Duchessic Ale | Birra Del Borgo

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Duchessic AleDuchessic Ale
BEER INFO

Brewed by:
Birra Del Borgo
Italy
birradelborgo.it

Style: Saison / Farmhouse Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 5.90%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
A sort of "collaboration beer" with the famous Belgian brewery Brasserie Cantillon: an interesting experiment on the world of spontaneous fermentation. Our classic Duchess - Spelt beer - is was cut with a 20% of Cantillon lambic aged one year. The result is a unique beer that blends in an extraordinary way the characteristic acidity and roughness of lambic with delicate and gentle notes of the Duchess.

Added by ATPete on 11-01-2009

BEER STATS
Ratings:
341
Reviews:
107
Avg:
4.14
pDev:
8.94%
 
 
Wants:
59
Gots:
51
For Trade:
5
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User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 341 |  Reviews: 107
Photo of John_M
3.96/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

On tap at Max's. Sampled side by side with the Del Ducato saison style beer.

The Duchessic pours a slightly cloudy, honey gold color with very good head retention and considerable lacing. The nose is kind of muted, with some honey and hint of barnyard funk... could it be? Yes indeed, this beers shows some considerable sour funk to go along with the honey and clove. Considering the relatively low alcohol, I'm absolutely amazed by the amount of flavor in this beer. The beer has a nice texture, and seems pretty rich and full flavored. I feel as if I get a hint of melted butter in the finish, which is attractive. Drinkability is good, though this isn't something you'd gulp down.

Very impressive. One of the more interesting beers I've been lucky enough to try from Italy.

 779 characters

Photo of Halcyondays
3.66/5  rDev -11.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Bottle at Beachwood,

A: Pours a dark gold with a firm white head, good lace.

S: Rustic earthy Brett and pepper, but light.

T: Bitter coriander, white pepper, yeast and Brett flavours. The saison dominates with the lambic only offering a mild sour finish.

M: Dry, medium-bodied, robust, a nice feel in the mouth.

D: I was hoping the Cantillon would come out a little more, but this is nice saison, a good hybrid.

 416 characters

Photo of Latarnik
4/5  rDev -3.4%

Photo of clayrock81
4/5  rDev -3.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured a dark gold w/ minimal head that gave off minor head that died quick w/ lace. Nose and taste are the same; semi-sweet w/ a good touch of fruit like citrus and tart cherry although not so much tartness in this at all. Easy to drink w/ a crisp finish.

 256 characters

Photo of rudzud
4.03/5  rDev -2.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 4

Purchased at Julio's. Unfortunately my botle promptly overflowed as soon as I cracked it resulting in a great loss.

A - Poured into my Duvel tulip while overflowing. Pours a nice golden brown colour, like others have said much ike a light apple cider. There was a nice rocky head that slowly faded to leave a nice white blanket and average side lacing.

S - A nice mingling of the usual saison aromas (funky, citrus) and lambic ones (acid, vinegar, tartness). Pretty good.

T - The same, its a nice saison with good barnyard funk followed b some unplaceable fruit tartness. Apples perhaps? Maybe cherries, I dunno. Quite sour and tart, very tasty though.

M - Have to give it a low score considering that all the carbonation was lost when I cracked it resulting in an almost completely flat drink.

O - Overall, thoroughly enjoyed this beer. I'd love to have it again but bottles will always be nervous for me seeing how this one blew. Perhaps on tap, as this has many qualities that make this beer easy drinking and incredibly addictive.

 1,040 characters

Photo of HopHead84
4/5  rDev -3.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Received in a trade with jleblanc and consumed on 10/31/2009. The beer pours an interesting, vibrant, and hazy peach orange. I didn't let this settle more than a day before I opened it so the haze is likely my fault. The head is one finger, fizzy, and white. Retention is decent.

I was very interested in this beer when I first heard about it, and then I learned it was a one year lambic in the blend and my expectations dropped a bit. I'm immediately greeted by the signature wet leather that alerts me to Brett's presence. The citrus is prominent in the form of orange and lemon. Wheat notes are strong, and I detect subtle lactic notes as well as some yeast character. I get neither alcohol nor hops in the aroma.

