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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

3,355 Ratings
THE BROS
94
outstanding

(view ratings)
Ratings: 3,355
Reviews: 1,369
rAvg: 4.16
pDev: 13.7%
Wants: 155
Gots: 384 | 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: 3,355 | Reviews: 1,369 | Display Reviews Only:
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.

Gehrig, Jun 23, 2008
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.

USCTrojanBrian, Jun 20, 2008
Photo of callmescraps
3.7/5  rDev -11.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Grabbed this guy based on some interesting reviews. Definitely excited to try something different. Expiration of 12/09, so should be no problems there.

Appearance - A deep, dark amber, almost brown, with a solid couple inches of head.

Smell - Super funk. Sour apples, some almost sweat-sock mustiness with serious earthiness. You gotta rate this smell for what it is. Not exactly a bouquet of roses here, but funky in the way it's supposed to be.

Taste - Um, hard to say. It comes with some serious sourness. I mean serious. Then it comes with some sticky sweetness. Almost some honey. Then some booziness. Reminds me of a super-hard cider.

Mouthfeel - Hard to judge because there is so much going on with the flavor. Nothing special.

Drinkability - Gotta be below average. This is super intense, super sour, and good in its' way, but you only need one. Some people just won't like it, and that makes sense.

Um. Wow. This is a funky, smelly, sticky sweet, deep as hell combo. It's good, almost undrinkable. Definitely worth a shot though, I'm going to polish this guy off.

callmescraps, Jun 19, 2008
Photo of MiScusi
2.45/5  rDev -41.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2

Had this out of a bottle at The Trappist in Oakland. Just want to compare this to other Flanders style red ale's I've had. This thing has only a very mild tartness to it. It is sugary sweet though. VERY sweet. Way too sweet. Excruciatingly sweet. Nice fruit quality but man is it backed by sugary sweetness. Very hard for me to drink.

MiScusi, Jun 15, 2008
Photo of julian
4.13/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: pours a vibrant chestnut color, semi opaque with visible carbonation and a 1 finger or less frothy tan head from a vigorous pour. intricate and thick lacing lines the glass from the first sip on down.

S: mildly alcoholic and vinegary to the nose, mostly aromas of sour apples, cherries with a good balance of malting.

T: This is my first flanders red ale. tastes very similar to a Lindeman's lambic. tastes of sour apples, cherries. Somewhat dry and earthy taste. tastes a little too sweet, so IMO it's a little unbalanced. no apparent alcoholic taste.

M: high carbonation at first but quickly lessens in your throat when swallowed where it feels almost mildly syrupy.

D: This tastes a bit too fruity and sweet to be a session beer but otherwise it's a great red ale, and a great all around beer.

julian, Jun 12, 2008
Photo of PiecefulToker
4.13/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This was my first flander's red, and wow was I impressed. This beer is awesome.

At first glance, it poured a beautiful bergundy brown color, with a nice 1 finger head that lasted quite a while. Nice lacing down the glass.

S: It smells like sweet, delicate, fruity wine.

T: Wow, this beer is amazing, sweet, but with a nice sourness that comes in. It has wine like character that I really enjoy.

M: Excellent. Smooth, yet it has a great tingling carbonation to it.

D: I would only want one of these ever so often because they are so delicious, I could easily get addicted.

PiecefulToker, Jun 09, 2008
Photo of SLeffler27
4.22/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

The tulip glass fills with an orange-brown clear elixir blanketed with a big almond head that slowly recedes to a beautiful lace.

Strong, vinegary yeast with woody mulch fills the nose.

The duchess is dry, like a carbonated wine, but tart with cherry and strong oak flavors.

An odd combination of carbonated syrup which presents its alcohol much higher than the stated 6%.

This one's a little sharp, but would pair well with cigars and conversation.

