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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

3,414 Ratings
THE BROS
94
outstanding

(view ratings)
Ratings: 3,414
Reviews: 1,372
rAvg: 4.16
pDev: 13.7%
Wants: 161
Gots: 410 | 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: 3,414 | Reviews: 1,372 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of JohnnyHopps
4.43/5  rDev +6.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

This delightful Flanders Red Ale was served on tap on 11/11/11 at Beer Geeks in Highland, IN. It was my third beverage on the evening, but by far the best.

Radiating a deep brown-amber hue, the ale was served in flute glass with an inch head. A fruity-sour aroma tickled the nose without much effort. The aroma was quite potent. As with most good sour ales, the taste was potent. A sour fruitness was the immediate impression; this included hints of tart cranberry and raspberry. The sensations continued into the tart and fruity aftertaste. The carbonation was a little more aggressive than I would have expected, but this did not subtract from the experience. Duchesse is a delicious and refreshing experience.

Photo of rarbring
4.35/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A clear red ruby beer, a small off-white head, some lacing and good curtains.

The smell is cask y oak, red vinegar, some cured meat and stable.

The taste is sweet, but fresh, fruity, dark bread, red vinegar, some acetic acid notes.

A light carbonation, small foamy bubbles, soft and refreshing, a light sour dry finish.

A very invigorating and well balanced Flemish red ale. This was beer 1000 here at beeradvocate.

Photo of Monkeyknife
4.22/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from the tap a dark purplish-black with a huge creamy tan head. Lots of sticky lacing left behind.

Aroma of dark cherries, earth and an aroma I can only describe as plastic raincoat.

Tart taste of dark cherries, red wine vinegar, fig and candy sugar.

Medium bodied and dry with a moderate carbonation.

I really enjoyed this beer but found that with the tartness, one was enough.

Photo of nighthawk
4.47/5  rDev +7.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

33mL bottle with best-before date printed on back label, poured into tulip.

Pours a deep cherry amber. Head is initially off-white and a finger high, settling to a small foamy layer on top. Bits of lacing cling to the glass here and there.

What a smell! This is my first time trying a flanders red, and I'm incredibly intrigued. Oaky, but not the vanilla bomb of so many BA stouts. Vinous, sweet fruit, and vinegar. This is a beer? Amazing!

This beer really takes your palate on a journey. Oak, slight metallic flavour, then syrupy sweet grapes and cherry, fading to tart vinegar, which gracefully lets the oak and fruit take me to the finish.

Light-bodied, bubbly carbonation, and slight stickiness in the mouth.

Quite the beer. Belgium keeps impressing me.

Photo of Morey
4.1/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

11.2 fluid oz. bottle with best before "12/05/2013" stamped on the back label.

Poured into a snifter. This reddish brown ale produced a white head that stood about one finger tall following a medium pour. Pretty good clarity. Ruby red hues noted as I hold this up to the light. Moderate head retention.

A tart aroma of sour cherries, vinegar, and grape juice. I'm also getting an earthy/woody character. Reminds me of a red wine, but more sour smelling.

Well, you guessed it...It taste sour too! Just enough to make you pucker up a bit. I'm getting some fruit juice flavors towards the middle, followed up by just a touch of oak. Sour flavor lingers all of the way through, yet this actually finishes rather smooth. Very little in the way of hops here.

Medium bodied with moderate carbonation that blends well with the tartness of this beer.

This is my first Flanders Red, but I have to believe that this is a pretty good one. Not just because of the ratings, this one has grown on me with every sip.

Morey's Bottom Line: This is a fun beer to sip on. If you have friends that are into red semi sweet or dry wines, they might really enjoy this. Glad that I got to try it.

Photo of VncentLIFE
4.28/5  rDev +2.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pours brown with an inch head. Decent carbonation.

The duchesse has always smelled sweet, like a good wine.

The taste is much more tart than the smell might lead you to believe. The latent sweetness is still there, but a slightly acidic vinegar taste accents the sweetness very well. Body is light as expected. Exhaling produces a metallic grape feeling.

One damn good bier.

Photo of Radome
4.6/5  rDev +10.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 33 cl bottle into a goblet.

A - Beer is a mahogany brown color with red highlights when held up to the light. It is perfectly clear. The head is thick, off-white and fluffy and it leaves lots of lacing on the glass.

S - The aroma is incredibly complex. No hops, some malt, but dominated by yeast character and the results of the aging process. I perceive this as earthy, musty, sweet, wet-wood and leather that smells exactly like an oloroso sherry. The beer has an additional twang that I can only describe as vinegar. As it warms I get some alcohol vapors as well. Incredible!

