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Noble Rot - Dogfish Head Brewery

Not Rated.
Noble RotNoble Rot

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

1,320 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 1,320
Reviews: 296
rAvg: 3.85
pDev: 13.51%
Wants: 98
Gots: 154 | FT: 4
Brewed by:
Dogfish Head Brewery visit their website
Delaware, United States

Style | ABV
Saison / Farmhouse Ale |  9.00% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes/Commercial Description:
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 added by: paulozanello on 02-20-2011)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 1,320 | Reviews: 296 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of mcallister
3.9/5  rDev +1.3%

Pours a very light and clear hay or straw color. A large white head expectedly explodes up the glass leaving a thick lace behind.

Not getting much of the botrytis but the usual pepper, yeast and spice aromas you would expect from a saison. Very clean and vibrant with some citrusy fruit esters.

Ahh there we go much more acidity from the grapes and vibrant bitterness of hops, very spicy, and full of fruity flavors. A hint of honey suckle, nectarine, and lemon peel. Yeasty and delicious with pepper and some light phenolic notes.

Mouth shows great carbonation and is creamy in the middle. Long finish is fantastic.

mcallister, Feb 18, 2012
Photo of Cyberkedi
3.93/5  rDev +2.1%

Comes out of the bottle a clear, slightly wan solar yellow with a thick, fluffy white head. OK, so I prefer dark beers - I'll cut this some slack since it's a saison and not a porter. The head does leave some generous lacing - that's a half point right there. Aroma is robust and fruity, mainly apple and grape with a hint of banana and just a whisper of citrus, as well as a yeasty and slightly earthy undertone. Flavor fills the mouth with lip-puckering sour apple and yeast, plus subtle grape, malt and butterscotch notes. Texture is firm-bodied, edgy and lively, sour all the way down to the tummy. Though this is technically a saison, I recommend it to all lovers of sour beers - if sour is your, ahem, cup of tea, you should enjoy this one.

Cyberkedi, Feb 18, 2012
Photo of burring
4/5  rDev +3.9%

burring, Feb 18, 2012
Photo of RuckusDu
3.38/5  rDev -12.2%

A - Not expecting this one. I mean I knew I could see through the brown bottle with beer inside, but this is light. Poured a big 3ish finger head of white foam. Body is dead clear and straw yellow - BMC light.

S - Very effervescent. Floral and a little sweet. Smells a lot like BMC.

T - Interesting. Definitely winey. Some white wine tartness. I only pick up the saison when I think about it. It is really a straight up mix between wine and beer. Even if you average a 5% saison with a 13% white wine, you get 9%. Not sure I'm all that impressed with it.

M - Strong carbonation and light body. Just as it looks.

O - There have been a lot of these wine beers coming out recently and I just can't really get into them. The wine kind of overpowers and is just not that good. I might try aging it for a bit, but right now it is not worth the $.

RuckusDu, Feb 18, 2012
Photo of bigfnjoe
4.25/5  rDev +10.4%

Poured from a bottle into a Dogfish snifter

A- pours a crystal clear, very light shade of yellow with a two finger white head. TONS of carbonation. It looks like a prototypical saison, but much lighter. Not a bad thing.

S- getting a lot of the grape aroma, and some spiciness from the yeast as well. Very nice

T- the grape flavor is in the forefront...getting a lot of the winey characteristics. Not overly sweet either....really good

M- very thin body...typical saison, as I'd expect

O- this is really, really good. A unique take on a saison

bigfnjoe, Feb 18, 2012
Photo of stephenjmoore
3.98/5  rDev +3.4%

A- Light straw color with a thin white head. Very transparent and bubbles float to the top from the bottom.

S- Strong grape and spicy Belgian yeast notes dominate.

T- Tastes exactly like wine. Besides the head and the hint of Belgian yeast, it would be hard to discern from a white wine. Grapes come through with tiny hint of spicy Belgian yeast.

M- Very dry with some carbonation. Leaves some stickiness after each sip.

O- Completely different than anything I have had before. I though Midas Touch was close to a wine, but this one is very wine-like. Very unique, not a good choice if you are looking for malt and hops.

stephenjmoore, Feb 17, 2012
Photo of Kranders
4.43/5  rDev +15.1%

I really enjoyed this beer. Had this right after a big test. Poured a super clean, light golden color with minimal head. Very complex aroma, full of fruit and sour, with hints of wine in the backdrop. The taste falls somewhere between a sour and a white wine. Clean, oaky, with a bit of sour that rounds it all out into something fantastic. Lasts just a little bit on the tongue for an overall awesome beer.