SLeffler27, Jun 08, 2008
Photo of animal69
4/5  rDev -3.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

date coded ??-07-09, pours a deep a copper-brown w/ a fluffy off-white head which dissipates a bit quickly leaving a decent lacing behind in my snifter ; an interesting smell, a sourdough bread aroma at first, backed by apple and caramels with a cider vinegar note ; a sweet, tart, vinous flavor, tastes fruity and somewhat metallic , some cereal grain and a bit of toffee and darker fruit midway, but subtle, almost reminds me of wine or champagne, a very faint bit of herbal hop and wood present as well ; a light-med body, a funny feel, tho, i think it's pretty dry in the mouth, yet has a sweet taste, a good amount of co2 makes it almost thick ; an interesting brew, my first flanders, so have no comparison, but def. drinkable...

animal69, Jun 07, 2008
Photo of dstc
3.68/5  rDev -11.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Pours a dark ruby/brown color with a decent head that is tan in color with hints of a pinkish hue. Decent head retention and mild lacing.

Complex aroma. Sweet, a little malty and I'm getting a whiff that oddly enough reminds me of vinegar.

A lot of interesting flavor. Fruity, sour and tart with a dry finish and bit of sweetness lingering

Medium bodied and smooth in the mouth with a nice balance of carbonation.

Overall a decent beer but a bit too sweet/tart/fruity for me.

dstc, Jun 05, 2008
Photo of nickfl
3.98/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A - Two fingers of light brown head tops the clear, amber-brown body.

S - Sour and malty with a bit of caramel and pepper.

T - Sweet and sour. Fruity notes of black currants and lemon. Lots of malt and a bit of caramel.

M - Medium to light body and medium carbonation.

D - Very drinkable with a nice interplay between the sweet and sour flavors. Not too complex, but very satisfying.

nickfl, Jun 05, 2008
Photo of Cyberkedi
4.08/5  rDev -1.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

This comes out of the tap a beautiful opaque chocolate brown, very appetizing. Strong aroma is more like a hard apple cider than a beer. Flavor is mouth-filling and pleasing; apple taste dominates, and there is a hint of hop bitterness. Finish is very smooth and cider-like.

Cyberkedi, Jun 01, 2008
Photo of MrHungryMonkey
3.63/5  rDev -12.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 2.5

Incredibly sweet smelling brew. There's a good vinegar smell to it. Smells like a sweet red wine vinegar - how puzzling.

Dark root beer color, seems clear, good-sized foamy head.

As expected it is oddly sweet. Soy sauce comes to mind, as well as vinegar. Good bit of tartness grows to battle with the sweet. Brown sugar sweetness, or maybe it's more like a Port with its syrup sweetness and accompanying viscosity. Finish lingers with sweetness and an overall funky feeling in the mouth. Very interesting and fun to have tried.

Reminds me of the one Oud Bruin I've had: too sweet and very peculiar. I had a Flanders Red at a homebrew competition and it was twice as tart and not half as sweet. I liked it a lot. This one is just borderline undrinkable to me. I suppose my palate is too young for the likes of Flanders.

MrHungryMonkey, May 29, 2008
Photo of AltBock
4.15/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

I was able to try this Flanders Red Ale on-tap at Teresa's Next Door on 5/23/2008. They served it to me in a goblet/wine glass.

Duchess poured a beautiful dark crimson red color. It almost looked like somebody poured cranberry jucie into a goblet for me. It was probably the glass that did this, but on top of this beer was a small quarter of an inch head of white foam. What was there had really good retention that left behind foamy white rings along the edge and a fair amount of white lace around the glass.

The aroma was rich, sweet, and sour with sour cherries, sour green grapes, a hint of sour raspberries, a splash of yeast, and some toasted oak in the back. It was so good that I kept going back for more. It's just what a Flanders Red Ale should smell like!

The taste had mostly the same flavors in it that the aroma had, but it tasted like I was drinking a sour and sweet candy beer. I'm not joking, it was that sweet. The taste was sweet and sour with sour cherries, dried and toasted oak, and a hint of yeast at the finish. Even though they took away a few sour fruits, I still enoyed the taste of this this Flanders Sour.

The mouthfeel was on the light side that contained a nice sized aftertaste of sweet and sour cherries, a hint of toasted oak, and a speck of yeast. This aftertase will linger on for a minute or two after the beer has left your mouth.