T - The flavors follow the aromas, but I also initially get a sense of dried tobacco leaves that reminds me of DFH Palo Santo Maron. I don't taste any barrel or oak character, despite the smell of it. There is some spicy hop flavor in mid-palate and some alcohol flavor before a moderately dry finish. Early in the tasting I detected a metallic note that I didn't like, but it disappeared as the beer breathed and warmed.

M - Body is moderate. The carbonation is sharp and prickly, but it helps keep the beer from feeling cloying. There is a bit of alcohol burn that matches the flavor and aroma.

O - This is an excellent beer. I've had it many times but never really tried to break down the flavors and aromas before. It is unbelievable how much flavor they pack into a 6.2% ABV beer. World-class!

Photo of dorianmarley
4.43/5  rDev +6.5%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours a deep, dark crimson. Thick foamy head with nice lacing. Truly gorgeous when held up to a light.

Nose is bready, earthy, sour, and slightly sweet.

Taste is exceptional. Nice blend of sweet malt and sour contrast. Whole-grain breadiness gives it a full flavor. French vanilla finish smoothens the whole sensation. A beer that a novice or an expert could love--the flavor is so well-balanced; chuggable, even.

Mouthfeel is very creamy, with mild carbonation.

Overall, excellent. One of the best Belgians I have had.

Photo of BBP
4.13/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a cherry chestnut hue with a solid head and lots of lacing.

The aroma is sour and full of tart. There's also hints of light and dark fruitiness.

The tastes starts up with both banana and raspberry. There's some tart to it as well and a bit of sourness. Mildly spicy and a bit peppery. Slight amounts of oak are detectable as well. All in all it tastes very fresh and bright.

The body is medium full. The carbonation is done nicely. It finishes dry and moderately sticky.

Overall, it's a solid drink with exceptional drinkability. Incredibly smooth as well. I'd definitely pick it up at least once. Considering it's from Belgium, the prices isn't too high either.

Photo of MadeInOregon
4.85/5  rDev +16.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Well, here goes another review that will have absolutely no impact whatsoever on the overall score of a beer! Oh well!...

THE APPEARANCE of the Duchesse De Bourgogne was great. The off-white, oily suds of foam atop the body instantly reveal its cask-aged nature. The head diminishes a little, but never dissipates and leaves massive lacing for the duration of drinking, as any barrel-aged brew should. The body is good but not great. It is a medium-deep brown with red hues, similar to Dr. Pepper or root beer. I was disappointed to see that this beer is highly filtered leaving no sediment anywhere. Strikes me as odd for something that is aged and so complex.

THE SMELL of this beer is of vinegary, fermented fruit--oranges and strawberries to be exact. There is also ripe banana and caramel. It's quite unusual but not offensive. It's very pungent and strong, and, honestly, pretty incredible...just a little weird.

THE TASTE literally blew me away. Never have I had a beer like this. Upon reflection it actually tastes very similar to kombucha. There is banana and bubble gum at the tip of the tongue and the same fermented oranges and strawberries (a little mango too) in the smell are at the back of the tongue. This is a very bright, sharp, and crisp beer and tastes something like a fruit soda mixed with bourbon barrel ale. The incredibly sour fruit qualities are very similar to a good lambic beer. Overall, the flavors could also be compared to a tart, hard apple cider. This really is amazing stuff. If this is a blend, as the label says, I would think this flavor would be tough to duplicate from batch to batch(?).

THE FEEL, for all the reasons described above, is amazing. It's very carbonated and has a lot of alcohol burn for a 6.0%'er. Your tongue will tingle like it's going numb with this one. Very entertaining to drink!

CONCLUSION: This is my first Flanders Red Ale but will definitely not be my last. Hopefully others can stand up to this one. Incredible stuff.

Photo of tony223366
4.35/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

From my beer journal. Reviewed on October 16, 2011.

A: Much deeper brown/red than I expected. Nice 2 finger head that is light tan/white. It dissipated to around one finger and stuck around. Good looking beer!

S: Mostly red wine. I'm also getting a nutty backbround that I wasn't expecting.

T: There's a great interplay between the tartness you'd expect from the flanders red and a deep malt backbone that's at times sweet and smooth. Delicious.

M: Medium body, nice carbonation.

O: I think this beer surprised me at every step. Great balance in this little bottle.

Photo of sixerofelixir
4.05/5  rDev -2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

11.2 oz bottle. Very nice art work.

