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Duchesse De Bourgogne - Brouwerij Verhaeghe

Not Rated.
Duchesse De BourgogneDuchesse De Bourgogne

Educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
93
outstanding

3,612 Ratings
THE BROS
93
outstanding

(view ratings)
Ratings: 3,612
Reviews: 1,427
rAvg: 4.16
pDev: 13.7%
Wants: 176
Gots: 530 | FT: 11
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: 3,612 | Reviews: 1,427
Photo of whoneeds8
3.87/5  rDev -7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Best before date of 08-14-09. Poured into a westmalle glass very dark brown with a one finger off white head.

This is my first attempt at a Flemish Red. And whoa, is it different. First off the smell is something totally unexpected. Rich in carmalized raisins. Followed by a wooded smell. I would almost compare it to wood rot.

The taste is very interesting. There is a sweetness to it that counters to a very strong and overpowering sourness. The raisin flavor is there along with an almost lichorice flavor.

I've got to say, for my first experience with a Flemish, I don't like it one bit. I'm sure this is a very good example of the style, which is why I'm going to rate it high because it's got all the characteristics. It just seems this style isn't my cup of tea.

Photo of TEdubbaD
3.87/5  rDev -7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of Jonada
3.87/5  rDev -7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 3.75

750ml cork and cage bottle served in a DFH signature glass. Cork shows an expiration date of 7/2015.

Appearance: Pours a dark red brown color with 1+ finger of a tan head that yields good retention and lacing. When held to light, body is clear with a dark amber color. Lots of visible carbonation.

Smell: Balsamic vinegar, sour cherries, damp oak, some light caramel and red grape.

Taste: Starts with a surprising amount of sweetness on the tongue before some mild sourness starts to creep in and balance it out some. Flavors are sweet and sour cherry, vinegar, red apple, hints of brown bread and Belgian candi sugar.

Mouthfeel: Medium bodied, soft mouthfeel with medium carbonation. No real alcohol presence.

Overall: Great in all other aspects, but a bit of a letdown in the taste. There's some nice complexity there, but the sweetness is a bit distracting. If the sweetness were turned down and the sourness/acidity turned up a bit, this would be excellent. It's worth a try if you haven't had it, but if you're looking for a regular Flanders Red fix, just stick to Rodenbach Grand Cru

Photo of mallthus
3.86/5  rDev -7.2%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

So, I need to admit a prejudice against Flemmish reds as I go into this review. As a self admitted hop adict, it's just not my "go to" style. Nonetheless I went ahead and ordered a 350ml bottle tonight and I was favorably impressed.

As others have noted, this guy brings a Great pour to the table. I was impressed, but, alas, my beer was too cold, so I had to cuddle it for a while. Once warmed, a lot of the sour notes mellowed out and it became quite drinkable.

Still, I had the feeling I was missing something. Perhaps it's just my palate, but the sour notes overpowered everything else the beer might have had to offer.

Based on past experiences with Belgians, I toyed with the idea that food might help, so I paired some frites with mayo with it. Much to my surprise, the salt on the frites really did a number on this one, opening up a whole new range if flavors I hadn't noticed before.

So, word of caution. Come to this knowing it'll taste profoundly different from almost anything else you'll easily find.

As always, my 2¢ only...

Photo of mullenite
3.86/5  rDev -7.2%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Poured from a 750ml bottle the ber showed a very dark red, opaque in the middle but translucent blood red on the edges. White head that had excellent retention and left a beautiful lacing on the glass.

Smell was a little bit less sour than on tap, the balsamic smell stood out more from the bottle.

Taste from the bottle was exactly as it was on draft, sour cherries, candy, with a smooth balsamic finish. I enjoyed this was a beef roast and it was excellent.

Very light carbonation but worked as an absolutely wonderful drink to go with dinner. Very clean drinking beer.

I still could not drink more than one glass of this in a sitting unless I was eating a large meal with it and needed more than one glass to accompany my meal.

