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Duchessic Ale | Birra Del Borgo

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Duchessic AleDuchessic Ale
BA SCORE
4.15/5
Exceptional
344 Ratings
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
Ranking:
#1,925
Reviews:
107
Ratings:
344
pDev:
8.92%
Bros Score:
0
 
 
Wants:
60
Gots:
49
Trade:
5
HISTOGRAM
 
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User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 344 |  Reviews: 107
Photo of drummermattie02
4.25/5  rDev +2.4%

Photo of BAsbill
4/5  rDev -3.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.25

Photo of cjgiant
4.12/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottle marked L83713 (I think):
Nice off yellow (tan to orange side), cloudy. A LOT of champagne-like head in pour, reduces to foamy, lace-producing white head that covers surface. Nose is very funky to me. Wood, definitely aged and perhaps rotting, a touch of sour milk tartness, Belgian yeast notes, bit if farmhouse scents as well.

Taste starts tart, with a decent amount if carbonation right up front. The tartness is pretty subdued, but lemon/lime perhaps, but really combined with a cheesy funky aspect. He carbonation plays a part in the feel throughout the taste. I can't quite decide what the tart/funk combo produces, but it seems light-tart in nature, Granny Smith apple-like. I feel a bit rambling, but it's an interesting beer.

Overall, this beer seems a bit overpriced. It's not bad, but add that it's an import, apparently (given BA rating), has Cantillon related to it, etc, and the price is jacked up, perhaps. If it weren't a special occasion, probably wouldn't have tried it. Actually glad I did, so if you have a chance, think you might enjoy it based On your preferences, and have some $$ in your pocket, give it a whirl.

 1,153 characters

Photo of drpimento
4.88/5  rDev +17.6%
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 -3.6%
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 AgentMunky
2.95/5  rDev -28.9%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 2.25 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.75

Photo of threedaggers
4/5  rDev -3.6%

Photo of mrfrancis
4.35/5  rDev +4.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A: Pours a hazy, glowing gold with a thick white head.

S: Aromas of lemon, lime, talc, must, horse blanket, and sea salt are present on the nose. The smell deftly combines the best aspects of an authentic lambic and a saison.

T: Notes of green apple, lemon, lime, talc, must, cider vinegar, oak, unripened pineapple, and sea salt batter the mouth. The finish is sharp and fruity with lemon and lime flavors undercut by a lactic yeast bite.

M: Medium in body, this ale is very dry and firm. Carbonation is sharp and crisp. Surprisingly drinkable.

O: This is a fantastic and unexpected collaboration. Try this one while you can.

 630 characters

Photo of ccrida
3/5  rDev -27.7%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Appearance is dull gold with a big-bubbled white head that leaves almost no lace.

Smell is odd. It's funky, but with a notably sweet caramel note.

Taste is also flirting with the brilliance of cantillion lambic, but laden with what seems like a lot of malt sugars. This has potential to develop if the lambic chews down the attenuation, but I'm left wanting now.

Mouthfeel is slick, medium light bodied.

Drinkability is okay, but not as good as I hoped. When I heard about this, Cantillion and saison - yes please! I had a high bias going into this, which is probably why I'm fairly disappointed. I think it can develop, but I'm not loving it now.

 653 characters

Photo of THECPJ
4.2/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Reviewed from notes 2/22/2011

A: pours a golden yellow with maybe ½ finger white head, doesn't leave much lacing

S: subtle hints of apple and a profound scent of funk- some sort of musty and/or perfumey thing going on, weird, but not off-putting

T: moderate carbonation, dry, tons of bubbles in the glass, medium body

M: sweet, funky sour, tart, almost champange-like

O: a very interesting/intruiging beer, a great collaboration between my favorite Italian brewery and Cantillon, definitely worth a try.

