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Loving Duvel. Any suggestions?

Discussion in 'Beer Talk' started by shwurr, Jan 14, 2013.

  1. shwurr

    shwurr Disciple (55) California Nov 15, 2012

    I'm relatively new to craft beer snobbery (but a beer lover for 50 years) and had fun getting into IPAs and Imp Stoughts. After getting a little burnt out on hopped up crafts, I tried some Belgians and Duvel brought me nearly to tears. It is in my opinion Nectar of the Gods. If I could buy this shit for a decent price, I could live the rest of my days at peace and content with the world. Any suggestions?
    Stockfan42 likes this.
  2. ImperialStoat

    ImperialStoat Savant (355) Ireland May 20, 2009

    Uhhh...Keep buying Duvel?
  3. nyyfanatic213

    nyyfanatic213 Advocate (595) New York Aug 24, 2011 Subscriber Beer Trader

    It depends on where you live, but Don de Dieu (Unibroue) is an excellent Belgian Strong Pale Ale for around $10 per 4pk
  4. draheim

    draheim Poobah (1,120) Washington Sep 18, 2010 Beer Trader

    Revise your definition of a "decent price." You get what you pay for. Cheers!
    funhog likes this.
  5. Well, it's certainly not the 'easy' way out, but it would be cost effective (eventually) to get a small, quality home-brew setup and brew a clone. Duvel is (if I remember correctly) simply Belgian Pils malt and white table sugar, with hops, and a yeast that's available commercially (from Wyeast, and maybe White Labs as well, I can't remember). The cheapest way to do this would be all-grain (though you could certainly go the easier route and do dry extract beers) and, if you brewed half-batches, you could even do this without getting a fancy propane burner and going outside. Granted, you're looking at several hundred dollars for the whole set-up (less, if brewing extract) but the beer itself would be FAR less expensive. Will it taste EXACTLY like Duvel? No. The book 'Brew Like a Monk' tells all about Duvel's fermentation/temperature control procedure and, if I remember correctly, it's pretty rigorous. Still, you could get pretty close, and for lots less than the commercial product.

    I'll probably be called out, but I've found very few to rival Duvel in it's particular style. I don't agree (though many do) that North Coast's Pranqster's a close approximation, or anywhere near as good. Unibroue's Don de Dieu would be my suggestion for you to try next (around $9.00 a 4-pk); it's somewhat similar to Duvel and deft. a bit cheaper.
    nyyfanatic213 likes this.
  6. Overlord

    Overlord Advocate (665) California Jun 28, 2007

    I suggest you get the probably cheaper and fresher La Fun Du Monde by Unibroue. It's basically a clone of Duvel. Also recommend you check out those massage chairs from Brookstone. Yeah, they're pricey. But, if you have the means, I'd highly recommend picking one up.

    What can you bench?
  7. fritts211

    fritts211 Savant (380) Tennessee Feb 19, 2011 Beer Trader

    Move to Belgium.

    Or cash out your 401k and buy in bulk.
  8. DelMontiac

    DelMontiac Advocate (745) Oklahoma Oct 22, 2010

    If you dig that Belgian Strong Pale Ale, then sift through these and knock yourself out. Some of my very favorite beers reside within this style.
  9. YogiBeer

    YogiBeer Savant (485) Illinois May 10, 2012

    Drink less (but better) beer.
  10. JimDH

    JimDH Aficionado (235) Kentucky Feb 7, 2011

    I second La Fin du Monde. Though it shares characteristics the flavor is unique and I would not call it a clone.

    Also try Brooklyn Local 1 if you can get it. It's much cheaper per ounce, though I believe it's packaged only in 750 ml bottles.
  11. Brilliant beer! One of my all time favorites!
    Brunite, nyyfanatic213 and JxExM like this.
  12. mattsander

    mattsander Savant (475) Alberta (Canada) Feb 3, 2010 Beer Trader

    While Duvel and La Fin du Monde are both pale, strong and awesome, I would never call either a clone of the other, way different flavor profile. La fin du monde has huge yeast character.
  13. gatornation

    gatornation Poobah (1,285) Minnesota Apr 18, 2007 Beer Trader

  14. highdesertdrinker

    highdesertdrinker Advocate (670) Arizona Nov 5, 2012 Beer Trader

    I love Belgian style beers and I love La Fin Du Monde! It is so sweet and strong @ 9% which is a tad higher than Duvel but hides the alcohol a little better than Duvel IMO and you can't beat the price for a world class beer.
  15. Define 'Decent price'.
  16. draheim

    draheim Poobah (1,120) Washington Sep 18, 2010 Beer Trader


    Ommegang and Duvel are owned (or at least run) by the same company (Moortgat) and, at least around here, priced pretty similarly: around $10 for a 750 of the standard lineup.

    But Ommegang doesn't even offer much in the way of BSPAs, aside from Gnomegang, which is more expensive and barrel-aged, and Duvel Rustica, which isn't as good. And neither are year-round beers, as far as I know.