Photo of Earthchild180
3.86/5  rDev -7.2%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Before this beer, for funky beers I have only had Allagash Interlude, which I LOVED. My friend and I picked up a bottle at the local co-op to go with brie, fruit, and crackers. Split two ways between an eight ounce ball jar and a four ounce tulip glass. I got the eight ouncer :-P

Just as a side note, my bottle clearly says 6%abv, so not sure why it says 6.2% on this site.

A- Poured with a perfect 1-2 finger head in each glass. Head is smooth and even. Color is a crystal clear brilliant red. No yeast sediment in bottle- perhaps they filtered it at bottling??

S- Interesting smell. On initial opening of bottle there was a very strong fruity/vinegary smell of kombucha. Upon pouring this changed to have a slight kombucha nose initially fading to malty/fruity oak.

T- Whoa! Not what I was expecting! First sip started with a nice balance of clean tart fruitiness and malt. This quickly changed to a very strong musky bitterness reminiscent of sour milk, which quickly changed again so a slightly syrupy malty tartness. A whole lot going on in this beer. The oak flavor was not as up front as the aroma suggested. If it weren't for the moderately offensive musky bitterness and the abrupt changes in flavor with each sip, I might have given this section better than a 3.5 rating. I would say that nothing was "smooth" about the drinking experience. The flavors didn't really change much as we got through the bottle.

M- An odd contrast between a slight thick syrupiness and a thin dryness- perhaps from the blending of old and new beer?

O- If it weren't for the musky bitterness, I think I would have loved this beer. It was beautiful, smelled divine, but with that musky bitterness and how the beer's flavor changed so rapidly during each sip that it was hard to relax and appreciate the subtle flavors as they slowly evolve on the pallet. Don't think I will be getting another one of these any time soon, but I would certainly like to continue trying the wild/sour beers that the US and Europe have to offer.

Photo of BARFLYB
3.86/5  rDev -7.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

750ml bottle poured into a oversized DFH snifter+ a small wine glass. Thanks Birradr14

Duchesse De Bourgogne graces a dark brown look from afar. Up towards brightness, a red mixture with orange patches and a mahogany screen. A lucious creamy bright vanilla head rose about a inch or so creating snowflake lace.

Her scent comprises of a dose of dark fruit with apple slices and minimal pear. Being a flanders red ale, Duchesse brings vinegar and it is the most forward out of any flanders red i've had. Hops are not a factor here. A sweet shot of vanilla and some oak from the barrel.

Holy sweet vinegar birdman, it is the main contender. Vinegar forward with dark fruits following (apples upfront) with a vanilla or light cream finish. Some pear and cherry. The oak is really prominent in the bottle. On tap, Duchesse is very sweet and the vinegar comes out a bit more, I like this version better. Not really tart or sour.

This has a light to medium body. The carbonation is present and expected from the pop of the cork. It works well. The liquid goes down kind of smooth. I dont find this to be tart or sour in the least bit, although there is some slight acidity on the tounge. This is quite smooth and easy going. The sweetness sticks around for a while (vanilla) but not as much than the on tap version IMO.

This is great beer. Not high in alcohol and the ladies sem to love it. I prefer the bottle version and would prefer the smaller version, I couldent take to much more than that. Big bottles are great for sharing. This would go well with some dark meats. With all this said Out of all the flanders red's I've had it's low in ranking because of the over the top vinegar taste, I've had better.

Photo of francisweizen
3.86/5  rDev -7.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

A very interesting and tasty Belgian beer. This beer pours a nice dark amber, hazy blood-reddish colour with a nice sized head. It has the aromas of oak, vinegar, sour fruit, tartness, horse blanket, and cherries. It tastes of tart flavors, oak, and cherries. It reminds me of Unibroues Quelque Chose mixed with Liefmans Goudenband. The mouthfeel is creamy and thick and the drinkability is good once you get past the sourness. This beer is a mix of a young beer and an aged beer. It is aged in oaken casks in Belgium. When this beer warms the flavors become more complex and the tartness is enhanced.
A classic example of this style, I am told. I would like to try more Flemish Reds!
Cheers!
-F

Photo of ehammond1
3.85/5  rDev -7.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

On Tap

Churchill's Pub & Grille
San Marcos, CA

A dark ruby and chestnut brown. Nearly no head. Decent lacing down the glass.