Kranders, Feb 17, 2012
Photo of horrorspecialty
4/5  rDev +3.9%

horrorspecialty, Feb 17, 2012
Photo of Jimmys
4.18/5  rDev +8.6%

750mL into tulip. bottled in 2012. my first logo'ed glass bottle from DF.

A: bright gold. surprisingly clear body. some lazy carbonation can be seen rising to the surface, but they are moving as slow as i have seen bubbles go. bright white head looks good and has some nice retention/lacing.

S: smells more like a white wine than a beer. a bit of oaky. a lot grapey. some light bready malt works its way in between the fruit, but this one is mostly wine-like.

T: the grape must is strong here. starts sharp and acidic right on the tip of my tongue. finish is rich with munich-y malt. a little floral in the finish as well. dandelions.

M: average carbonation with a very prickly mouthfeel. i would say medium bodied even considering the 9%abv.

D: the grape aroma/flavor is so strong, this almost drinks like a watered down glass of white wine. even the appearance is a bit wine-like. tough to find the saison aspect behind all these grape notes, but it is certainly there on the palate. a very unique product and one that i am really enjoying.

Jimmys, Feb 17, 2012
Photo of trxxpaxxs
4.03/5  rDev +4.7%

A: Pours a thin piss pale yellow with a huge amount of pure white head. THe foam takes awhile to settle, and there is a ton of lacing left on the glass as it drinks. This beer looks like an adjunct lager, but with a frothier head.

S: I'm picking up a lot of grains, some spice, some definite wine notes, and some nice sour green apple notes. I know what it is, but it definitely reminds me of a saison mixed with white wine. I'm excited to taste it.

T: IT starts off spicy with that familiar saion like quality. The grains swirl on the palate with a tart green apple like acidity starting to join the party. The finish is extremely wine-like. Flavors of dry white grapes and booze make for an interesting finish.

M: Light bodied beer. It starts off wet and coating, but finishes dry and astringent.

O: This is easily one of the most interesting beers I've ever had. It basically starts out like a saison and finishes like a white wine. My palate and brain hurt, but I enjoyed this offering. I've never had anything quite like it.

trxxpaxxs, Feb 17, 2012
Photo of DestinyRidge
4.85/5  rDev +26%

A - Brilliant color... Crystal Clear with a lot of carbonation. Nice lace

S - Some wine notes. Almost a spice but some Citrus that reminds me of the Viognier

T - Tons of Wine notes. Crisp and Clean, almost creamy. I Like the malt Awesome finish. VERY Nice

MF - Great Mouth feel.. I'd say medium body with nice carbonation. very wine like though

Overall - Great Beer/Wine?...and a definitely a "sorta" saison. maybe the most interesting beer I've had in a long long time... I'm interested to try and pair this with some different foods. Very drinkable, and i will be having this again.

Serving type: 750mL bottle

Reviewed on: 02-16-2012 5:30pm

DestinyRidge, Feb 17, 2012
Photo of aleckpa
4/5  rDev +3.9%

aleckpa, Feb 17, 2012
Photo of cinserrajr
4/5  rDev +3.9%

cinserrajr, Feb 17, 2012
Photo of avalon07
4.1/5  rDev +6.5%

A: Poured from a bottle to a pint glass. Had a pale yellow color and a clear consistency. There was an inch and a half of foamy, fairly long-lasting head. Good lacing.

S: A very vinous smell, dominated by the grape element, with some malt as well.

T: Like the aroma, the taste was predominantly a grape one. It was like wine, with a malty finish, and a hint of grain thrown in for good measure. An unusual flavor that's oddly likeable.

M: A good amount of carbonation with a slick finish. Medium-bodied.

O: Certainly not like any saison I've had before - not sure I'd even categorize it as such. Nonetheless, it's an oddly drinkable, easy to like beer.

avalon07, Feb 16, 2012
Photo of Rojopunk
4/5  rDev +3.9%

A - Light yellow with a lot of carbonation and a very nice amount of lacy very little head.

S - This beer smelled very much like champagne

T - Tastes very much like a wine

Mouth feel - Is a medium body

Overall I'd say this brew is 90% wine 10% beer. The only notes one can notice of a beer in this brew is the very nice lacy , the small bit of head and the mouth feel on the way down. I love dogfish head but this brew is hardly beer at all as a wine or spirit it is top notch ! That's why id did not rate this beer in any thing over a 4.

Rojopunk, Feb 16, 2012
Photo of chakadrum
4.73/5  rDev +22.9%

I had this at a festival at some point in the last year or two - I never expected they'd bottle it. When I saw it in the store, I had to grab a bottle (750ml).