If you like sour beers that aren't too sour, but that are more sweet, then you'll like this one. For me, it was a joy to try this one on-tap and I can't see why not why this wouldn't be a joy to try if it came from a bottle. I would love to give this beer another go!

AltBock, May 25, 2008
Photo of aerozeppl
4.33/5  rDev +4.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

A: Super deep brownish red color. Eggshell white head with a nice amount of lacing.

S: Funky musthouse. Beyond this powerful smell you do get hints of cherries. Malt. Tons of sour and tart hints.

T: Damn. Really really complex. Starts off tart. Not mouth collapsing into itself tart but enough to remind you what this is. Then it goes into a cool sweetness. Hints of honey and cherries. Malt is in there as well. Hints of nuts and the barrel abound.

M: Medium body with a slightly thick tone to it. Good light carbonation.

D: The most drinkable example of this style I have had so far. At 6% why not?

aerozeppl, May 24, 2008
Photo of Avryle
3.98/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A- Dark tea in color. Small & quickly disappearing fizzy tan head. Spotty lacing .

S- Like old wet shoes, caramel, oak and rotting cherries. The nose is a little off-putting & frankly, not my thing.

T- Okay, the taste is much better than the nose. Extraordinarily complex taste going on- malt, caramel, raisins, figs, cherries & apples are the initial tastes that come to mind. The cherries dominate in the finish along with caramel malts. Almost candy-like in sweetness.

M- Thin to medium bodied. low carbonation.

D- Flavors are very complex, but not confusing. That along with tehe body makes this pretty darn drinkable... If you plug your nose.

Avryle, May 24, 2008
Photo of clayrock81
4.18/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Poured into a snifter glass and received a two-finger head that died quickly on top of a dark brown with purple tints (think brown grapefruit juice) body. Some caramel and citric notes like grapefruit and pear, along with a light malt presence and oak (sort of reminded me a cab sauv) in the smell. An excellent tart citrus taste, like cherries (and oranges; acidicness), mixed w/ caramel and chocolate malt and oak. A medium to full body that goes down smooth with a wine-like aftertaste (a tad sour) and carbonation. Good fruitiness in there (sort of reminded me of a Belgian triple, and this is a Belgian afterall), but maybe a little too sour/fruity for a complete sessioning, but this is one damn good beer that you must try if you haven't already.

clayrock81, May 22, 2008
Photo of jjayjaye
4.22/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a deep mahogany red with a shallow foamy light tan head that resists fading. A good amount of lacing observed. The smell is a tart dry berries sensation, cherries maybe. Substantially effervescent with a tangy tartness, the mouth feel is medium bodied. Full flavored cherry explosion finishes somewhat on the dry side. A wonderful cherry aftertaste lingers appropriately. A very easy drinker. The 6.2% ABV is integrated well. I've been eying this one for a while. Highly recommend giving it a try.

jjayjaye, May 14, 2008
Photo of smttycty
4.43/5  rDev +6.5%
look: 3 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Though I love my late-night after-work mini mart with it's good selection of single bottles, my luck at finding imports that haven't been staring at the UV lighting too long is about 50/50. I asked the clerk to fetch me a bottle of this one from the back side of the reach-in. At almost $0.50 per ounce, I wanted to improve my odds.

The dark tea-colored body was clear, the off-tan rocky crown short -lived, and the lacing minimal. But once I shoved my nose into the snifter, it didn't want to come out. I found a nuanced melange of tart fruit, rich chocolate, fig pudding, and sherry.

A few local brewers have been trying their hands at this style, but my first sip washed away all expectations for another "learn-to-like-it" vinegary concoction. This beer is all silk and satan. Tart cherries and granny smith apples wrapped in a softly spiced European pastry. With no bitter flavors to be found, the wonderful yeast qualities are testament to the attention payed to the blending of the newer and older vintages. As the flavors slowly dissipate the sweet flavors at the front of the mouth are fully distinguishable from the tart flavors in back.

Light bodied and very lively without being sharp, kind of a thick blanket of effervescence. Like a vacation I don't want to leave, I'll come back again and again.

smttycty, May 12, 2008
Photo of GJ40
4.1/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Sampled from a 750ml bottle in a chalice. I love the Rodenbach Grand Cru and Casey at Jose Pistola's in Philly recommended this one so I had to give it a try.