The flavor opens up with a low level of lactic sourness with a little tartness, segueing into citrus wheat. The orange notes are almost tangy, and Brett is again present in a subtle form, imparting mustiness. The finish exhibits low lactic sourness with lingering citrus. The beer is light bodied with a lower level of carbonation.

This is interesting stuff that I can't help but think will improve with a bit of age. Recommended.

 1,150 characters

Photo of sweemzander
4.29/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

375mL bottle poured into a tulip.

(A)- Pours a hazy golden apricot color. Produced some solid white froth with great retention and lacing.

(S)- An insanely inviting aroma of acidic oak funk meets dry lemon peel and apple. Its very very dry, but very very awesome. Subtle Brett bits.

(T)- Again, a Brett-like funky dryness meets subtle acidity with lemon. Finishes slightly yeasty with bits of ever so slight sweet apple.

(M)- A lively carbonation level. This has a great balance of dry funky oak, acidic lemon, and a subtle yeasty sweet finish.

(O)- The lambic influence in this is obvious, but it really adds a dynamic layer of funk and acidity to the base overall. Fantastic beer. This bottle has obviously had some time on it at the time of purchase due to how faded the label appeared.

 794 characters

Photo of lacqueredmouse
4.49/5  rDev +8.5%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Bottle purchased from Beermongers in Portland, OR. Brought back to Sydney and shared with @LaitueGonflable and @tobeerornottobe.

Uncaps with a massive fizz, but fortunately no foaming. Pours a lovely bright yellow-golden colour, very cloudy, but pleasantly light-bodied. Head is a smooth, egg-white sheen across the top of the glass. Some patchy, streaking lace. Looks pretty good.

I immediately get coconut on the nose, but it has an odd greenness to it, perhaps like coconut water, or the coconut that would lace a Thai stir-fry—because under it is layers of biting acid and mild astringency, that suggest citrus pith, plantain and an almost pine or cedar wood character. Wowee. This is expressive and exciting stuff.

Taste is also extremely good. There's not the mouth-ripping acidity of a straight Cantillon lambic, but it plays along with the other characters, suggesting that it could destroy your mouth if it wanted to: it's just that right now, it's feeling generous.Instead, we get a lovely buoyancy of mild citrus along with more oaky coconut, pithy greens, a touch of white grape juice, with a faintly fruity freshness to finish with. Wow. This is exceptionally good.

Feel is clean, but very, very smooth. It creates yet another wonderful balm to the acidity.

This is a truly wonderful beer, but it's unsurprising given the two breweries who gave birth to it. Birra del Borgo are now well on-top when it comes to Italian craft beer for me, this being just another in a great line of good beers.

 1,512 characters

Photo of petermethot
3.77/5  rDev -8.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Photo of Immortale25
4.35/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Poured into a Saint Somewhere wine-style glass. No freshness date.

A- Pours a hazy medium amber color with a 1/2 inch white head that retains well before shimmying down to a thick ring around the edge of the glass and a full sheet of surface foam. Sudsy, resilient lacing. Tiny specs of sediment in the body stick to the glass.

S- Funky saison yeast aroma upfront with some fruit sweetness in the back that has a hint of vinegar. A great blend of two distinct aromas. A bit effervescent.

T- More tart than expected at first but then the yeast funk swings in to round things out and finishes sweet. Slightly Bretty with some green olive notes that linger. I like the way the lemony citrus flavors bounce off the funk and then back to the sweet fruit. Very complex and enticing of more sips. Hint of soap flavor.

M- Moderate amount of tartness with a relatively moist feel for the style. Medium carbonation and a body that's on the lighter side.

O- Wonderful blend of two styles. Absolutely worth the ten bucks spent.

