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Duchesse De Bourgogne - Brouwerij Verhaeghe

Not Rated.
Duchesse De BourgogneDuchesse De Bourgogne

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
93
outstanding

3,156 Ratings
THE BROS
94
outstanding

(view ratings)
Ratings: 3,156
Reviews: 1,355
rAvg: 4.16
pDev: 13.7%
Wants: 144
Gots: 328 | FT: 8
Brewed by:
Brouwerij Verhaeghe visit their website
Belgium

Style | ABV
Flanders Red Ale |  6.00% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes/Commercial Description:
Belgian top-fermented reddish-brown ale, a blend of 8 and 18 months old beers following the careful maturation in oak casks.

(Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 10-15-2001)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 3,156 | Reviews: 1,355 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of nickynick
4.03/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This beer poured a very nice reddish brown with an excellent white head. The smell was of yeast and tart cherries. The taste was sweet and tart. Full of red berries in the flavor. Sour cherries was the dominant flavor of this beer. Mouthfeel was good. Drinkability was also very nice. Overall this was a very nice beer. I enjoyed this beer a great deal because of the flavors.

nickynick, Sep 08, 2008
Photo of Maltmaiden
4.03/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Beautiful burgundy. Medium carbonation. Clear. Small head that goes away quickly and leaves a tiny bit of film and lacing.

Smell sour cherries. Toasted malts. Molases. Lemon.

Taste sour black cherries. Toasted malts and finishes with some breadiness (which I really like). Ruby red grapefruit. Winey. Green apple.

Mouthfeel it sticky. Nice carbonation.

Overall: I guess I am just new to this style but I was just not a huge fan of the tart/sweet taste. I am waiting for a headache to kick in from the sugar.

Maltmaiden, Nov 04, 2012
Photo of Cozzatoad
4.03/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

750ml bottle, export version (with sugar added to balance sourness)

A- Very wine like. Deep red (almost brown), more bright and on the red side if seen through light. Little head forms and it disappears almost immediately, leaving near no lacing at all

S- Very delicate, maybe even too much. An acidic red wine aroma that also has some dark fruits hints

T- Very interesting. Sourness is right there but it is extremely delicate and at the same time you can definitely feel the sweetness from the sugar. Overall, the taste is some sort of meeting point between a very sweet and woody wine and a beer (malts are in fact clearly detectable, and they bring some very nice dark fruit tones). If i'm not wrong i also find some chocolate

M- The beer is very light on the body and little carbonated. That means an incredibly soft and smooth feel that fills your mouth despite being so delicate. I don't know wheter that's just me but i kinda feel like this is even too soft and delicate, a stronger character would be welcomed in a beer that feels so much like wine

T- I have nothnig to blame with the sourness in the taste, it is actually very delicate and nicely balanced. I have some issues with the sourness in the aftertaste though. Overall this is still a pleasing beer

Many say this a "love or hate" beer. I do neither, i enjoyed it but i don't think this is such a great one

Cozzatoad, Mar 13, 2011
Photo of beerphilosopher
4.03/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A Belgian Flanders Red poured into a tall chalice. Presents itself a deep ruby brown with a thin pale tan head that dissipates quickly, leaving a fine lace in the glassware. Active carbonation bubbles are evident. The nose is, to me, much like a good gueuze albeit a bit more subdued. Tart, over ripe fruits, port, slight cider venegar notes, and a hint of spice. The palate is quite sour up front, causing the mouth to water instantaneously. The sourness quickly yields to a strong sweetness, delivering a taste of confectioner's sugar, cider venegar, cherries, and baker's yeast all at once. The sweetness diminishes again in the mouth after swollowing, reminding you of the sour beginnings. Really a complex play in the mouth. If you've not experienced a Gueuze or a Flanders Red before, this interplay may be a bit much for you. The brewers achieve this by blending both young and old (cask aged) ales to create these complex beers. Once you've aquired the taste for "sour" ales, however, you'll be hooked. The mouthfeel is medium, at best, and the finish is sweet mixed with sour, and lingers long. The feel would be a bit cloying were it not for the aggressive carbonation found here. Intentional ... I'd bet on it. A very good Flanders ale, and one I wish I could find again more readily. This one took a trip to Indianapolis recently to find. These ales are a challenge to some, and very well may not be for everyone ... but if you like a good Lambic, Gueuze or Flanders Red, this is one that will not only please you, but may well be the best exemplar of the style. Terrific.

beerphilosopher, Dec 31, 2006
Photo of bmwats
4.03/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured into a tulip.

A: Dark brown color with reddish hue. Foam plumed out of the bottle when I opened it, but I can't say whether this is characteristic or not as I only had one. Overall it is lightly carbonated and pours into a 3 finger frothy, cratered, off white head. Leaves bubbly residual as it settles into a layer of carbonation on the surface. Heavy carbonation buildup where the surface meets the edge of the glass. Leaves spotty, but significant lacing as you drink.

