbl_delta
3.54/5  rDev -11.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Bottle dated December 2013 (!) so more than a year old. Poured into pint glass. Straw color, with a fine white head. Moderate carbonation. Interesting blend of wine and beer. Reminds me of champagne in some respects, but with a lot of other stuff going on. I'm not a big fan of Belgian style beers, so my review probably reflects my own personal preferences. Light and refreshing. Quite dry. (398 characters)

Photo of pat61
4.66/5  rDev +17.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A: Light hazy straw color under a quickly dissipating soft ½” foam collar that produces splotchy lace.
S: Grape, over ripe fruit, citrus herbs.
T: Starts with fruit – grape and melon balanced by a light lemony tartness and traces of funk. Goes from slightly sweet to dry. Grape aftertastes linger.
M: Medium body to a little less with champagne like carbonation.
O: A light refreshing saison that straddles the line between wine and beer. (447 characters)

Photo of jmw4437
3.85/5  rDev -3.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

L: Pours a fairly light, clear golden color with an initially thick head of very small bubbles which dissipate very quickly; almost akin to a champagne.

S: Smell is slightly musty and dusty with a mix of fruits.

T: Taste is better than the smell eluded to. Hints of sweet fruits, and must like would be expected from a white wine.

F: The mouth-feel is similar to that of a champagne with the small prickly feel of carbonation.

O: Overall, very drinkable, but not something I'd rack back to the store to buy. Good, not great. (528 characters)

Photo of beerbully
3.93/5  rDev -1.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from bottle into Weyerbacher Cuvee

L-Light straw yellow, clear, 1/2 inch head little retention yields to a slim whitecap, some noticeable carbonation rising from the bottom of the glass

S-White grapes are noticeable immediately along with some saison yeasty funk, some sour tartness, mild lemon notes, shares similar characteristics with white wine

T-Somewhat follows the nose with a bit of a refreshing punch that is not revealed in the nose.......taste is better than the aroma.........taste has some champagne like qualities, sweet tartness some yeasty esters, grape and lemon

M-Lots of crisp carbonation, light, dry, very refreshing

O-refreshing crisp beer that has a balance of tartness from the grapes and funk from the yeast.......both sweet and sour at times.......probably the perfect sunday brunch beer (824 characters)

Photo of DaveBar
4.23/5  rDev +6.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Purchased at Champagne's in MI for $12.00. Served at 4deg C in a tulip

A- Opens well and pours a nice 1" high white head that is gone within a minute. Very pale yellow filtered clear

S- Oodles of grapey goodness. Rather sour note.

T- Touch sour. Medium sweetness. Lots of grape notes. Not much yeast here but some hops.

M- Light yet a bit of sugary stickiness.

O- Very nice break on beers. Good blend overall and would like to try in cask. Will buy again

Food Pairing

This nice little brew went well with..... Spicy salmon roll sushi!

Enjoy (552 characters)

Photo of Tripel_Threat
4.68/5  rDev +17.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

Served in a goblet at Ashley's Westland. Two fingers of bubbly head sat atop a pale gold/yellow brew, filled with carbonation. Head dissipates quickly. Smell is sweet, floral. Taste is much the same, sweet grape, with a dry, sort of metallic undercurrent. Pleasant and refreshing. Mouthfeel is much like champagne. Happy I had it, would try again. (348 characters)

Photo of montelyo
4.77/5  rDev +19.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Viognier is my favorite white wine so I had to try this beer. The Viognier presents in both the aroma and taste. Like the wine, Noble Rot has a dry finish and is not overly sweet. The Saison fermentation comes through in the finish quite nicely. Whatever hopping was done does not interfere with but only complements the Viognier or Saison aspects, which is exactly what the drinker should expect. (405 characters)

Photo of do_ob
4.13/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Bottled on 12/16/2014. Sampled and reviewed on February 20, 2015.

Poured from a 750 ml bottle into two pilsner glasses (shared with the wife).

Poured a nice, clean pale gold with a foamy, 2 finger white head. Smells of wheat, fresh flowes, grapes, and hints of hops. Mouthfeel is dry like wine but with the weight of an ale or lager. Quite sweet, with a slight tartness. No taste of hops whatsoever. Definitely has the dry feel of a red or white wine. Hardly any aftertaste - just slight traces of sweetness.

This is one of the most unique saisons I've tried and it was a nice deviation from the traditional saison. I'm not much of a wine drinker, but my wife is. Conversely, she isn't much of a beer drinker. Somehow we both came out enjoying this quite a bit. (765 characters)

Photo of DrinkinBoy
4.13/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

L - Great bright gold in color. White head, which would was hard to get big as it was very light. However, a small amount retained very well.

S - Very light with faint notes similar to champagne/sparkling wine. Very light grain and cereal notes.

T - Very little sweetness or bitterness throughout. Works very quickly into sour/acidic like feel, again similar to champagne, which is felt mostly of side of tongue. Finish is lingering which highlights grape-ness.

F - Light/medium feel with a large amount of carbonation which fits the style.

O - This is a very interesting beer, although not extremely complex. Like most DFH brews it is efinitely worth a try, not many products our there to compare it with. (718 characters)

Photo of Crackblind
4.66/5  rDev +17.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

From tap at the brewery. A very interesting blend of ale and sparkling wine. Nose is overwhelmingly wine based but predominantly ale in mouthfeel and flavor. I was very pleasantly surprised by how much I enjoyed this. (217 characters)

Photo of jngrizzaffi
3.96/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a clear golden color with a thick foamy head. Higher than normal carbonation. Head retention is not great. Lacing is moderate. Has a sour fruit aroma that is almost sweet towards the end. Typical Belgium yeast funky aroma. You can taste a little coriander and Belgium yeast. More sour fruit, ending in a sweeter grape taste. Almost tastes like a sweeter wine at the end with a little more of a hoppy aftertaste. Good beer, but not the best saison I have had. It is definitely different. (503 characters)

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Noble Rot from Dogfish Head Brewery
89 out of 100 based on 331 ratings.