Duchesse De Bourgogne - Brouwerij Verhaeghe

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Duchesse De BourgogneDuchesse De Bourgogne

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BA SCORE
93
outstanding

3,429 Ratings
THE BROS
94
outstanding

(view ratings)
Ratings: 3,429
Reviews: 1,374
rAvg: 4.16
pDev: 13.7%
Wants: 159
Gots: 421 | FT: 7
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: 3,429 | Reviews: 1,374 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of Hojaminbag
4.28/5  rDev +2.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Reddish brown body with a tan head and many strands of carbonation bubbles. About a finger of tan head that doesn't boast a lot of retention, but does leave a little bit of lacing.

Smells like grapes. Sour bordering on vinegar aromas.

Taste is great. Very balanced, very mild. Some like, tart fruitiness up front that reminds me of sweet cherries and grapes. Some sourness follows up but doesn't overpower. Hints of oak are noticeable throughout, especially in the finish.

Mouthfeel is very light and thin. Not too mouth-puckering, but just a little sour.

I could drink this beer all night. I'd even consider shelling out a lot of cash for a case of this stuff.

Photo of ejquin
4.38/5  rDev +5.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A: red with thin white head that holds with good lacing.

S: Oaky and deep with caramel notes and a fruitiness. Smoky Vanilla from the oak and butterscotch as well.

T/M: Nice creamy mouthfeel with carb level. Taste is malty and caramely up front giving weight to raspberry fruitiness and acidic funk, with the vanilla smoky oakyness coming through on finish alongwith a maple sugar sweetness.

Ovr: Very nice red ale.

Photo of Jerico
4.6/5  rDev +10.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A - dark, murky amber/red color with only a slight head.

S - slightly fruity - like a bit of cherry/raspberry/strawberry - and slightly sour with a hint of lovely funk.

T/M/D - wow, is this something special! The cherry/raspberry/strawberry flavor is there, but it not in a overly sweet or syrupy way at all - more sour, but not aggressively so. The beer also has a texture - it feels and tastes thick and creamy but not heavy. Amazing! I've had this on tap once before buying a bottle, and the bottled version tastes exactly the same! Outstanding stuff.

Photo of ryandurka
5/5  rDev +20.2%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

i bought a case of Duchesse De Bourgogne bottles in emmaus pa, at shangys. i love Flemish red ale and this is the perfect example of Flemish red. its refreshing and tastes great. its not the strongest of beers but the taste makes up for that. there is nothing to complain about with this beer. its distributed well in America and is not too hard to find. if anyone sees this beer and is curious as to what a good red ale tastes like, try it!

Photo of kuykendall
4.68/5  rDev +12.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

This is my first Flemish red, and my god I think I'm in love.
A= Deep Red color, closer to a burgundy.
S= an incredible amount of Fruitiness, but not over power like you get in lambics.
T= I can honestly say that parts of the flavor are completely indescribable to me. I taste the sour notes, but then the fruit comes in and malts follow it and then finally the funk I have heard so much about. It's final I'm a convert.
Mouth feel= Very bubbly but light on the tongue.

Drink ability= When I first really go into beer, it took me awhile to get used to the concept of wanting a bitter beer. It was contrary to my nature, but the sour and funk of this beer has pulled me in almost immediately. A highly drinkable beer, and I'm glad I picked it as my first Flemish.

Photo of paco1029384756
3.98/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pours deer ruby brown color, small off white head lasts a while.

Scent of sweet, sour cherries and some yeast.

Taste of sweet cherries, tart initially with some bready yeast coming in as it warms a bit. Cherry flavor does not let down and yeast balances it nicely.

Moutfheel is very clean, but quite tart and biting.

Photo of AKBelgianBeast
4.13/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Pours a nice brownish red with decent white head. Good flemish sour fruit nose, with some oaky scent. Slight oak flavor, strong flemish taste with mild sourness and good dark sour fruit taste. Mouthfeel is nice and crisp with ample carbonation. Drinkability is pretty good, but there is a sort of chalky acidity that I am not a big fan of. I notice it in all flemish reds, but particularly strong in this one. A very good example of the style, and one I will revisiit when craving some flem.

Photo of sholland119
4.38/5  rDev +5.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Along with the Monk's Sour Ale, this beer was my introduction to Flanders Reds. I was intrigued to go back and try one again.

Pours a moderately opaque brown with just a hint of dark purple. A thin tan head sticks around nicely.

Sour fruits, mostly cherries and maybe some green apple combined with a nice bready yeast.

Taste is delicious, with a bit of fruity sweetness in the front which rolls into a nice sour tang. Cherry sweetness come back in the finish. Excellent, if perhaps a tiny bit too sweet.

Mouthfeel has a modest pucker with nice medium carbonation.

An easy drinker for the style. The extra sweetness makes this more sessionable than most Flanders Reds.