 1,020 characters

Photo of bluejacket74
4.1/5  rDev -1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

12.7 ounce bottle, 07 2013 stamped on the back label (I guess that's the best by date). Served in a tulip, the beer pours a hazy gold color with a couple inch frothy white head that stays around for a long time. There's also a good amount of lacing. The aroma is nice, it smells like peppery spice, lemon peel, pears, hay, wheat and some funk. It tastes like lemon peel, wheat, peppery spice, slightly tart lemons, apricots, white grapes and funk. Mouthfeel/body is light/medium, with high (a little bit too high for me) but soft carbonation. I think this is a good saison/lambic blend. It's pricey at $9.99 a bottle but I'd buy this brew again, I liked it.

 657 characters

Photo of Axnjxn
4.24/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Photo of stereosforgeeks
4.5/5  rDev +8.7%

Photo of iL0VEbeer
4.25/5  rDev +2.7%

Photo of ADTaber
4.25/5  rDev +2.7%

Photo of CheapBeerBuzz
4.25/5  rDev +2.7%

Photo of DefenCorps
4.08/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

jleblanc was such a vociferous pimp of this beer that I had to grab a bottle.

Quite brilliantly clear, this beer is a gorgeous golden color with a dense white head with excellent retention and lacing. A steady stream of carbonation is visible.

The nose is quite saison-like with a rustic, barnyard aroma with a spicy character along with some honey and a mild floral character. I definitely do not get the gobs of horseblanket that some people allude to, this is still very saison-like, to the point that I wish I'd held onto it a longer. However, there is a definite Brett character to the nose, refreshingly so, mildly clove-like with some earthiness.

The palate opens with a delicious blend of dry, saison flavors and a wonderful Bretty character. Rustic and barnyardy with drying hay, spicy phenols, the pronounced Brett character does work well with base saison. The mid-palate is quite funky alongside which there's a combination of honey and a hibiscus-like floral character. Drying out on the finish with a earthy spiciness, this is quite delicious. Light in body with a moderately high level of carbonation, this is quite the treat on the palate. Thoroughly drinkable, I'll keep an eye out for this. My only complaint is the moderate bait-and-switch that this beer is. I've had many a Cantillon beer and this has nothing I really associate with one, this almost tastes like a good saison that's finished with an all-Brett beer.

 1,441 characters

Photo of rjp217
4.17/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Photo of markgugs
4.12/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Photo of drummermattie02
4.25/5  rDev +2.7%

Photo of Dactrius
4.25/5  rDev +2.7%

Photo of drpimento
4.88/5  rDev +17.9%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Exceptional beer! Poured at a good temperature with an enormous, fluffy, frothy, foamy, off-white, billowy head that very slowly settled and loads of sticky lace. Color is a very slightly hazy amber with many bubble trails. Aroma is yeast, citrus and pears, malt, crackers. Flavors very close to nose, ever so slightly sweet, great bitter and carbonic tang balance. Body and carbonation are perfect. Finish is like flavor with a neat slight sweetness up front and astringency in back, fairly long, and drinkable for a tart brew.

 528 characters

Photo of claspada
4/5  rDev -3.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottle date 07 2013 which I assume is the best by date?

Pours a hazy translucent bright golden color with a super large tight bubbly white head with good retention and some soapy lacing.

Aromas begin with dry, musty earthy pilsner malt. Then I get some hay, straw and lesser wheat maltiness as it warms a little more. Some raw stone fruit flesh and granny smith apple emerges more as it warms.

The tastes begin with the same stone fruits and green apple, mixed with straw, hay, floral and grassy mild funkiness. As it warms I get some of the Saison yeasty spice, with a drying bit of funky yeast notes. Slight bit of honey sweetness emerges as it warms.

Mouthfeel is light bodied with high amounts of palate cleaning carbonation. High carbonation and Belgian Saison/Brett yeast lends to a dry finish.

Overall this was an interesting hybrid Belgian style which I thoroughly enjoyed on this warm evening. None of the flavors are too overpowering and work well with each other in a nice harmonious balance of spicy Saison and funky lambic.

 1,042 characters

Photo of threedaggers
4/5  rDev -3.4%

Photo of shigg85
4.5/5  rDev +8.7%

Duchessic Ale from Birra Del Borgo
4.14 out of 5 based on 341 ratings.
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