Cheers!
The CPJ

 526 characters

Photo of Griffith
4/5  rDev -3.6%

Photo of Brenden
4.15/5  rDev 0%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

If the appearance has anything to say for Duchessic, it makes a statement from the get-go, showing lots of depth and structure. The light yellow-tinted head sitting on this clouded dark gold brew grows to almost three fingers on the pour and retention is fantastic, as the creamy, thick and frothy pillow lays on top for awhile before becoming a heavy layer of foam. Lacing is in thick deposits before going patchy. If only it didn't fade afterward, this beer would likely have a perfect score. Floaties mix it up and then settle down, but can be swirled up along with the head as it sits.
The smell is lovely, showing the good aspects both of lambics and saisons, and it's a style combination that just seems natural. The funk is potent on the nose, horseblanket and wet hay all over the place without any rot to it; as "purely" as funk can be funky, it is. The earthy, dusty elements pull through nicely as well, with a light leafy and herbal quality and just a nip of spiciness in the back.
As can happen, something lightens and thins out a bit in the flavor. I get flashes of the funk I found in the aroma, but it comes and goes less consistently. Thus, the flavor is good but not quite on par with the smell. Most of the dustiness forms the foundational element of this beer's flavor. It does a good job of avoiding metallic qualities or the wet cardboard taste that can sometimes sneak in.
The feel offers a crisp note underneath with a moderate smoothness in a light-medium body with a carbonation that's just right.

 1,523 characters

Photo of warnerry
4/5  rDev -3.6%

Photo of Whatup14
3.84/5  rDev -7.5%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Photo of CTJman
4.25/5  rDev +2.4%

Photo of tbryan5
3.75/5  rDev -9.6%

Photo of ArtZan
4.25/5  rDev +2.4%

Photo of thegerm87
3.25/5  rDev -21.7%

Photo of tykechandler
4/5  rDev -3.6%

Photo of OWSLEY069
4.43/5  rDev +6.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Pours a hazy yellow to orange-ish color with an off white head. In the aroma, a dry sourness. In the taste, quite carbonated sour fruitiness. A sour bite and a medium to lighter bodied mouthfeel, with a small dry sour fruitiness in the aftertaste. A nice sour fruitiness, super duper!

 284 characters

Photo of DrinkSlurm
4.23/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Poured from bottle into tulip. This is one of the most unique and amazing looking brews I ever poured! It looks like there is a bunch of sediment flowing, but its actually these thick bubbles that seem to be the same weight as water...then they rush to the top; it actually puts the famous guinness "dance" to shame.
Pours an orangey rust, with a bit of thin head. Smells of fruity apple lambic. Very obvious lambic, but a bit wheaty. Taste is very smooth, refreshing, and uber crisp. A bit sour/tart but that comes with the territory. Overall, really amazing brew. Very unique and one of the most interesting style "blends" I ever had. Worth the $10 paid.

 657 characters

Photo of jfcaa193
4/5  rDev -3.6%

Photo of HaveUSeenMyCellar
3.75/5  rDev -9.6%

Photo of laituegonflable
3.99/5  rDev -3.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Pours a vibrant, burnished orange, with slight haze. Tightly-packed head, off-white, not too glamorous. Looks acceptable.

Smells kinda Belgian, with noticeable but subtle phenols. Strong cinnamon character coming through, with notes of poached apple and quince as well. Sweet; very pleasant. Could use a little more saisony funk though.

Taste is more of the same. Cinnamon apple notes, with sweetish spice throughout, and a nice cinnamon back. Fruit on the back is a bit more tart and green than it perhaps should be, quite a touch of acidity to an otherwise pleasant apple/pear palate. Still, very tasty overall.

Again, a bit of a pull from the astringency on the back. Body maybe a little too thin to handle it.

I love the idea here, and wish the execution was better. Just tastes a little undercooked; otherwise very nice.

 829 characters

Photo of tom10101
4.25/5  rDev +2.4%

Duchessic Ale from Birra Del Borgo
Beer rating: 4.15 out of 5 with 344 ratings
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