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Duchesse De Bourgogne - Brouwerij Verhaeghe

Not Rated.
Duchesse De BourgogneDuchesse De Bourgogne

Educational use only; do not reuse.

1,441 Reviews

(Read More)
Reviews: 1,441
Hads: 3,883
Avg: 4.1
pDev: 23.17%
Wants: 211
Gots: 690 | FT: 12
Brewed by:
Brouwerij Verhaeghe visit their website

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: Reviews & Ratings
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Duchesse De Bourgogne Alström Bros
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Reviews: 1,441 | Hads: 3,883
Photo of headlessparrot
4.21/5  rDev +2.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

This beer. Codename: Duchess. . . .

As a reviewer below put it, if you don't like this beer, you don't like the Flanders Red Ale style. Which is fine--more for me. My preference runs to Rodenbach Grand Cru, but this is a pretty remarkable beer as well. Pours a dark, thick cola colour, capped by a finger of quickly disappating foam that does leave a few islands and some decent lacing.

Smell is balsamic vinegar, sour cherries, slight vanilla. brown sugar. Slight farm-y funk. Delightful. Taste is much the same. Very sweet and tart, with a vinegar-y note. Tons of cherry, slightly vinous. Brown sugar. Slightly milky. Rich body, moderate carbonation. The more pronounced vinegar note might turn folks off of this, and it doesn't have the pronounced cherry flavour of the Rodenbach, but this is certainly a world-class beer.

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Photo of Mnigro
4.97/5  rDev +21.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

I have had a number of Flanders Reds, from traditionals like DdB and Rode to the Bruery offerings. To future reviewers, if this beer doesn't blow your socks off, this style isn't for you.

If I could fill a bathtub with this stuff and soak in it, I would. Fruity, funky, tart, smooth. It's freaking wonderful beer. My favorite of this style and probably any style.

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Photo of Mike_Aguirre
4.51/5  rDev +10%
look: 4.75 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

I just tried this beer yesterday. Pours deep red, like an old wine with a very wide white foam head, excellent retention. Smell is fruity, acid and acetic. Taste is complex, acid, sour, acetic, some fruits, it improves with temperature and breathing. Great beer, different but nice for advanced craft beer drinkers.

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Photo of MrDell
4.68/5  rDev +14.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

Brouwerij Verhaeghe - Duchesse De Bourgogne
6.0% - 25cl bottle - Best before 28.04.2017

Appearance: Very deep red, almost brown. Tan coloured head. Very small bubbles fast moving carbonation. Lots of lacing left on the teku glass by this beautiful red beer.

Aroma: Funk! Balsamic vinegar, acidic red fruits and… Fiberglass resin?

Taste: Lots of fruity acidity. Very refreshing and thirst quenching. I didn't really like the only beer of this style I have tried before (Rodenbach grand cru) early on in my beer tasting days as I was shocked by the sour flavours but my tastes are constantly changing and I have to say, I like this one a lot! Big hit of sweet raspberries and strawberries up front, turning sour in the middle and then tart in the finish. Quite complex and very moreish - shame the bottle is only 25cl!

Mouthfeel: Low in body. Makes the palate shrivel a little being so tart, carbonation works the beer around the palate well.

Overall: As I said before I was overwhelmed and shocked by the sourness of certain beers early on in my road to enlightenment but this beer is fantastic and may well be a gateway drug to sours for me. It’s difficult for me to give this Flanders Red Ale a rating as I know very little about the style, I do know that this one is a blend of 8 and 18 month old beers that have matured in oak casks. For enjoyment factor. I am however going to rate this at 9.75 / 10 purely on how much I enjoyed it. Really looking forward to trying more of this style.

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Photo of ZinFanDave
4/5  rDev -2.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

The initial aroma was distinctive of Worcestershire sauce and it remained throughout to the end. Interesting balance of sour and roasted malts with the toasty oak.