S: Malt, molasses, and peat. Really sweet nose.

T: Light malt flavor, hints of cherry, cranberry, and peat.

M: Carbonation infiltrates mouth. Fruity flavor, then light maltiness, and the pungent peat lingers for the aftertaste. Light but syrupy feel.

D: Quality drinkability. Good sipping beer. Good flavor, no strong alcohol taste.

This is a really distinctive brew. Sweet, but unlike your lambics, the sweetness is offset by the malt and pungent peat. Really distinctive flavor, really good atmosphere, really good drinkability. One of the only downsides is the smell is almost overwhelmingly sweet. Overall very good quaff. I highly recommend trying this one if you have the opportunity.

bmwats, Dec 27, 2008
Photo of sapper1252
4.03/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a 750 mL bottle. Good carbonation. Mild barnyard smell, definitely some cherries.

Taste was mildly sour, with cherry sweetness. I was expecting more sour.

A good Flanders Red, but I've definitely had better. I did find it pleasant, however.

sapper1252, Nov 16, 2012
Photo of smcolw
4.03/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Very red and very clear

Deep malt aromas, lots of cherries. Very close in aroma to a Framboise.

The taste has lots of cherries, quite sweet. So much so that I re-read the bottle to see if it was infused with fruit. Again, this is very much like a Framboise...without the lip-smacking sourness. Tastes more potent than the alcohol indicates (6% abv). The body is full, carbonation is moderate. The aftertaste is a light tartness that diminishes slowly.

This is an unusual Belgian in that it doesn't have the typical flavors/aromas. Still, it is very good. Think heavy lambic with less tart.

smcolw, Sep 29, 2006
Photo of bosco7
4.03/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

33cl bottle purchased from BevMo. Kind of dusty and a best before date of 9-9-06 (today is 4-29-07) not too worried.

Dull dark brown with some red. Nice head retention.

Red wine like aromas, cherries, oak, and lots of twang.

Sweet upfront with heavy cherry flavors, prune, and finishes with a mild tartness. Very nice balance between sweet and sour components. Tastes great. Although I forget that I am drinking a beer.

Chewy mouthfeel with almost divine carbonation tickling the tongue. It is a well attenuated beer with great balance making it very drinkable, however I could only drink one. Very interesting; I have had nothing like this beer before. Some might be turned off by the sourness but I love it.

bosco7, Apr 30, 2007
Photo of rayjay
4.03/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bought at City Beer in S.F. and poured into a wit beer glass. Best before 18-10-07.

Nice pour. No sediment, acive carbonation and sudsy head. Deep red like cherry cough syrup.

Smells like cherries and vinegar, very nice and pleasant but bold at the same time. Grainy smell like gueuze ale.

Cherry candy taste dominates. Tart and snappy but also very sweet. Woody and metallic. Others have said Coca-Cola, which I can see but may not have picked it out myself.

Mouthfeel is a bit thick from the sugars, and the carbonation is a bit low which makes it feel even thicker. Chalky finish.

I enjoy this beer and would always be happy to drink one. Refreshing but too sweet. I wish this style was more widely available, I have only had 3 examples of this style and one was from Colorado.

rayjay, Aug 24, 2006
Photo of nephilae
4.03/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

A - Reddish brown, very clear. Has a minimal head, few bubbles. Thin consistency which show little cling to the glass.

S - Smell is strong. Very oaky and fruity, showing a great similarity to a tawny port.

T - Very sweet for a flemish red. Has the characteristic sour flavor, but well-balanced with the sweetness. The taste reminds me a lot of lemon and coke.

MF - Crisp, clean, leaves mouth feeling slightly dry from the sourness. Its thin consistency doesn't leave any residue.

D - This is not my favorite style of ale, so I can't say it would be a staple. For the style, it's one of the better balanced flavors, which is not overly sour. I would favor this over others.

nephilae, Dec 22, 2008
Photo of Domingo
4.03/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Had this on tap at the Falling Rock.
Arrived a mahogany brown, with reddish notes in the sun (I had it outside).
The smell reminded me a lot of vinegar and really sour citrus. In all honesty, I was almost scared off by the smell. I figured it was going to be like drinking a lambic crossed with some malt vinegar.
The taste on the other hand was REALLY good. It's sweet like brown sugar and berries. A little bit of sourness in the finish, sort of like a citrus flavor. It does have a little vinegar-type flavor, but it's defintiely more along the balsamic lines. Stange how the flavor and smells are almost totally unconnected! That seems to be the hallmark of a good Belgian brew - 2 totally unique flavors.
I could definitely drink more of this brew. Once you get used to the smell and taste being unique entities, this is a terrific brew that you can sip and enjoy. Lots of different flavors going on.
A definite winner.