HV

Photo of corey0212
4.1/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a gorgeous clear ruby color, big dense sand-colored head fades very slowly, leaves a nice foamy layer on top of the beer, and lots of lacing on the glass. Smell is sour cherries and green apples. Very tart taste, sour like the skin on a green apple, slight vinegar taste. Tight carbonation, but still pretty creamy, especially as it warms. This is my first of the style, and I'm certainly intrigued. Definitely not an everyday drinker, but very tasty, and something I'd have again in a heartbeat.

Photo of ckeegan04
3.83/5  rDev -7.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A - Dark ruby red in color, almost a mahogany brown. One finger foamy off white head. Average retention and good lacing.

S - A strong vinegar aroma with hints of sweet dark fruits. Also a faint aroma of the wood barrels it was aged in.

T - The vinegar taste is not near as strong, but it is still present. Very sweet taste of dark fruits with a bitter finish. Very unique taste.

M/D - Medium bodied and somewhat over carbonated. A very unique style but rather drinkable.

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

Pours a very nice dark copper/garnet color, a little shiny, that turned to more of a brown/garnet color later as the beer diminished in the glass, with great head and lacing. very nice sour and slightly fruity aroma. it has a great tart/sour flavor, a little fruity, that (with each drink) started sweet, turned slightly bitter, and became a nice mix at the end. Very smooth, just a bit of roughness at the end. Excellent beer.

Photo of DmanGTR
4.72/5  rDev +13.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A - poured a transparent burgundy red with 1" off-white creamy head that clung to the tulip glass and laced well. Excellent head retention.

S - sour fruits like green apples and cherries, some fresh berries, with a white zinfandel-like tartness and very slight alcohol. Fruity and deep, some ripe grape notes and caramel malts.

T - very different from what I've ever had! Tart cherries and apples, puckering sweetness, an acidic finish with slight bitterness as that found in wine in the finish as well. Lingering fruity and acidic aftertaste.

M/D - medium bodied and well carbonated. Although it is not thick or syrupy, it can definitely be enjoyed as a sipper before or after dinner.

Overall - I bought this one on sale at Beers of the World for $10/4 pack (regularly $22 I think), still before the freshness date. I was slightly apprehensive to try it, seeing as I've never had a Flanders/Flemish Red Ale before but I was quite surprised by its tastiness and drinkability. It is a most interesting beer. It's like a blend of a Belgian dark ale and a cherry lambic with high levels of tartness. Well balanced and will entice the adventurous palate. Beauty in a very different beer. I could drink this all day.

Photo of gonzo46and2
4.25/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Pours a bright yet dark ruby. Big white head.

Aroma is full of berries and honey. Better than other sours I've had. Not too acidic.

Taste is sour but not puckeringly so. Berries and sweetness with sour. Very candy-like. Think tangy berry-apple cider.

Mouthfeel is nice. Big and fluffy carbonation.

This was still one of my first belgian sour ales and so far the only one I liked. It reminded me of lambic. Very drinkable.

Photo of atis
4.15/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Appearance is dark brown (maybe it is too dark in the room to see any redness), average head with good lacing.

Quite acidic smell, vinegar like. Flavour at first is very fruity with limited sourness - but not as much as I expected from the aroma. Leaves satisfying and slightly sweet aftertaste. Creamy and pleasant mouthfeel with more than average carbonation. Very complex and interesting beer.

I picked this beer at random and now I am extremely satisfied about my choice. Certainly will drink this beer again.

Photo of joshwlt
4.25/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Tan brown color with a purple grape juice-like tone when held to the light. Off white sticky head. Smells vinegary, sour, and acidic. It really shines in flavor though. Has an apple cider-like sweetness but not overly sugary as it has a bready malt to match and a sourness that puckers the sides of the tongue. This stuff just tastes delicious.

Photo of Onslow
4.83/5  rDev +16.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

wow, a very different brew indeed ... lots of complex and strangely exotic (erotic?) flavours ... crazy good full mouthfeel ... it is uplifting and tangy, with some jump up and dance qualities .. a fitting beer for the 2008 champions league! ... full, delicious, and a damn enjoyable beer... Come On United!!!

Photo of Hornet2003
3.63/5  rDev -12.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: red.

Smell: Vinegar and cherry. Lots of sourness.

Taste: Very sweet. Bourgogne has an off-cherry flavour. Sour essence, but sweet on the tongue.

Mouthfeel: The sweetness makes this a gem on the tongue. Very pleasant. Not over carbonated and a nice bitterness in there as well.

Drinkability: A little too sour for me to enjoy more than one of at a time.

Overall: My first Flander's Red is quite the experience. Very sweet in the mouth and sour on the nose.

Photo of biegaman
4.38/5  rDev +5.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

The beer is 'red' only in regards to its highlights, which blaze a casual orange-red, like that of persimmon fruit. The body is slightly dark and its shine is modest. A patchy yet all encompassing tarp of head slates the beer at all times. Irregular patterns of lacing are splotched about the glass.

The smell can evolve throughout the tasting. Generally speaking it is a compost of candy apple, balsamic vinegar and spiked cranberry lemonade. As it became room temperature, the smell grew more sweet than it was at first sour, and became remarkably alike a mead. One (or all) of the cranberry lemonade/balsamic vinegar/candy apple is what most will likely pick up on.

