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Duchesse De Bourgogne - Brouwerij Verhaeghe

Not Rated.
Duchesse De BourgogneDuchesse De Bourgogne

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BA SCORE
93
outstanding

3,569 Ratings
THE BROS
93
outstanding

(view ratings)
Ratings: 3,569
Reviews: 1,415
rAvg: 4.16
pDev: 13.46%
Wants: 175
Gots: 501 | FT: 10
Brewed by:
Brouwerij Verhaeghe visit their website
Belgium

Style | ABV
Flanders Red Ale |  6.00% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 10-15-2001

Belgian top-fermented reddish-brown ale, a blend of 8 and 18 months old beers following the careful maturation in oak casks.
View: Beers (13) | Events
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 3,569 | Reviews: 1,415 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of harrymel
3.6/5  rDev -13.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Best by: 11/30/2011
Poured to NB globe.

A: Cherry finished mahogany with superb clarity. The peanut, two finger head dissipates quickly to sheet which creeps up the sides. Good lacing.

S: Acetic, sweet, apple skin, hints of soy sauce. Orange glaze sauce. Nicer than the first time.

T: Sweet and sour. Very clean white vinegar with a blend of apple cider vinegar in there. Good flavor to pair with a meal.

M: Medium mouthfeel, low carbonation. Slightly drying.

D: One of the more sessionable sours available. Not a beer I would recommend without a meal to go with it. This is not a good beer to be had alone IMO. I would recommend with chinese or japanese. Maybe even some indian dishes. Would also pair with saucy BBQ.

Photo of OnThenIn
3.68/5  rDev -11.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A: Two fingers of thick brown head on top of a extremely dark ruby color. Stunning.

S: The smell is sour with some serious cherry aromas. A hint of sweetness. A bit of oak smell and a bit of funk as well.

T: The taste is funky with sudden sweetness and a cherry flavor that is slowly taken over by a mix of citiric and acetic sourness, which linger for a while. The sweetness is a bit too much, but I dig the complexity and overall flavor.

M: Medium with pretty good carbonation.

D: The sweetness kinda kills the drinkability. I wish the sour was a lot more powerful to balance out the sweetness.

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

reviewed from notes:

appearance: copper orange red brown thin lacing head

smell: dark fruits, sour, spice

taste: cherries, tart, sweet finish

mouthfeel: mild carbonation, medium body

drinkability: decent brew but not the best in the style. glad I got to try it but will go back to the better brews in the style.

Cheers,

The CPJ

Photo of Cozzatoad
3.98/5  rDev -4.3%
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

Photo of plfahey
4.53/5  rDev +8.9%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

750mL bottle (corked and caged) poured into a tulip glass.

Appearance-Deep red color with ruby/garnet highlights-brilliant clarity. Ivory/light tan moderate head with moderate retention.

Aroma-Awesome aroma of cherries, grapes, and passionfruit. Nice oaky, woody notes. Tart, with musty brett flavors of horse blanket and barnyard. Complex, layered, wonderful.

Flavor-Tart up front, fruity sweet in the middle, and dry and acidic in the finish. Cherries, passionfruit, and grapes. Oaky, tart, cider vinegar flavors as well. Slight chocolate flavor. Light barnyard musty flavors in the finish. Finish is dry with a touch of acidity and lingering cherry notes. Awesome.

Mouthfeel-Medium body with moderate carbonation. Smooth and easy drinking, with a slight tingle on the palate. Crisp and refreshing.

I must say, I think I like Rodenbach Grand Cru a bit better, but the Duchesse is simply sublime. Just a hair on the sweet side, but that's just being nitpicky. This is a phenomenal beer.

Photo of 77ships
4.75/5  rDev +14.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Had this one at home, from notes:

A: bright, shinny red, small white head, minor lacing
S: funk, hint of vinegar & cherries, hint of oak
T: very fruit, heavy on cherries, green apples, lemons, wood chips, mild tart, hint of funk, some wine qualities, incredible, especially how fruity this is (I could have sworn they put cherries in here) and how the sourness balances this
M: light, refreshing & dry
D: the drinkability is insane, it is almost impossible not to chug it down at once

This is an absolutely amazing beer, if you are even remotely interested in sours, you must get this one.

Photo of lnashsig
4.3/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 5

Poured into my Duvel tulip glass, pours a dark amber color, huge cloudy white foam immediately fills the glass. It receeds quickly, leaving a little sticky lacing on the glass. Smell- big white wine flavors, reminiscent of a sauvignon blanc, with some tart sour and sweet aromas. Admittedly I have not had much exposure to sours, but I have recently had RR consecration, supplication, temptation, and monk's cafe Flemish red. This is different from all of them in smell- i'm actually surprised at the taste of this beer after getting the smell. Taste- mellow tart cherries, some strawberry flavors, with a musty tart finish. This is far less sour than any of the sours I have had before.