Domingo, Sep 10, 2006
Photo of Gushue3
4.03/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A 2 finger head quickly forms that has some nice retention. The body is a deep red and has some smaller carbonation bubbles rushing up to the head.

S Acidic and slightly tart upfront with some wood and sweet and tart apples

T Sweet and light tartness come forward right away and a light, sweet berries creep up toward the end. Well balanced and smooth drinking.

M Lighter feel in the mouth with high carbonation.

O Nice beer. I'm newer to sour/wild/etc and this one had nice tastes that complimented each other nicely.

Gushue3, Dec 29, 2011
Photo of Anthony1
4.03/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured into a chalice/snifter. It was a dark brown with flecks of red. It had a tan, two-finger head that left nice rings of lace. It smelled of sour cherries and malt. It tasted very sour with a little sweet kick. There was a good dosage of malt, too. It was crisp and sharp. It was medium-bodied beer.

Anthony1, Mar 10, 2011
Photo of birchstick
4.03/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - pours a reddish brown with a really nice looking head sitting atop it

N - nose has vinegar and cherries - good for the style

T - starts off with some tart cherry, but this is quickly overwhelmed by some vinegar flavors. Finishes with cherries and vinegar flavors. Really tasty.

M - full and creamy, goes down smoothly

D - really solid Flanders. I have passed over this beer too many times in the past and will not make that mistake as much as I have. I don't know how to beat this in this style.

birchstick, Nov 15, 2011
Photo of Avagadro
4.03/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A: garnet in color with a cream head that lasts through the entire experience. The head sticks to the glass in rings, marking your progress.

S: aroma consists of cherries along with the typical funkiness that comes with most sour ales. Overall, the bouquet is quite shy.

T: off-dry with hints of cherries, fruitcake, and sourness blending together for a delightful experience.

M: thin body with a decent amount of carbonation.

D: a delightful example of the flanders red style. Good for those looking to get in to sour ales, since this one is somewhat tame.

Avagadro, Dec 17, 2009
Photo of sonicdescent
4.03/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Purchased this as Vintage Estate in Boardman, OH. Couldn't wait to try this as I had been bred to expect the sour to eat my face off. While it wasn't really that sour, it was still damn solid.

Appears a very dark red with that great belgian head and lace.

Smells like nail polish at first! After you keep trying, you can get some sour apples though.

Taste isn't nearly as sour as the nose would have you believe, though you still get hints of something I can only describe as nail polish remover. The strange thing is, it works. Light sour ints of grape and apple.

Mouth is medium with relatively high carbonation.

This is a good beer and I look forward to trying it again, though I can't see where all the sour hype comes from! This is nothing to a Cantillion Kriek.

sonicdescent, Apr 14, 2009
Photo of headlessclown
4.03/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

25cl bottle poured into glass
Date on bottle: 06/10/2012

A: Pours red/dark brown. Moderate head retention, no lacing.

S: Funky. Like a weak vinegar. A bit on the unpleasant side.

T: Excellent balance of tartness and sweetness. Very flavoursome.

M: Medium feel and carbonation.

D: The 25cl bottles are far too small for this beer. Very drinkable.

headlessclown, Jan 23, 2011
Photo of Darkmagus82
4.03/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Poured from bottle into a pint glass

Appearance – The beer pours a chestnut color with some ruby highlights seen shinning throughout. Upon pouring there is a small white head that fades relatively quickly leaving only a trace of lace.

Smell- The aroma is of dark fruit and sourness. The dark fruits are mainly of a cherry aroma, but have hints of raisin and prune mixed within. Along with these sweeter smells comes a good dose of a sour and tart aroma of a mix of apple cider vinegar mixed with some sour lemon.

Taste – The flavor of the brew is a nice blending of sweet and sour/tart. Upfront there is a good showing of a sweeter cherry flavor mixed with some lighter notes of sour grapes. As the flavor advances the sweetness fades slightly while the sour grape flavor grows stronger. Some hints of a yeasty taste begin coming to the tongue as well as a more sour and tart vinegar taste. In the end a rather balanced sweet and sour fruited vinegar flavor is left to linger on the tongue.

Mouthfeel- The body of the brew is on the thinner side with a carbonation level that is rather average to slightly below average. The thinner body and moderate carbonation are fantastic for keeping the brew on the more drinkable side, but while still providing enough body to support the sour and sweet flavors of the brew.

Overall – A very nice sour that is extremely drinkable and very tasty. One of the most balanced and enjoyable sours I have ever had.

Darkmagus82, May 09, 2013
Photo of eduardolinhalis
4.03/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

750ml bottle poured in a Chimay chalice.