    Like ImperialStoat above, I recommend that the OP just keep drinking Duvel. He's not likely to find a satisfactory replacement that's substantially cheaper.
  17. gatornation

    gatornation Poobah (1,285) Minnesota Apr 18, 2007 Beer Trader

    good god then throw in Maredsous just throwing out Ommegang brews dont need anal replies or troll
  18. Ri0

    Ri0 Poobah (1,155) Wisconsin Jul 1, 2012 Beer Trader

    I have the same dilemma. Love Duvel, but too expensive. I found Pranqster, from North Cost Brewery. Its awesome for the price. Give it a try.

    rob133, bellce0 and TongoRad like this.
  19. I love me some Duvel, easily one of my favorite beers.
  20. Pahn

    Pahn Champion (850) New York Dec 2, 2009 Beer Trader

    keep buying duvel, and just experiment with other belgians. all the trappists are good. unibroue, allagash, ommegang, russian river, lost abbey all do decent north american takes on such styles.

    in my opinion, nothing quite tops duvel though. it's the epitome of what a "complex" beer should be: so much going on, but none of it is "difficult"--just all delicious. learning to appreciate its nuances is just a matter of finding more and more flavors, rather than learning to accept them or whatever.

    (as opposed to, say, wild ales, where lots of people have to reevaluate what they perceive as good--often to great results, since there's so many excellent wild ales, but still)
  21. loafinaround

    loafinaround Savant (415) New York Jul 16, 2011

    my first preferred craft beer was val dieu triple. mighty delish! Won't save you any cash though. it probably costs a few $ more than duvel.
    funhog likes this.
  22. nyyfanatic213

    nyyfanatic213 Advocate (595) New York Aug 24, 2011 Subscriber Beer Trader

    Ommegang is one of my top 5 favorite breweries. The cost is relatively low, but the fact that Duvel owns them prevents them from consistently releasing a Strong Pale to compete with the parent product.
  23. I recently had mischief by the bruery. While not a complete clone I found the style similar with a bit more of a hops and yeast flavor. Definately full of wonderful fine bubbles and lacing like Duvel. If you can find it, definitely give it a try!
  24. bellce0

    bellce0 Savant (250) Georgia Feb 20, 2010

    Pahn and Ri0 like this.
  25. gatornation

    gatornation Poobah (1,285) Minnesota Apr 18, 2007 Beer Trader

    try this one
  26. OneBeertoRTA

    OneBeertoRTA Advocate (660) California Jan 2, 2010 Subscriber Beer Trader

    Duvel is actually a good price if you buy the VAP with the sweet Tulip. It is the same price as buying four individual shorty bottles but the tulip tags along free of charge. Duvel is great, but the reason I always have some in my fridge is because dem glasses, so purty.
  27. draheim

    draheim Poobah (1,120) Washington Sep 18, 2010 Beer Trader

    Just trying to help the OP find what he's looking for, which I think he's already found. You might want to look up "troll".
    beerFool28607 likes this.
  28. gatornation

    gatornation Poobah (1,285) Minnesota Apr 18, 2007 Beer Trader

    dont have to found you
  29. draheim

    draheim Poobah (1,120) Washington Sep 18, 2010 Beer Trader

    This is the sound of me crying myself to sleep.
  30. gatornation

    gatornation Poobah (1,285) Minnesota Apr 18, 2007 Beer Trader

    That a boy so sad:(
  31. funhog

    funhog Advocate (575) Illinois Mar 8, 2011 Beer Trader

  32. ThirstyFace

    ThirstyFace Initiate (0) New York Jan 11, 2013

    I don't taste that at all, and LFDM is a Trippel
  33. draheim

    draheim Poobah (1,120) Washington Sep 18, 2010 Beer Trader

  34. shwurr

    shwurr Disciple (55) California Nov 15, 2012

    :) Now now ....gentlemen...seriously thank you all for your varied opinions. It's why I've lurked here a lot. I'm in Cal and have tried Prankster and La fin du Monde. Liked them but somewhat offput by the odd spice flavor that seems to always dominate irritatingly. What struck me about Duvel was I could NOT separate the taste into competing flavors. Like the blend was that perfect and balanced. Reminded me of my first beer, stolen from my uncle and stashed to be savored slowly and privately. Absolutely wicked.
    BedetheVenerable likes this.
  35. papat444

    papat444 Poobah (1,640) Quebec (Canada) Dec 28, 2006 Beer Trader

    The end of the world isn't funny ;)
    beerFool28607 likes this.
  36. Ri0

    Ri0 Poobah (1,155) Wisconsin Jul 1, 2012 Beer Trader

    That's what happens when you deal with the Devil.
    Would I buy Duvel over Pranqster if price was no issue? Absolutely. Sadly price is an issue so I enjoy Pranqster.
  37. drtth

    drtth Poobah (1,205) Pennsylvania Nov 25, 2007

  38. jplopez21

    jplopez21 Advocate (660) Illinois Nov 14, 2012 Beer Trader

  39. I don't really see it much around me so can't speak for price, but if you like Duvel give Rare VOS a shot. Very tasty.
  40. jzeilinger

    jzeilinger Poobah (1,260) Pennsylvania Dec 4, 2004 Beer Trader

    That's what I was thinking, they're owned by Duvel and can be found for a little less money depending on where you live.