Tart sourness, some vinegar, and lots of sweet cherries. The cherries and sweet fruit stand out far more than in other Flanders Reds I've had. A very sweet, though tart and pleasant, aroma.

Taste follows the nose nearly identically. While this is sour, I wish it was even more so, as the cherry sweetness is a bit dominating and makes this beer just a bit too sweet and one note.

Medium bodied and somewhat sharp, though a pleasure to drink.

A great introductory beer for the style, especially for someone who may prefer sweeter beers, but it's a bit too sweet for my personal likings.

Photo of RomanW70
3.85/5  rDev -7.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours dark reddish brown with a frothy tan head. Aroma a combination of sweet and sour cherries. Very sweet up front, flowing into a mild sour and finishing smooth with a slight vineous tartness. Med-low carbonation. Medium mouthfeel. Good beer, bit would like to see more sweet/sour balance. A little heavy on the sweet side.

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

On-tap at the Farmhouse in Emmaus, PA. Served, post-dinner, in a large wine glass, murky brown with no head. This beer reminds me of Goudenband. The beer menu described this as having chocolate-covered raisin flavors, and I think that's a bit of a stretch. Certainly, there is a pairing of sweet candy and sour flavors, and I can find raisins in here, but no chocolate. This beer is not that much of a dessert beer. For it's creamy mix of flavor (which also includes salad vinaigrette) it's not an incredibly drinkable beer, but it is a semi-approachable sour ale that drinks a bit like a thick hard cider. Not my favorite, but a beer to try if you're into the wild styles.

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

Poured from 11.2oz bottle.

A- Pours a clear reddish brown color. One finger tan head shows medium retention. Light lacing left on the glass.

S- Big red wine like vinegar mess upfront. Ok..maybe I shouldn't say mess but very much the standout aroma. Light cherries in the middle to backing of this beer. Band-aid like aroma lingers here and there rounding out most of the aroma. No real alcohol in the nose.

T- Sour puckering vinegar notes right off the bat. There is a light nutty malt in the middle mixed with a cherry flavor. Some oaky notes and back to the cherry acidic tones. Very backend shows more green apple tones then anything else.

M- Medium mouthfeel. Carbonatoin is good for the style I would say. Cherries and vinegar left on the palate with some green apple aftertaste. Flavors blended well with this beer but the vinegar lasts over and through most of them. Light drying on the palate after each sip.

D- This was a good beer that I was glad to try. A perfect amount came in the bottle and left me really not wanting anymore. I would do yourself a favor and seek this beer out.

Photo of ocelot2500
3.85/5  rDev -7.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a deep reddish brown that has a small off white head that leaves a layer of lacing on the glass.

Smells of sour cherries, apple cider, and a little red wine.

Tastes of a big apple cider vinegar taste. A little sweetness to cut the sour, but the sourness takes full stage. Fruits again are found in the sweetness with the likes of cherries, apple, grapes, and plums.

Mouthfeel is a solid medium a prickly amount of carbonation that is a little harsh.

Photo of ne0m00re
3.85/5  rDev -7.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3

Poured the 33 cL glass into an oversized red wine glass to capture the aroma. Best by date: March 18, 2011.
A: Mahogany with ruby hues and a clear body. Poured with a thick tan film, which died to a good lace.
S: Tart raisin, cranberry granny smith apples with earthy, musty notes.
T: Very sweet and tart cranberry/cherry sparkling grape juice. It is extremely fruity with toffee, walnut and pecan flavors.
M: Very syrupy with a soda-like carbonation.
D: This is too sweet to have many in a row, but it is quite mild and refreshing like sparkling juice.

Photo of straightlambic
3.85/5  rDev -7.5%

Photo of runningjoke
3.85/5  rDev -7.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3

Poured into tulip glass.