The Duchesse, somewhat distinct from others its style, has an underlying bittersweet cocoa mixed with granola kind of flavour. More like others, the sense of balsamic vinegar is strong. Strawberries, cherries, bruised apple, and dates characterize most of the overripe fruit taste.

The mouthfeel is certainly a lot closer to a wine than most beer drinkers would be used to. Bitterness is replaced by sourness (although no Cantillon) and tartness (although no Rodenbach). The oak aging contributes greatly to the overall dimension of the beer, lending a dryness, but also combining with the sweetness in flavour to make for rum, port, or sherry like taste.

Like lambics, Flanders Ales are a blend of young and old beers and carry a touch of funk. Although the two styles also share in common barrel aging, the merging of tart, sweet, and sour, as well as the often underlying acidity, the reds and bruins of Flanders certainly don't drink like their Brusselian cousins.

Flanders Ales offer you a choice. Their subtleties and complexity allow for something that can be sipped and savoured. The medley of sweet and sour, on the other hand, make for something refreshing and rewarding, a glass that won't last long full. The choice can be yours.

I've had the Duchesse De Bourgogne on so many occasions now, including the beer at different ages, and I can honestly say that it is always a treat. The Duchesse especially epitomizes the art of Flemish brewing.

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

A - Reddish hints in a dark brown, minimal head, but it was a tannish/taupish color

S - For being a Flanders Red, this was good. Smelled of grapes, almost like Chardonnay wine with hints of vinegar, fruit (couldn't place it), and clove

T - Not sour at all, almost sickly sweet. Like the beer was not fully fermented or a bag of sugar got poured in the fermenter right before it was kegged. Tasted more like a swet wine/beer hybrid. Was still good and drinkable, but not exactly what I had in mind when ordering a Flanders Red.

M - Full bodied, yet not very heavy. Like I keep pointing out, like a sweet red wine with a malty backbone.

D - I would order this again, but in a bottle to see how its different. I think this would be a good beer to age and see how the flavors meld.

Photo of DrunkenMaster
3.43/5  rDev -17.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Cranberries, cherries and balsamic in the smell. Light brown and slowly diminishing head with a dark amber body. Taste is moderatley acidic but the balsamic is still pretty strong. The cherries and balsamic is just too much for me. Decent, but my thing.

Photo of 0110x011
2.88/5  rDev -30.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2

Recieved this in the TIF from Kempleton. Thanks!

Pours a murky dark amber color, with a frothy two-finger head and not much lacing. Nose is dark fruit and vinegar, with that lactic sour sting. The sourness hits first, but then quickly fades, giving way to sugar. Like pure sugar. This is waaay too sweet for the flemish sour style. The sweetness & sugar overpower any hint that his might be a Flanders Red. Tastes to me like what Dogfish Head would do with this style. Medium mouthfeel, but the sweetness takes away that crisp, palate-cleansing refreshment I so look forward to with Flanders Reds. If you're new to the style, it might be an interesting drink. if you've had any other Flanders Reds, avoid it.

Photo of Hophead101
3.15/5  rDev -24.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

had on draft at Zeno's in state college.
nice dark copper color. small frosty bubbles, not too much head, good looking. great sour smell - not too surprising knowing it is a flemish sour - a bit heavy on the vinegar smell - a little musty and moldy smell as well - but not all in a bad way. taste is not quite as good as it looks or smells. a bit disappointing. had a bit of an off flavor. it is within style, but just not the best flemish sour that i have had. one glass is enough of this one.

Photo of BretSikkink
4/5  rDev -3.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Brown color, served with not much head, just a few soapy bubbles. Lacing is present however.

Vinegar-sour aroma, woody character as well. The palate takes the sour as well up front, quite sweet, cherry flavor, and again the oaky, nut-action comes back.

Medium-full body, a little aftertaste, but very pleasant as well.

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

Red-plum body supports a thick, off-white head with solid durability, nicely effervescent. Sour apple/grape aromas blend with lemon and cider vinegar, mixing sweet/tart with downright sour. I also get the faint hint of Worcester Sauce. The taste is sweeter than the nose, though primarily sour. Sour apple and grape find a nice foil in cherry, very delicious. Slightly viscous, tartly syrupy. Very nicely done. If it were somewhat less tart, I'd be inclined to judge the drinkability higher. As it is, though, this is a very distinct and intriguing beer, one I'd certainly buy again. Very good.

Photo of USCTrojanBrian
4.55/5  rDev +9.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

330ml bottle consumed at The Trappist in Oakland, CA. From notes.

Egg-like foamy head. Violet-brown color. Sour cherry and oaky aroma.

Overly smooth first taste. Low carbonation, good, like a cask beer. Solid base beer. Somewhat sugary but quite enjoyable.

Maybe needed a bit more sour to balance the flavors a bit but this thing is like candy within the style, hard not to enjoy.

Duchesse De Bourgogne from Brouwerij Verhaeghe
93 out of 100 based on 3,429 ratings.