Mouthfeel- this is unusually creamy, somewhat lacking heavy carbonation. Its nice though, and well done.

Drinkability- super easy. The lack of the heavy tart flavor makes this unusually easy.

Photo of Anthony1
4.04/5  rDev -2.9%
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.

Photo of July2Nov
4.5/5  rDev +8.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Older version: 19-01-08.

Appearance: Poured a very dark burgundy color (much darker than I anticipated). Thin, nice lacing all around the glass (held well during the life of the beer).

Smell: Funky and strong. Getting some apple and dark fruit scents. Spiced Raisin comes through near the end.

Taste & Mouthfeel: I guess when I automatically see a darker beer, my immediate thought is that it's going to be heavy...so with that in mind, this was so light and refreshing to the palate. Has a thin syrup like texture that wraps on the tongue. Nice undercurrent of fruit flavors, with some sweetness. The initial flavor has something akin to balsamic vinegar. Some tartness during the middle...the aftertaste has a slight numbing effect. Very interesting and complex, yet lighter and refreshing.

Drinkability: This is almost wine-like and lambic-esque in it's tasting...which I'm a fan of. With this in mind, this is so drinkable that it's almost off the scale. I've had this bottle for close to three years and I'm impressed by the flavor that is still evident from this bottle. Must compare it to a newer version to find what the differences are (if any). Would try again, in any form! A must!!!

Photo of BeerForMuscle
4.18/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

A - Medium brown toned body with a foamy beige one finger head.

S - Tangy and tart, also fruity and fresh. Some grainy scents are there too.

T - Alot of fruit tartness like cherries and possible red grape/apple. This beer is also acidic and has wine like qualities. The alcohol is smooth and crisp. The back of the tongue gets some wood aftertaste and the beer has some sour dryness to it as well.

M - Very effervescent and clean mouthfeel. The beer has a lighter-medium body and is very smooth and refreshing.

Notes - I enjoy sours and this is one of my favorites of the type. Its always good, easy to drink and just an overall quality choice.

Photo of pjcors
4.33/5  rDev +4.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Drank from a 750ml bottle. Shared with a friend. Still, perhaps a bit much for a beer of this style.

A- Dark amber in color, with a thin, lacy head.

S- When I first poured this beer I found the smell to be rather off-putting. It had a strange, chlorinated smell to it. It almost reminded me of the local YMCA pool. But the deeper I got the more other flavors began to express themselves. I got hints of apple, cherries, and maybe some pear? I couldn't really tell, but the overall fruitiness was readily apparent when you got past the pungent first smell.

T- This is where the beer blew me away. All of the strange aromas of the smell disappear after the first taste. This is nothing but goodness. The apples and cherries are immediately apparent. A sour taste begins to develop the longer you hold it in your mouth, but this is by no means a bad thing. It is actually a pleasant counter to the sweetness of the fruits. I had read previous reviews where people have said they've tasted a vinegar-like quality, but none of this was apparent to me. I got hints of lambic, but more earthy.

M- A very thick, sticky mouthfeel. Like I said before, a pleasant sourness starts to develop the longer you taste it. A slight carbonation is also present.

D- Very good. As I stated at the beginning, it can be a bit overwhelming when had from a 750ml bottle, but I can see buying an 11.2oz of this and thoroughly enjoying it. A great dessert beer to enjoy.

All in all, I was mighty impressed by this beer. The smell turned me off a bit at first, but it was a small problem with an otherwise delicious beer.

Photo of dizknee24
3.85/5  rDev -7.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A Reddish not much head on this one

S Smelled of a nice red wine. I was not sure on if this is good or bad. I decided bad IMO.

T u can definetly tell there is some oak barrels involved. but it tasted way to much like wine for me.

M - again with the wine

D couldnt get past the winish notes! not for me. not saying its bad just not my cup of tea.

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

Interesting and happy I tried this. Cool bartender gave me a half glass on the house as the keg kicked.

Red, clear, very pretty in the glass. Decent head with good retention on the lacing.

The first thing that I picked up was some funk, then maybe cherries and sugar. But primarily musty funk and ... salt?

Tastes quite different than it smells. Sweet up front, cherries and a little tartness to finish. Some weed on the exhalation out of the nose. Grew on me throughout the glass. Not a crisp beer by any stretch.

Light body, not overly carbonated. Quite drinkable but a sipper nonetheless.