I think you could convince a lot of people this was some unique style of wine rather than a beer. The taste reminds me very much of champagne and is much cheaper than something like Deus so that is a huge plus for me. It is a little tart, a little grape, a little barn.

Nice lacing and an incredibly clear crystal-yellow color.

Good sour/wine nose.

I have no doubt I will buy this one again. A fun unique saison.

chakadrum, Feb 16, 2012
Photo of buyBinboaVodka
4.4/5  rDev +14.3%

A - Poured from a 750ml bottle into a tulip glass. This beer pours a golden yellow with a slight haze in it. The lucious white head reatins sticky lacing around the glass and there are little carbonation bubbles noticable.

S - The nose is much more subdued than I had expected. I get some yeast notes and without a doubt wine smell. Don't ask me the grapes, I am no wine expert.

T - The taste was just what I might expect from a beer that I heard was a cross between a wine and beer. Some yeasty flavors up front followed by citrus notes and finished off with a crisp dry wine like finish.

M - Spiritly carbonated with dry finish and flavor that seems to evaporate off the palate.

O - This was an awesome beer. I had it paired with a nice flank steak, mushroom risotto and carmelized onions. I wish I could get my hands on some more of this beer.

buyBinboaVodka, Feb 16, 2012
Photo of tatums1984
4/5  rDev +3.9%

tatums1984, Feb 16, 2012
Photo of jeffoatess
4/5  rDev +3.9%

jeffoatess, Feb 15, 2012
Photo of jlove5
4/5  rDev +3.9%

jlove5, Feb 15, 2012
Photo of inlimbo77
3.85/5  rDev 0%

750ml bottle (new DFH glass bottles). Bottled in 2012. Poured into Lost Abbey snifter/tulip glass.

A: Pours a crystal clear yellow white wine like color. Small tiny bubbles off the bottom of the glass. Really looks like champagne bubbles. Two fingers of rocky white head. Leaves some lacing tracks, but not tons.

S: Definitely smells like a Saison. Not overly funky or anything though. Nice white grape notes, viognier and pinot gris hints probably. Maybe some spicy white pepper notes on the back end.

T: This is actually really good (if you like white wine). You get some nice tartness on the front of the tongue. Typical of a Saison. But again not overly funky. Then you get those Belgian yeasty notes in the middle of the mouth. And alot of white wine character. Dry white wine finish.

M: Light to medium. Thought the carbonation would be higher.

O: Not bad for a DFH project of late. Probably the best DFH beer I have had since Bitches Brew. I like where they were going with this and wonder if time will change this beer at all. Might pick up another bottle to see how it ages.

inlimbo77, Feb 15, 2012
Photo of Paymygasbill77
4.63/5  rDev +20.3%

Poured from a 750ml into a snifter.

A: This beer poured a crystal clear light amber color with champagne like carbonation. The head started out about 2 inches and dissapated into nothing. This looks and pours more like a sparkling wine than a beer.

S: Dry fruit and funk.

T: Out of this world! Sam has done it again with this one. Very little to no hops. This reminds me more of a not so sour Geuze than a Saison or wine. It starts off with a bit of Dry white grapes and moves to a slightly sweet and funky flavor and finishes bone dry with funk and a carbonated bite. This leaves me wanting more.

M:Light and refreshing.

O: Fantstic! I am buying a few more bottles to hold on to. I bet this ages very well!

Paymygasbill77, Feb 15, 2012
Photo of Chaney
3.9/5  rDev +1.3%

Man o man... If this is a saison, then I'm a male canine's bitch.

I had this on tap at the alehouse in Fall Church.

Served in a snifter.

A: This poured a crystal clear, slightly darker than straw color, with a substantial 2 finger head.

S: Sort of like a fruit cider, and this was totally hard to put my finger on. I got some honey and bright fruit, but that's about it.

T: Okay, the wine side of this one really came at the end. When the liquid finally hit my throat and esophagus, the fruit/alcohol component coated it hard... much more so that beer does. Think hard apple cider.

M: Measly carbonated and totally in a wino's wheelhouse. The lacing was nothing to write home about.

O: A fine white beer-wine, for sure. If that's you thing, then you'll enjoy this one.

Chaney, Feb 15, 2012
Photo of cantfindme
3.5/5  rDev -9.1%

cantfindme, Feb 15, 2012
Photo of heff316
3/5  rDev -22.1%

heff316, Feb 14, 2012
Noble Rot from Dogfish Head Brewery
87 out of 100 based on 1,320 ratings.