Reddish brown with thin head and head retention,

Smells of sour cherry, balsamic vinegar, yeast, touch of malty breadiness.

Tastes of balsamic vinegar, cherry and altbier.
Alcohol is totally covered by these strong flavors. No bitterness just tartness in its place. Really almost like a desert wine.

Feels thick and slick, but not unpleasent.

I would not be able to handle too many of these.

This would be really good with vanilla ice cream or a plain cheesecake. A killer reduction sauce could be made out of this stuff.

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

Very unusual, although I am not well-versed in this style, so perhaps they are all like this! Rye or pumpernickel nose. Very fruity and malty tasting. Not much head, but highly carbonated. Slightly tastes like dry cider. Tastes more alcoholic than it supposedly is. Quite an interesting beer, and certainly worth at least trying.

Photo of Suds
3.85/5  rDev -7.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 2.5

Now this is something interesting! I completely didn’t expect the flavor of this brew.
It pours a dark, deep, rich brown and red. The carbonation is extreme, contributing to a huge, soft, tan head. Amazing lace. The aroma is wild and strange…both acid and sugar, yeast, cherries, smoke, berries, candy, vinegar, and countless other sensations. Wooo….the smell alone is dizzying with complexity. The taste is out of this world….sweet and sour…cloying and mouth-puckering. It’s a mashed-up dichotomy of unexpected flavors. Again, extraordinary strange….I can see that this one’s not going to be for everyone. Thin to medium mouthfeel, with a lot of prickly effervescence. I personally didn’t find it extremely drinkable….it’s an experience, and good (without a doubt), but it’s also tongue-taxing and the acidity got to me.

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

Poured from a 550ml bottle at the Playground in Santa Ana, CA. Reviewed from notes.

A- Pours a finger high white head. Ruby red color. Good carbonation.

S- Red wine and alcohol smells.

T- Tastes like a sour champagne. Hoppy and delicious.

M- Light bodied, vinous and finishes astringently.

O-First Flanders Red. I like it a lot.

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

Had on tap at Anam Cara, and I enjoyed this one. I am liking this style! Anyway, pour when served was the dark burgundy, no head. It had a rather muted aroma, although I thought there were some kriek like notes. I found it easy to drink, more sweet than sour, with some cinnamon powder like taste and texture in the finish. I am intrigued by the sweet vs sour experiences of the other reviewers when trying this beer. Maybe it has an evil twin? I liked this, and would get again.

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

Deep brown, with amber and ruby colored prisms reflecting from each angle, the nose is distinctly aromatic of balsamic vinegar, as suggested by the storekeep. Bubbling on the lips and then sweetly settling on the tongue, blossoming out with initial flavors of vinegar down the center, with more robust fruits, cinnamon adn dark break congealing at the back of the throat, yet leaving a dryness in the mouth. Smooth throughout and surprisingly complex, but odd in the fact that sour vinegar is predominant. That makes it difficult completely without a food accompaniment, but well worth the try and oddly enjoyable.

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

A: Pours a brown-red amber, with a finger or so of off white head, with very good retention and lacing. Almost cola-like, with a better head.

S: Strong molasses and dark fruit.

T: Quite fruity, slightly sour, different.

M: Lots of carbonation, medium to full bodied.

D: Not too bad given the sourness.

Photo of StJamesGate
3.84/5  rDev -7.7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Deep chestnut with creamy beige head that fades to film.
Balsamic, cranberry, wood and dark candy sugar.
Raspberry vinagrette, a speck of chocolate, a vanilla oak hit and berry jam.
Winey finish and tart cherry skin linger.
Medium, chewy, creamy but clean.

Surprisingly sweet, some vinegar and wood but lots of red fruit sugar. Expected Brett or at least some big yeast but there's no funk at all. Oud Bruin more than Flanders Red.

Nice, just not so interesting.

Photo of astronautjones
3.84/5  rDev -7.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

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Duchesse De Bourgogne from Brouwerij Verhaeghe
93 out of 100 based on 3,612 ratings.