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Noble Rot - Dogfish Head Brewery

Not Rated.
Noble RotNoble Rot

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

1,383 Ratings
very good

(view ratings)
Ratings: 1,383
Reviews: 304
rAvg: 3.85
pDev: 13.25%
Wants: 98
Gots: 160 | 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: 1,383 | Reviews: 304 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of ferrari29
3.9/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Beer poured from bottle into a stemmed Stella Artois tulip-shaped glass

A - Beer body pours with a very light, almost pilsener style looking yellow straw color; thick and heavy white foam about one finger in size; stringy level of lacing formed around the edge; well-carbonated and clear body

S - Champagne-esk; white wine; dry straw smell; yeasty and slightly cheesy smell

T - Champagne, Brut taste; sweet sparkling white wine flavor; straw malt; nothing more than that; unique

M - Flat and thin body; astringent alcohol aftertaste

D - Different, but I like this one; goes great with a light meal or a pasta dish; could definitely have again; crosses the fermentation line between a beer and wine

ferrari29, Feb 20, 2012
Photo of ithinkimasofa
3/5  rDev -22.1%

ithinkimasofa, Feb 20, 2012
Photo of heelsn02
4/5  rDev +3.9%

heelsn02, Feb 19, 2012
Photo of djrn2
3/5  rDev -22.1%

djrn2, Feb 19, 2012
Photo of Miamilice
3.5/5  rDev -9.1%

Miamilice, Feb 19, 2012
Photo of peabody
4.03/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours out a clear yellow with tons of suds. Very white creamy suds! Beautiful head and some retention.
Aroma is very spicy just as a farmhouse should be. Not much alcohol present in the nose. Some yeast burn though.
Taste is sour like a white wine with spices.
Mouthfeel is very clean and the alcohol only comes to light at the very end when you can feel the phenols come up the back of the throat.
Overall this is a really nice Farmhouse Ale.

peabody, Feb 19, 2012
Photo of taigor
4/5  rDev +3.9%

taigor, Feb 19, 2012
Photo of n2185
4.05/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A: Pours a lovely clear yellow-gold with three fingers of white head that fades into a thin cap with good lacing.

S: Belgian spices, candy sugar, and bubblegum up front. White grape and pear aromas follow with a faint tart aroma.

T: Some Belgian spices and bubblegum flavors at first followed by tart and slightly sour white grape flavors. The finish is of tart fruit and sweet breads.

M: Light body with lively carbonation in the mouth, this beer is very light and refreshing despite being 9%.

O: I like this beer, overall. It's like a dry, sour white wine with a very light and refreshing body that makes its abv dangerous. Quite impressive.

n2185, Feb 18, 2012
Photo of davey101
4.4/5  rDev +14.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

2012B 750ml poured into a DFH signature glass. Uses a new bottle which is wider and shorter with 2 dogfish head logos molded into the glass.

A - Extremely clear. I held the bottle up to the light and could see right through it. Light amber body with rising carbonation. Initially the head had large frothy off-white bubbles which died down to a neat cap. Nice lacing and retention.

S - Wow. Very complex and interesting. I'm a total wine noob, but I'm picking up strong white wine notes. Intensely sweet and dry grapes followed by some Belgian yeast and biscuity malts. Crisp and lightly alcoholic finish. If I didn't know what this was I'd swear it wasn't beer.

T - I can actually tell its a beer now. Starts off with very wine like qualities. Dry and crisp grape which leads into some spice and yeast. Finish is dry with some lingering biscuity malts. Less complex than the nose, but still very interesting and unique. Mouthfeel is crisp, effervescent and super refreshing.

O - Ta Henket, Faithfull, and Hellhound made me question buying these large format limited DFH beers. Not since Bitches Brew have I felt that one of these beers is worth $15. This beer was. Its crazy how it has wine and beer notes. Very complex and unique while still remaining refreshing and delicious.

davey101, Feb 18, 2012
Photo of bluejacket74
4.03/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

750 ml bottle. Served in a tulip, the beer pours a clear light gold color with about an inch off-white head that sticks around for a little while. There's also a good amount of lacing. The brew smells like green grapes, yeast, apples, white wine, and some grain/bready malt. I think the taste is pretty much just like the aroma, but there's also some tart fruity flavors noticeable too. The flavors are more wine-like than beer-like (however I'm not exactly a wine person), but in this case it works for me. Mouthfeel/body is medium, it has moderate carbonation and it's easy enough to drink. I think this is a good brew, I'd buy it again in the future.

bluejacket74, Feb 18, 2012
Photo of jtierney89
3.5/5  rDev -9.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a bright golden color with brilliant clarity. Interesting nose, very vinous. Some detectable malt. Light and fizzy body yet full feeling in the mouth. Lots of white wine like taste. Like a sauvigoin blanc even though its viognier grapes. Tart like finish with a white wine like aftertaste. Truly drinks more like a wine than anything else and a pretty good wine at that. Unfortunately the beer aspects are covered up by the powerful grape like qualities. Not bad though, I like it. Amazing what you can do with beer.

jtierney89, Feb 18, 2012
Photo of brentk56
4/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance: A hard pour raises a rocky inch of head; if it weren't for the lazy bubbles rising from the base of the tulip, I would say it looks like the Viognier that was mixed into the wort; quite a few strands of lacing, however

Smell: Interesting to pick out the wine and beer elements in the aroma; the pilsner malt is discernable but the grape aromatics from the Viognier grapes are more prominent - a bit of tart grape/lemon and a touch of honey

Taste: A touch of pilsner malt and then the tart grape flavors take over, adding a lemony bite by mid-palate; with the Botrytis I would have thought this might be sweeter though I do get a hint of it underneath; in the aftertaste, I would swear I was drinking a glass of white wine as the finish is primarily in a vinous direction

Mouthfeel: Medium body with low to moderate carbonation; the grapes add a puckery element

Overall: These Dogfish Head experiments are usually hit or miss for me; this one is a little different as I enjoyed it but would be unlikely to seek it out again

brentk56, Feb 18, 2012
Photo of Listers
4.5/5  rDev +16.9%

Listers, Feb 18, 2012
Photo of mcallister
3.9/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

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

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%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

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%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 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%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

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

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%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4.5

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%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

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

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
Noble Rot from Dogfish Head Brewery
87 out of 100 based on 1,383 ratings.