A deep brown color with a hint of red. Not much head on this one and it dissipates quickly. Aroma is mostly fruity (cherries) but with a malt sweetness in the background. The flavor starts sweet and jumps into a tartness but it isn't as intense and doesn't linger quite as long as a Rodenbach.

I like this beer a lot but I wouldn't rate it as highly as the Rodenbach Grand Cru.

GJ40, May 09, 2008
Photo of JBogan
4.38/5  rDev +5.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Poured a dark brown with ruby tint, a slightly off white small head which left somewhat quickly and left moderate lacing.

Smelled mostly of sour cherries, with a bit of raisin and alcohol present as well.

Tasted of sour cherries with a hint of alcohol warming.

Mouthfeel was very good. Smooth and medium bodied yet with a perfect amount of carbonation sting.

This was a very drinkable beer, yet it doesn't come cheap. It also seem to have a much higher ABV than advertised. Overall I will most certainly revisit this one again, yet save it for special occasions as it's priced a bit too dear for daily consumption.

JBogan, May 09, 2008
Photo of treehugger02010
4.47/5  rDev +7.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

I don't remember what store I got this from, but it was somewhere is New Jersey. I poured it into a snifter.
Appearance: A brown body that was pretty much translucent with a tan head on top. The retention was great and the lacing was pretty darn good as well.
Smell: A bit of an oxidized aroma, but past that there was dark fruits, mostly tart, hints of a solid malt backbone.
Taste: Very tart, dark fruit, not much hop presence. Not much to say but wonderful.
Mouthfeel: Rigid yet gentile.
Drinkability: Awesome.
Don't drink and review.

treehugger02010, May 02, 2008
Photo of weissbierdrinker
4.22/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bought a bottle of this in Brussles.

It pours a dark redish brown with a tall tan head that leaves thick lacing around the glass.

Smell is like sour cherries and also has a kind of sweet fruitiness to it.

It starts out slightly sweet as it enters your mouth but quickly truns to a sour syrupy cherry like taste that is not at all unpleasent, if you like that sort of thing.

Very interesting beer that is worht a try. I would drink it again

weissbierdrinker, Apr 30, 2008
Photo of Slynger
4.22/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

The Duchesse pours a deep but clear, brownish, red-amber color, with a fuzzy light sand colored lid.

The smell is sweet and sour with both sugared and tart cherries. Red grapes show as well, with a red wine/vinegar character that is quite pleasant.

Medium bodied with a crisp and zesty, yet creamy, carbonation. Lightly sharp of sugar and lightly acidic vinegar. A pleasant sugary caramel malt and red grape juice sweetness blends excellently with tart cherries, light red wine, and lightly tart cider vinegar. Lightly sweet oak rounds it out a fine brew.

Very much enjoyed the Duchesse. Very well balanced; the flavors flow together seemlessly. Definitely the best Flanders Red I've tried, though they've been few.

Slynger, Apr 25, 2008
Photo of CanuckRover
3.78/5  rDev -9.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Dark brown with a reddish tinge. Huge off-white meringue'y head. Thick lacings coat the glass.

Vinegar, cherries and caramel sweetness.

Sour cherries up front. Malt is sweet and sticky, toffee. Sour granny smith apples. Slight smokiness. Wood comes through in the finish.

Mouthfeel didn't float my boat, I think it may have gone a bit flat. Will have to try another.

CanuckRover, Apr 22, 2008
Photo of dill
4.38/5  rDev +5.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

poured from an 11.5 oz bottle into a flute glass.

A - deep amber in color with a thin white head.

S - smells of vinegar and some fruits.

T - taste is similar with a sour vinegary note as well as fruit juice.

M - creamy mouthfeel with a tight carbonation.

D - one of the more drinkable flanders reds i have had. this one is really good.

dill, Apr 22, 2008
Duchesse De Bourgogne from Brouwerij Verhaeghe
93 out of 100 based on 3,355 ratings.