Photo of FosterJM
3.68/5  rDev -11.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

287th review on BA
bottle to flute
330ML capped (best by: 18/2/12)

App- A slightly hazy mix of light brown and some crimson. No real head developed on this one. A slight ring of bubbles around the edges.

Smell- Cheers, to the forums of BA for telling me exactly how this would smell. Soy sauce and vinegar. Was not the best smelling thing IMO.

Taste- I do have to say it tasted better than it smelled. It was a pleasant mix of sweet flavors (cherry) Tart and some other slight fruits.

Mouth- Was a bit thin to me but I was expecting that from the style. Very high carbed, like a nice spritzer Had a nice tart aftertaste

Drink- Not as bad as what I thought but for the top-20 rating in its style, I thought it was a nice suprice. Was nice to sip on while relaxing. Had a nice profile of sweet/tart flavors to it.

Photo of GilGarp
4.3/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Served on-tap at the Cheeky Monk. As with all beers at CM, it's served in branded glassware which, in this case, is basically a simple red wine glass.

Aroma is musky and funky with some slight fruit character.

Flavor is surprisingly enjoyable and much better than the aroma would suggest. Lots of ripe red fruit, grapes and cherries, with some mild sour/tart flavors. The sweetness is perfectly balanced with the other tart fruit.

Mouthfeel is medium-light bodied and nicely carbonated.

Overall a really nice, warm weather, easy drinking sour ale. This is the perfect introduction to sours.

Photo of AronVietti
4.88/5  rDev +17.3%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

From a bottle that has a best by date of 29/10/2012 poured into a wine glass. Gave a nice hiss when the bottle was opened at 48 degrees.

Appearance: White puffy billowing head with a mixture of small and large bottles. Head dies down to half the hight quickly with strong lacing on the glass but the rest remains intact. Deep brownish red hue and absolute clear, like an aged Pinot Noir.

Smell: Fruity with a strong smell of Sour Cherries or unripe plums, new leather and a subtle amount of malt. The aroma is strong but not over powering.

Taste: Starts with a fruity sweetness that is soon balanced by a slight acidity and nice Plum flavor with a hint of spice. The acidity lingers with a bit of bitterness that further helps the balance with the original sweetness and carries the spice notes.

Mouthfeel: The carbonation is balanced for the style, and the body of the beer is very full though not heavy. The finish is long, and the taste overall is as reminiscent of wine as the color was, which is perfectly within the style.

Drinkability: This beer is extremely drinkable, at only 6% there are no hints of alcohol for me, and though the mouthfeel is full the beer doesn't seem heavy. I would have one of these with a rich meal, relying on the acidity to cut through cream or cheese heavy dishes and the fruitiness to add to the experience. And afterwards I would have one with a cheese plate for the sheer enjoyment of it.

I would like to try a bottle of this just before the 'Best Before' date to see if there is a difference

Photo of laituegonflable
3.52/5  rDev -15.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Pours a dark burgundy-tinged amber colour with cream head of small bubbles that is here one moment and the next is settled out into swirling clouds of lace; it doesn't quite cling to the glass. Manifold trails of bead add life to the party. Pretty good.

Smell is musty and sour with a big balsamic vinegar aroma coming off that. Tinged with sweetness though, a touch of cherry and a good spicy belt of black pepper. Good vinous richness with oak and a whisper of honey as well, just part of a lovely sticky and sweet base that really must be smelled to do it any justice. Just wonderful.

Taste is an extremely sour Belgian affair, and sadly on first impression I can't count myself among its more ardent admirers. Starts with a tartness that is noticeably 'off' yet never puckering. Some might call it restrained, but I call it confused. The sweetness feels overdone, by contrast, and it lends the palate an overall spoiled quality that isn't so present in a Rodenbach or a Cantillon - because those beers just push with extreme force on the limits of sour. There is abundant fruit here, with cherry, gooseberries and apricots, but the sourness just renders them all a little off and gives a slight oxidised wine flavour overall. Mid-to-late is especially off-putting with a compost flavour. Look, on the right palate this might be an exception beer but, to me, everything tastes undercooked and the whole sweet/sour clash is a big turnoff. Points for complexity; not for balance.

A fair tingle on the mouthfeel from carbonation. Not overdone though to the point of harshness, just adds texture to go with the sour palate. Intriguing.

Not a favourite, but there is character enough to keep one exploring, albeit with more than a little trepidation.

Photo of SauceBoss
4.2/5  rDev +1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance: The appearance poured darker than I expected being more dark brown/black in color at first then dimming to a firm brownish-red as I tilted the glass. Either way it was pretty. The head was creamy and laced nicely in a tulip glass.

Smell: Very fruity smell with a soft oaky background. Minute sourness and it was soft and pleasant.