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Photo of LAp
4.54/5  rDev +10.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

750mL bottle, poured into snifters. Pours a murky reddish-brown that, when held to the light gleams a brilliant ruby red. Tan-brown head leaving moderate pooled lacing. Dark fruit on the nose, with heavy balsamic vinegar undertones. On the palate, the balsamic vinegar notes leap to the fore, but give way to saccarine strawberry. The flavor progresses to a broader array of dark fruits. Mouthfeel is light on the carbonation, yielding a creamier texture that suits the complexity of the beer. Outstanding for pairing with food. Overall, a simply excellent beer.

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Photo of DJ-Hophead
4.21/5  rDev +2.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

250 ml bottle Belgium Beer Company. Pours dark brown withn a large foamy tan head. Medium carbonation. Nice lacing. Smell - Ripened stone fruits, grassy tones. Taste - Sweet, medium sour notes, light crisp finish. Lush.

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Photo of jmasher85
4.7/5  rDev +14.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

One fancy birthday dinner at a French bistro and a splurge on an expensive beer I'd been eyeing for a while later, and I've just found a new classic jaw-dropper of a beer! I've had sour beers, I've had red ales, I've had more than a few Belgians, but I guess somehow the Flanders Red Ale style has either gone under my radar or I've simply not been blown away by others I've had enough to remember them. But as of now, I pledge my allegiance to the Duchesse.

The smell and taste work so well and complementary with each other, it's almost impossible to separate them into different ratings. Sour, for sure, but not heavily so - just a nice rich pucker. There is a lightly fermented funk and barnyard smell coming out of this, and the taste is like fermented fruit in a way that might almost be unpleasant, but is just interesting enough that it's captivating instead. The taste is of tart cherries, a hint of strawberry, some earthy, yeasty tones, and is just delicious. The 11.2 oz bottle is the perfect amount - any more and it would be a sensory overload and the sourness and funk would overwhelm the positive traits.

Sweet, savory, sour, funky, rich, light - this beer has a little of everything! I have to try a few more of the style before I can make a good comparison, but for now, this is going into my new top ten.

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Photo of flyingpig
3.45/5  rDev -15.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

330ml bottle from Whole Foods Market, Giffnock, Scotland:
Quite a sour and tart beer but definitely not as strong in those departments as I'd been expecting when compared to some other Belgian sours that I've tried over the years. The nose in particular is quite a complex one with some good sweetness off the back of the fruits and a nice balance as well; a very nice beer and one well worth trying if you get the chance.

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Photo of dro7
1.22/5  rDev -70.2%
look: 3 | smell: 1 | taste: 1 | feel: 1 | overall: 1.5

I was very excited to try this. I thought it would be interesting since it's a mix of 8 and 18 month ales mixed, but boy was I wrong. Smell and tasted extremely vinegary and funky. I like sours, but this was not good at all. It has no fruity sourness to it, just funky vinegar.

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Photo of HopsForBrains
4.18/5  rDev +2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Heavy ruby-red color, voluminous notes of balsamic vinegar, taste is sweet with a nice finish. Overall this is really good beer but I would prefer it to be higher in alcohol content for what it's offering.

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Photo of SeanMNCraftBeerLover
2.32/5  rDev -43.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 1.75 | feel: 1.75 | overall: 2.25

Well I don't know what happened here... Was exited to have it... Looked great... Smelled decent.... Then all hell broke loose once it hit the lips. Maybe it was a bad line but damn this was not a good beer.

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Photo of Bruno74200
4.21/5  rDev +2.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Look : pour a clouded brown with no head
Smell : almost only balsamic vinegar, something else but i can't say what
Taste: quite peculiar taste, vinegar, but some other more complicated notes
Feel : reassuring feeling
Overall: really good oak aged ale, can be used as a crossover for people that don't like beer because it tastes nothing like beer or maybe something acidulous like a lambic

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Photo of iRikal
1.89/5  rDev -53.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 1 | feel: 1 | overall: 2

Looks good... but look can be deceiving.