A: Amber color with a huge fluffy head. Good retention and some nice lacings left

S: Very fruity, grapes mainly. Malts and oak. Metallic. Smell of Lambic yeasts all around. Very Flamish Red Ale

T: Sweet and sour. Fruity. Malt, oak and Belgium yeasts. Reminds a Lambic

M: Light body. Very carbonated. Nice sour aftertaste

D: Delicious beer. Duchesse is something between a Faro Lambic and a Barley Wine. Quite easy drinking. Interesting experience. After the first glass I though: "too sweet and perhaps too 'winy'"... After the second glass I felt in love :p... Very drinkable, 750ml gone like water...

eduardolinhalis, Oct 23, 2009
Photo of jampics2
4.03/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

On tap @ the Beer Engine. This is my sweetheart's go-to beer for kegs and eggs! Gotta love that!!

Looks decent - reddish color with a nice small head. Just nothing outstanding.

Smell is good - for the style, I find this to be one of the more appetizing noses as some Flanders reds are rather putrid. This smells of vinegar, cherries, and oak.

Taste is also quite nice. Really sweet, with the balsamic vinegar and cherry notes dominating. I get a touch of belgian malt and some oak, also a hint of lemon - otherwise, it's a straight-ahead sour vinegary cherry fest of a beer.

Mouthfeel is this beer's strongest suit IMO. Light, crisp, and perfectly carbonated. The finish is rather remarkable as well.

Overall, I dig this beer, it's everything a Flanders Red should be. A touch too sweet for revisiting a few times in a sitting. But a nice sour and something that has served as a bridge into the genre for many.

jampics2, Jul 26, 2010
Photo of jettjon
4.03/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

From the 750ml caged cork bottle, attractively packaged with a nice portrait on the bottle. The wife commented on it, so it must be nice. Cork dated best by June 2008. Decants with a pop, into the cervoise, a dark ruby red with heavy carbonation of large bubbles cascading up. Thick, heavy head of tight bubbles, about one finger thick and going nowhere fast. Good, clingy sheet-like lacing. Nose dominated by a definite yet not overwhelming sour-cherry scent. A bit of musty, earthy yeast, and perhaps a hint of alcohol. I was prepared for a sour flavor explosion, but I was greeted instead by a subdued cherry-like tartness tempered by sweet malts, almost candy-like, but not overly sweet. Great sweet-tart cherry flavor; I’m constantly amazed that there is no fruit used in crafting this style. Mild hoppy bitterness on the backside, kind of apple Jolly Rancher finish. Mouth is of medium viscosity with tons of gentle carbonation making things go down smooth. Sticky, short of syrupy, but the sugar’s there nonetheless. Drinkability is quite good, surprisingly; I had no problem downing the bottle, something I never would have considered with Rodenbach’s Grand Cru.

Overall: OK, I’m not a huge fan of Flanders ales or lambics, but this one is understated enough to make me try more of the style. I consumed this sample a full year before the end of the “best by” date on the cork: I wonder what a bit of cellaring would yield. Grab one of these if you have a chance, definitely recommended.

jettjon, Jun 12, 2007
Photo of djbreezy
4.03/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured out of a 750ml bottle into a snifter.

appearance - dark and clear reddish brown, carbonation crawling up the side of the glass, big retention on the edge of the glass with yeast spotting on top, lacing crawls down the glass

smell - wine-like nose, vinegar, dark fruit, blended, sour, rich oak

taste - sour and tart cherries, sweet grape, yeast, rich oak barrel complexity

mouthfeel - heavily carbonated, full bodied, smooth, tingle from the carbonation

drinkability - remarkably complex, very rich and flavorful, the excessive carbonation and the initial vinegar in the nose are this beer's biggest flaws but the rest of the ale is very well crafted, amazing flavor and great value

djbreezy, May 31, 2010
Photo of pjwilson
4.03/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

second time drinking this beer. Time for a review. This is my first Flemish Red, but it seems to have

Appearance: Red. Tons of lace and decent head.
Smell: Funk. Cherries and sourness
Taste: it's really good. Be prepared if you've never had the style before because it's whole other beast from most other beers. You don't taste any hops. It's quite tart and sour like those sour candies. Beneath the sourness however is a malt backbone that is similar to a amber ale.
Mouthfeel: It's thin and watery but in a good way. I like the prickly carbonation on the tounge.
Drinkabiltly: this is a slow drinker despite the wateryness and relatively low alcohol.

This makes for a great summer beer. Take it slow so it goes from cold to cellar temp. This is the only flemish red I can find and i'll pounch on the chance to try another.

pjwilson, Jul 21, 2005
Photo of sunofneurot
4.04/5  rDev -2.9%

sunofneurot, Sep 07, 2014
Photo of Evango
4.04/5  rDev -2.9%

Evango, Sep 14, 2014
Duchesse De Bourgogne from Brouwerij Verhaeghe
93 out of 100 based on 3,156 ratings.