Pours a cloudy brownish-red. A thick, sticky, deep-tan head. Smell is tart, yet with some malt heaviness. Taste is puckering, but more sweet than sour. Lots of cidery apple and tart cherries. Sourdough malts. Feel is very nice, with some body, yet sparkling and effervescent. A tasty, complex brew.

Photo of andrenaline
4/5  rDev -3.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

One of the brews I picked up in Alberta before leaving.

A - Pours a golden ruby red colour, finger of big bubbled head with solid retention and some nice sticky lacing.

S - Dark fruits, raising and plums, touch of oaky notes with some apricots on the finish.

T - Surprisingly sweet and sugary, reminiscent of a cider with a touch of metallic notes that linger. Some bready malts also linger on the palette.

M - Medium bodied, smooth and wet on the finish.

O - A tasty ale, and the first of the style I have tried. Unique would be an understatement. This is definitely worth a try.

Photo of zrab11
4.47/5  rDev +7.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A- Pours a reddish black color with a small 1 finger head. Good lacing throughout

S- Has a yeasty aroma with some sour fruit smells as well.

T- Wow this is tasty It starts out with a nice sweet raspberry flavor and then moves on to a tiny bit of bitterness/sourness and then finish's with a nice pear flavor

M-Medium to full bodied with decent carbonation

D-Overall i was not expecting this brew to taste this good. It had just the right amount of sour and sweet fruit flavors and a nice bitter funk to it. I love this brew and will get it again. I see why this is 5$ a bottle. Alittle steep but for a brew this good ill pay it. Def. pick this up if u can or trade for it!

Photo of Evil_Pidde
4.1/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Pour is red with a small off-white head that slowly sets into decent lacings.

S: Sour and yeasty, there is at least some brett in it. Kind of fruity and dry. Some nice bitterness. Some sweetness to the malt. Cherries.

T: Cherries again, and sweetness. Sour and yeasty just like in the smell. Some tart at the end.

M: Light body and rich carbonation. Aftertaste is rather long and mostly sour, but also bitter.

O: A Flanders Red is always an interesting beer. This is no exception.

Photo of justiceavocado
4.65/5  rDev +11.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Poured from an 11.2 oz bottle into a snifter.

A – Small head, but great retention. Maybe a quarter inch of pancake batter-thick froth, and the bubbles just keep on gushing from the bottom of the snifter, like CocaCola. Lacing is strong, as well. The color of the actual liquid is also like soda, dark and cloudy and reddish. (Update: I just wrote the rest of this review, and the bubbles are still gushing up from the bottom. Jeebus!)

S – Funkier than I expected, almost like with wild yeast. Definitely some blackberries and sour raspberries in there. Intriguing and unique.

T – Yikes! The shortest millisecond of bitterness (following the aroma) is immediately overpowered by sweet fruitiness. Still raspberries, but not sour at all, for most of the swallow. Towards the end, though, the sourness comes back, and lingers long afterwards. Maybe some pear flavor, too, gently.

M – Lovely. This is the mouthfeel I want in a Belgian. Creamy but not chewy, not like a stout, but with a strong presence and tight carbonation.

O – Terrific. I am enthusiastic about this one's uniqueness. I like the surprise of the sweetness after the funky aroma. I like watching the bubbles (which are still going!). I like that this beer has strong opinions about itself, and is not afraid to share them.

Photo of Uhlikm
4.1/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

From a 750ml bottle poured into Rochefort goblet.

Appearance - Pours a ruby-caramel red with a taupe head that dissapates quickly.

Smell - Aroma is sweet, grapelike. Smells of port with faint alcohol notes.

Taste - Raisin, sweet and sour that is well-balanced between flavors. Defitinely a wine/sherry character imparted amongst an almost indiscernable barley backdrop.

Mouthfeel - Light, effervescent, with a "fresh" feel on the palate. Body is lacking and could be bolstered, but seems an appropriate match for the flavor.

Overall - This Flanders Red ale is an interesting intersection of a sour ale and barleywine traits. I liken it to a barleywine "light" that has similar complexitiy of flavors without the heaviness or maltiness of a barleywine. One can definitely appreciate why this is regarded as the "Burgundy of Belgium".

Photo of shortbus7
4.35/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A: A dark red color with a slight head.

S: Dark cherries, apples, and vinegar.

T: There is so much going on in this beer it's amazing. Dark cherries, apples, red wine vinegar, and malt. This beer is more sweet and tangy than sour.

M: Smooth and slightly puckering.

O: This is a great beer and a great place to start with sours. The taste amazed me. So much going on but nothing became muddled.