I guess i'm not the Flanders (ookeley dookeley) Red type of guy because the taste of this beer did NOT please me at all. I took 2 sips... ended in the sink.

My dog, who drinks anything didn't like it either... I guess he has the same tastebuds.

But it looks good....

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Photo of WhiskeyMax
4.31/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Pour into tulip a cloudy brown with a light head that laced all the way down.
Smell was nice, with a tart cherry bran muffin notes. Smells more like wine than beer.
Taste was less sour than I expected in a way that was delightful. Oh the wonderful dark fruits
Feels nice, a light bit of syrup with little carbonation.
Overall I thought this a delicious beer that I will definitely drink again.

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Photo of Cthulhusquid
2.75/5  rDev -32.9%
look: 5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Look: Dark brownish red, blood red when held up to light. Head seemed to retain well.

Smell: Nose of red wine and balsamic vinegar. Notes of cherry and caramel.

Taste: Same as above.

Feel: Creamy and smooth up front with an acidic bite in back. I feel that it was waaaaay too vinegary for my tastes.

Overall Impression: Very interesting. Definitely (and I really mean that) an acquired taste, but intriguing enough for me to try more of the style. It was quite hard to finish the last third of the glass, though.

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Photo of dd43
4.09/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

This beer was actually less sour than I was anticipating, and the malt sweetness was a bit more pronounced. Light vinegar note to start off with, and an apple cider suggestion in the aroma. It drinks very much like a tart, velvety soda. I think a more tactile barrel character would have been welcome. I rather enjoyed this beer and while I would not rank it higher than rodenbach grand cru, it was extreme quaffable in its own right.

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Photo of stakem
3.61/5  rDev -12%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.5

750ml corked and caged offering that I have cellared for several years. In fact, ive held on to this too long as I see I have surpassed the best by date by 3 years. September 2012 is stamped on the cork. The brew is mahogany in color with a white cap. Ruby clarity is seen along the edges and spotty lace sticks to the glass

The aroma comes off like cider vinegar with some malty sweetness and hints of fruit juice. The taste is tart and fruity like apple cider and cherry juice. Very mild vinegar and residual sweetness with hints of oak. The sweetness here seems more sugary feeling than the typical malt character.

This is light bodied and moderately carbonated. An easy drinking brew but lacking a bit in body/complexity but otherwise quite refreshing.

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Photo of 1000lbgrizzly
4.06/5  rDev -1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Reddish-brown slightly cloudy body, tons of lace, almost to the point of looking like cobwebs. Smell is mostly sour and tart fruit with more than a touch of vinegar that adds some harshness, which I like. Tastes like sour red fruit. Vinegar is gone for the most part, which I'm a little disappointed about, but it really is incredibly sour so nothing is lacking in character. Light bodied, chuggable.
There are delicate but forceful sours, and then there are intense, if a little coarse, ones like this. Does not skimp on character, but the vinegar might dissuade even enthusiastic sour drinkers.

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Photo of Raj
4.07/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

11.2 pour in a tulip glass. best before 2-19-16

A: Love the color. Pours brown, opaque, reddish highlights, tightly packed light tan head that hangs around throughout
S: smells sweet-sour with toasty caramel, balsamic vinegar, apple, cherries, plum skins, get some wood barrel, vanilla on the nose as well.
T: similar to upfront caramel sweetness, toasty malt, candi sugar, candied plums, maraschino cherries, balsamic vinegar, wood, charred wood, vanilla. Very smooth and round.
M: creamy mouth feel, medium carbonation, drinks easy. Very slight alcohol burn.
O: Really good flemish style beer. Even though this is a "sour" the sweet caramel and oak notes are the most prominent flavors. Nice balsamic vinegar and red wine notes. A little sweet for my tastes but it's really nice. This beer is about 18 months after bottling (plus of course the aging after they brew) and the a malt is more prominent, caramelized and toasty than than I remember. But the beer ages really well without any overt signs of oxidation.