Taste: Sour but not overbearing. It was more tart (sour) upfront followed by a nice sweetness both in a balanced combination. The fruity smell definitely came out when drinking.

Mouthfeel: Carbonation was nice and subtle. Had almost the consistency of a lambic and was pretty tart making my mouth pucker.

Drinkability: Very drinkable. This was a unique style of beer having been my first Flanders Red but with that said, I would drink another right now if I had one :)

Photo of yourchoice
3.73/5  rDev -10.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Review is working off notes from a few nights ago...

A- Beer poured a muddy brown. Very little head and moderate lacing.

S- A very tart fruit on the nose. Sour.

T- A sour, tart fruit taste, with a subtle champagne presence. The champagne subtetly highlights this beer for me.

M - The tartness pleasingly puckers, but it seems a bit thin.

O - The bomber size is as about as much as I would want. I enjoyed the sour experience, but I hope to find something more to my liking next time I venture for something deemed sour.

Photo of smakawhat
4.07/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured from the bottle into a tulip glass. Best before September 9th 2012, and ready to roll.

A nice somewhat foamy head that is sort of cream and off red/white in appearance. Sits on a dark brown/red body resembling almost pancake syrup like in color.

Bouquet is very unique. A faint brown sugar, smoked wood chips, sour fruit and yeast all combine to make a real interesting nose. Hints of brett"y" saison quality. Real nice.

Taste is a very tolerable sourness, and what feels like maltyness and brown sugar on the finish. Both sour and sweet at the same time. A little bit of tight prickly carbonation though, and a bit of a wet mouthfeel.

Even still drinkability is pretty solid. I would have this more often if it wasn't so pricey.

Photo of CuttDeez
4.3/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A - Deep brown, and ruby reds. Covered by a cream color head that is sticky.

S - Aromas of oak, some deep fruits. Soft nose

T - Lots of cherry throughout this taste. Somewhat tart in the begining but very smooth. There was caramel and chocolate in there as well. a tartness and dryness fineshes off the palate. Strong malt flavors as well.

M - Interesting mouthfeel that is dynamic, Tart, sweet, dry. It is a little bit of a wonderful trip through the flavors and it was enjoyable throughout.

D - Incredibly drinkable. I split this with a friend and wanted more.

I felt like every taste brought a new flavor to the table. It was incredibly dynamic and smooth. I really enjoyed this beer and I am glad I picked up a second bottle to age in my celar for future enjoyment.

Photo of samie85
3.5/5  rDev -15.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A-Pours a dark, purplish red color with one finger of creamy, off white head.

S-Apple cider and balsamic vinegar with green apples, caramel, and some oak.

T-Sweet and slightly sour with a bit of barnyard character.

M-Pretty smooth and rich in the mouth with light carbonation,

D-Wow, I was expecting quite a bit more sourness but this reminds me a lot of Lindeman's Faro with a bit of sour.

Photo of TenHornsProud
4.3/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

Having recently purchased an oak barrel for homebrewing purposes, I needed to "research" some barrel aged "sours," as that's what I'm looking towards.

Sweet Duchesse here begins a quest that will surely destroy my bank account, home life, and possibly work life as well. So it goes.

She is nice and red, i mean a darker kind of sexy red, not ginger. Smells of vinegar and oak with some kind of fruity sweetness...a good sign.

Fantastic mouth feel, high carbonation. Taste's of sweet, sour cherry and beer, minor funk cuts through to make it interesting. Drink it too quick and all you get in vinegar, so don't. I'll be drinking this again.

Photo of hardy008
4.28/5  rDev +2.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pours a ruby brown color, with a 3 finger off white head with nice retention and lacing. Nice aroma. It has tart cherries, green apples, cider vinegar, oak, and barnyard funk.

The taste is sweeter than I expected. Sweet and tart cherries, sweet green apple, oak, vanilla, and sugar. The barnyard funk and the cider vinegar I detected in the aroma, do not appear in the taste. This is wonderfully complex.

Medium bodied with medium carbonation. The aftertaste is slightly sweet and slightly sour. This is a very nice Flanders Red Ale. I recommend this beer highly.

Photo of vandemonian
3.56/5  rDev -14.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Duchesse De Bourgogne has a reddish brown colour and a decent 5 mm head that fades to lacing quite quickly. The smell is sour and vinegary with a hint of sweetness. Some sour apple and.. some flavour... I can't put my finger on it... maybe umami. The aftertaste is smooth and good with smallest hint of bitterness. The texture is foamy pretty thick. Overall, a very nice sour ale.

Duchesse De Bourgogne from Brouwerij Verhaeghe
93 out of 100 based on 3,569 ratings.