Photo of Mar02x
3.83/5  rDev -7.9%
look: 4 | smell: 2 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I had this beer in the Mug, a pub in Middleburg. I just pointed at a beer that seemed interesting to me.

A - A red looking beer with a off white head. No visible carbonation.

S - It smells like sour wine and cherries. Somewhat similar to Rodenbach grand cru. I just don't like sour smells.

T - A beautiful cherry beer, sweet and a little sour.

M - Its quite sticky to my palate. The carbonation is medium.

O - A nice beer for a sour one. I would even say its worth buying.

Photo of jayhawk73
4.25/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Exp. Date is 3/2013, still 18 months out.

Pours a brown/red color w/ a nice one finger cocoa head. Amazing carbonation and lacing. Lacing sticks around forever, and would probably be on my glass tomorrow if I didn't wash it. Beautiful red highlights when held up to the light, although you can't see through it at all. Nose is cherry, yeast, sourness, funk, and some vinegar. Very nice balance on the nose- and nothing's overwhelming. Taste is amazingly smooth for what I was expecting. There is some sourness, cherry, funk, but there's also a malt smoothness to it that offsets the others a little bit. Really nice feel as well. Overall, this is a great beer. It's a good intro beer for sours, and this style as well. I would definitely have this again. Cheers.

Photo of jdense
4.05/5  rDev -2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

330 cl bottle from somewhere in Beervana, enjoyed in The Big, 9.27.11,poured into De'Proef teardrop.

Light amber with significant garnet highlights, goodly number of carbonation streams rising from center bottom of glass. Off white head, a good fingers worth, relatively slow dissipation with significant lacing. Nose is pretty sweet for the style, cherry and grape, little hops if any in the aroma, the yeast is fairly noticeable and dries out the fruitiness. Taste once again is pretty sweet, minimal tartness, not a lot of sourness, balanced well by sweetness, no hops. Mouthfeel is medium, ok effervescence, some residual stickiness. Really tasty, perhaps a better entry Flanders than some of the more tart or sour entries. In any case, very tasty.

Photo of StonedTrippin
4.1/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

not your typical sour, overly infused with sour cherry and rotten harvest fermentation. surprisingly mellow with its dark pour. piquant and satisfying. pairs well with smoked cheeses amd pickled beets. quick in the mouth and somehow ancient. 4-pack night is worthy. cheers!

Photo of FunkyFibes
4.43/5  rDev +6.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A- It pours a ruby red/amber color with a tight, creamy one finger head that dissipates to a thin film on top very quickly. It leaves light lacing behind.

S- A nice sour cherry and apple aroma with an equal part oak showing up.

T- Splashes in with a nice sour wash right off that brings the cherry and apple flavors to the forefront. The malt is very present imparting a wide array of notes mixed in with some more subtle oak woody tones. I'm surprised with how much is going on that everything is so discernible, and my palate isn't overwhelmed. An overwhelming sign of the great craftsmanship involved in this brew.

M- Medium bodied almost delving into chewy. The light carbonation and dryness from the oak help to keep the sweetness from overpowering the palate.

O- I have been on a sour kick as of recent, and the complexity of this one really blew me away. There is so much going on, but is so well constructed that you get to enjoy every piece individually and as a whole with each sip. Man did this go great with dinner!

Photo of monitorpop
4.1/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Dark brown with a ruby red glow. Half finger creamy head that sticks to the glass after drinking

S: Strong aroma of fermented sour cherries

T: Cherry and a slight vinegar. Starts a bit sweet with with a tart finish.

M: Crisp with a fizzy carbonation.

O: Really enjoyable sour. Not as sour as many, but this is a good place to start for those interested in sour beers.

Photo of SteveS1
3.98/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

Look: Pours dark ruby/caramel with a decent head that fizzles out at an even pace.

Smell: Tart fruit and lots of it, dried cranberries, raisins, plums, currents, rasberry and a distinct woody scent.

Taste: Tart fruit (raspberry and cranberry) on the tongue melts into much mellower berries (strawberry, sweet blueberry), and finishes with a clean and dry red grape. Current/woody aftertaste. Sweet overall and nary a trace of alcohol.

Feel: Fantastic carbonation subsides into a refreshing light body.

Drink: Exquisite beer or fancy soda? Indeed, this is a beer, and quite an impressive one, but there isn't nearly enough tart to balance the sweetness for me. Very drinkable, almost dangerously so.

Duchesse De Bourgogne from Brouwerij Verhaeghe
93 out of 100 based on 3,414 ratings.