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Photo of Madtownbeerguy
4.8/5  rDev +17.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.75

Been a fan of Flemish reds for a few years and for some reason I only just had my first bottle of this. I've heard it spoken of as a "gateway sour," which makes sense. But damn, it is just majestic, whether you've never had a sour or have been drinking them for years. Nose shows raspberries, and surprisingly does not give way to the the deep, slightly viscous and eclectic complexity that's about to unfold. Sweet, but perfectly balanced. Medium sour note, a bit of acid in the middle, hint of pinot noir, and then the most clean smooth finish imaginable. I could easily session a few bombers of this. Reminds me a lot of the New Glarus fruit beer series in its sweetness and acidic funk, bit the sour component pushes it to another level. Phenomenal beer that is a steal at the $12 price point for a 750ml.

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Photo of paulivanovich
4.83/5  rDev +17.8%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Flemish Red is a great mix between Belgian Strong, Sour Ale, and Lambic. Still satisfying in that it's filling like food. Beer is after all, "liquid bread". But otherwise Flemish Red is more like wine than beer.

Best Flemish Red, in my humble opinion. Dry but light like a good Pino Noir. Great mouthfeel: very satisfying in texture and astringent acidity. But not too acidic like my next favorite flemish red, Rodenbach Grand Cru, which is a few bucks cheaper, but not as balanced and subtle.

Colored red more like wine. But hazy and more opaque of course; it is a beer. Light carbonation. Just enough to complement the sharpness of the palate, but not too much to make you bloated. Hats off to this fine character.

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Photo of sjones5045
4.21/5  rDev +2.7%
look: 3.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.25

8/22/15 Home

Bought this on a recommendation from a friend. Cracked it and the smell was very interesting when uncorked. Funk and more funk. Almost a old cheese kind of funk and sour. Once it settled, I reall got a nice sent of sweet cherry and a faint molasses aromas.

Pouring it was a whole other story. I lost a little faith with what looked like a dirty brown color pouring out. The head was ok and once it settled it looked a little more reddish brown and more desirable.

The taste was great. Sweet cherries mashed up into smooth heavenly mix. The oak is far in the background but there just enough. The sweet is very present and seems to build.

If you need to show someone what smooth means, have them drink this. Velvet pillow on your tongue.

Overall, great beer. Maybe the only knock would be a bit to far on the sweeter side but will definitely be keeping these in the fudge and self.

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Photo of Amtchicago
4.6/5  rDev +12.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I have had this beer on more than one occasion and I have never been disappointed. Overall a great representation of the style. If you enjoy the sour spectrum and can appreciate balsamic vinegar qualities, well then give this a try.

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Photo of Myotus
3.92/5  rDev -4.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.25

Poured from an 11.2oz bottle into a tulip.
LOOK: Pours with a half finger's worth of khaki foam that halves itself within 20 seconds. The brew is an unappealing shade of dark brown with an apealing ruby tint on the bottom and a honey orange tint on top. Bubbles are moderate as they rise along the sides of the glass to support the spotty head. Lacing is moderate and is as spotty as the foam head.
SMELL: Has strong aromas of vinegar that combine with mild aromas of earthy yeast, bready malts, raspberries, and oak. Subtle cherry and fig aromas can also be detected.
TASTE: Strong raspberry vinegarete flavors are up front. Seriously. Initial taste is of my favorite salad dressing. Anyways, mild oak and bready malt flavors along with subtle cherry and fig flavors enter immediately after the salad dressing taste as that continues to push on. Finally, mild earthy yeast flavors enter for the finale as all flavors persist in their magnitude.
FEEL: Medium-bodied with a subtle carbonation. Goes down with a mild dryness. The very tart finish agitates the tongue.
NOTE: I see people saying that this had too much of a vinegar flavor, which is very true if it is consumed right out of the fridge. ALLOW BEER TO WARM for the intended taste. Even the bottle says serve between 47°-53°F.

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Duchesse De Bourgogne from Brouwerij Verhaeghe
92 out of 100 based on 1,441 ratings.