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Noble Rot - Dogfish Head Brewery

Not Rated.
Noble RotNoble Rot

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

1,359 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 1,359
Reviews: 303
rAvg: 3.85
pDev: 13.25%
Wants: 100
Gots: 158 | 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: 1,359 | Reviews: 303 | Display Reviews Only:
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%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

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%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

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%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

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%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

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%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

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%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

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%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

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
Photo of perrymarcus
3.93/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

750ml bottle served in a snifter.

pours a bell-clear, light golden / straw yellow tone while yielding a healthy finger of white head; moderate retention and lacing.

as its preceded repution indicated, the nose here is definitely reminiscent of a white wine. grape, a touch citric; on the dry side, and a bit tart.

flavor delivers more of the same. overtly vinous with grape and a little citrus. tart but not puckering. medium bodied mouthfeel with slightly above-average carbonation.

overall, a unique brew to be sure. interesting to try and i'm glad to have done so. that said, i'm not a huge fan. would be open to another visit but i won't seek it out.

perrymarcus, Feb 14, 2012
Photo of thecheapies
3.7/5  rDev -3.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Noble Rot. Served in Duchesse goblets.

Very pale straw color with a bleachy head that dissipated to a gassy film. Great clarity.

Smells semi-dry and vinous like pinot gris with some woodiness and barnyard funk. Smells like wet hay, fermented grapes, apricot, and some nuttiness.

Signature DFH ale flavor, reminiscent of their Ancient Ales. Tangy and tart fruitiness (white grapes, pit fruits, gooseberry), proud yeast character, thin hop bitterness (citric and floral), and wet feel (tangy and a bit too sweet, not enough carb to handle the acidity). Some white peach, wildflowers, dead grass, rainwater, and woody chardonnay.

This was fantastic to try. I wonder how this beer would evolve. Interestingly, one of the only imperial bottles from DFH that does not say 'Ages Well'. Worth a try.

thecheapies, Feb 14, 2012
Photo of DrinkSlurm
3.88/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from tap into flute. Champagne looking color and foam. Nice lacing.
Smells of fruity champagne more than a beer. Looks like champage.
Taste is very nice and mild. But its so hard to think its a beer. Its fruity, bubbley...and like champagne. Its a very interesting brew. While it tastes fantastic, it doesn't taste like a beer, saison, or whathaveyou. I'm glad I got to try it and dfh is awesome for doing this. I would imagine thhis beer to lead a very important toast :)

DrinkSlurm, Feb 14, 2012
Photo of PuFtonLyfe
3.5/5  rDev -9.1%

PuFtonLyfe, Feb 13, 2012
Photo of ADTaber
4/5  rDev +3.9%

ADTaber, Feb 13, 2012
Photo of jayfro70
4.18/5  rDev +8.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A: This is the most wine-y beer I've ever had. Never had anything even in the ballpark. Appearance is very light with a champagne-y color.
S: Not much of an odor to this one. Smells light and slightly fruity.
T: Tastes like a mixture of a wheat beer and champagne, with a fruity background favor
M: Confusing mouthfeel. I keep expecting the bubbliness of champagne to go along with the flavor, but not getting it. Still the carbonation is light with small bubbles.
O: This is a beer that I could turn to when I'm uncertain as to whether I would like a glass of wine or a beer. It hits strong notes of each. Another interesting beer by dfh that is really in a category all of it's own.

jayfro70, Feb 12, 2012
Photo of rootbeerman
3.88/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: pours golden and crystal clear. Initial head was a finger or so thick and fell with minimal lacing to a thin layer.
S: unique to say the least. I really don't know enough about grapes or wine. But smells more grape/wine like than beer.
T: true to dogfish motto this is off centered. Tastes like a lighter version of midas touch, but has a more tart than sweet flavor.
M: very light on the palate. But the grape does seem to linger.
O: sip over a long while, expect wine flavor with beer on the back end

rootbeerman, Feb 12, 2012
Photo of cindyjeffsmith
4.33/5  rDev +12.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

appearance: one of the lightest colored beers I've ever had. light yellow with white full head on the pour.
smell: Tart citrus and yeast. A very bright and unique nose.
taste: The taste really comes together. All the above that's in the nose with a nice dry and tart finish. I really dig Dogfish experiments even when they don't hit a home run...this is a very nice brew regardless of the creation notes.
overall: A unique and worthy brew. Respect, Sam and the DFH crew.

cindyjeffsmith, Feb 12, 2012
Photo of mjaggers
4/5  rDev +3.9%

mjaggers, Feb 11, 2012
Photo of jk3
2.5/5  rDev -35.1%

jk3, Feb 11, 2012
Photo of BeerLover99
3.78/5  rDev -1.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: straw/shiny/bubbly body, 2 finger white head,
excellent lacing

S: yeast, floral, light green grape, lemon zest

T: lemon, white grape, yeast, floral, mild
slick finish

M: med body, bubbly/prick on tongue
semi-dry/hint of slick mouth

O: Interesting, don't love it, but fascinating.
Another great and often forgotten style
for the summer months.


BeerLover99, Feb 11, 2012
Noble Rot from Dogfish Head Brewery
87 out of 100 based on 1,359 ratings.