Cuvée Delphine
De Struise Brouwers

Cuvée DelphineCuvée Delphine
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De Struise Brouwers
Stout - Russian Imperial
Ranked #151
Ranked #2,191
4.24 | pDev: 9.91%
Feb 24, 2022
Jan 07, 2009
Cuvée DelphineCuvée Delphine
Notes: This beer takes its name from Delphine Boël, the unlawful daughter of King Albert II. She has struggled for acknowledgment in both her professional and private lives, so we decided she deserves a tribute fit for a princess. Cuvée Delphine is our Black Albert, carefully matured on Four Roses bourbon barrels for 12 months. Mrs. Boël has kindly allowed us to use her artwork for its label, which speaks for itself.

In a sea of sickly sweet and heavy bourbon aged stouts, we wanted Cuvée Delphine to shine brightly as a pinnacle of balance and restraint. Only with a base beer as potent as Black Albert could we manage to make the aging process shine. Notes of oak and slight vanilla pair extraordinarily well with the familiar coffee and brown sugar notes from the Black Albert. The subdued alcohol ties it all together in a lush, mellow experience. Cuvée Delphine will set you free.
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3.44 by TMoney2591 from Illinois on Feb 24, 2022
Photo of Snowcrash000
3.84/5  rDev -9.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4
by Snowcrash000 from Germany

Pours a pitch-black coloration with a small, creamy head. Smells of slightly roasted, caramel malt, chocolate and hints of dark fruit and estery spice, with notes of raisin, plum and allspice. Taste follows the nose, with a good balance of slightly roasted, caramel malt chocolate, brown sugar, dark fruit and estery spice, with notes of raisin, plum and allspice, as well as hints of tobacco, licorice and vanilla. Finishes bittersweet, with a medium sweetness and some chocolate, dark fruit and licorice lingering in the aftertaste. Full mouthfeel with a rich body and light/medium carbonation.

I get that there's a lot of variance going on with different vintages and age of a beer like this, but it really came as a pretty big disappointment to me as it just feels like a slightly more sweet and boozy version of the base beer with very little barrel-character coming through here except perhaps for just a hint of vanilla, while also kinda lacking that roasted and bitter character that I expect from Black Albert, reinforcing to me once more that this a beer that should be consumed fresh rather than aged, with that brown/candi, sugar note being a bit much for me here especially. Overall, this makes for a nice and rich "Royal Belgian Stout" with a good overall balance and its own unique twist, but falls short for me when it comes to barrel character and the expectations I had of this brew. (Vintage 2019)

Feb 13, 2022
Photo of Sigmund
4.4/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5
by Sigmund from Norway

2011: 330 ml bottle, a gift from OleR. Wow - I really owe that man a few beers now! Vintage 2009. ABV is 13%. Pitch black colour, huge chocolate brown head. Lovely complex aroma of roasted malts, leather, oak, bourbon, vanilla and dark chocolate. Rich mouthfeel. The flavour is roasty with notes of strong coffee and dark bitter chocolate, but also notes of oak and bourbon, hints of liquorice. A distinct hoppy and roasty bitterness in the finish. Impressive stuff!

Jan 28, 2022
Photo of mynie
4.56/5  rDev +7.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5
by mynie from Maryland

Black Albert aged all fancy like, served up in a purty bottle I imported directly from Belgium.

The pour is deep black, very flat and fizz-less.

The aroma is nowhere near as intense as I was expecting from a 13% ABV, barrel-aged stout, but this subtly allows for more depth and contemplation. You get the expected nodes of coffee and alcoholic vanilla, only here they've been expertly smoothed out, allowing deeper complexities of aged fruit and sweet brown sugar to shine through. Complex without being overwhelming. Very nicely crafted.

The flavor is likewise deep and delicate, but it doesn't come together *quite* as well. Dark chocolate and coffee up front; brown sugar, vanilla, and milk chocolate in the middle; and then a wonderfully ashen back end of charred barley, pepper yeast, and European hops.

Feb 04, 2021
4.3 by 911CROFT from England on Dec 27, 2020
3.62 by stephenlee93 from England on Sep 29, 2019
Photo of draheim
4.44/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5
by draheim from Washington

330mL (2012) into a tulip. Pours an inky black w/ a reddish brown head that settles to a wispy layer of foam.

Aroma is bitter roasted malt, dark chocolate, toasted coconut, vanilla. Rich and complex.

Taste follows nose. Great blend of bitter chocolatey roasted malt and smoky dry sweetness.

Mouthfeel is balanced with a dry finish. Classic Russian imperial stout mouthfeel.

Overall an outstanding, straightforward imperial stout. Looking at the label more closely I see that this is barrel-aged Black Albert (one of my favorite stouts). Explains why I like this so much.

May 17, 2019
3.97 by Goofster from Sweden on Mar 10, 2019
4.7 by marchoftheclouds from Illinois on Nov 22, 2018
4.48 by Thorfinn960 from Ohio on Nov 14, 2018
4.42 by Duncian from Pennsylvania on Oct 09, 2018
Photo of REVZEB
4.1/5  rDev -3.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4
by REVZEB from Illinois

A lot like the original base beer: black albert in how the flavors capture the basic RIS staples like dark chocolate, coffee, roasted malt, etc. But then there are some dark fruit in it was well, plus now add the delicate barrel bringing some enhanced booze, wood and brown sugar to the flavors. Body is on the lighter side, but not to a detriment.

Sep 29, 2018
Photo of lmaduells
4.94/5  rDev +16.5%
look: 5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5
by lmaduells from Spain

When you talk about De Struisse beers, there are more words. It is one of the best brewery factories, at least in Europe. I am a fan of Pannepot for years. This beer, by style, had not yet tasted it. Since it is very old, it is 2013, the beer is not explosive and is very balanced. A fantastic beer.

Sep 24, 2018
4 by BdM from Netherlands on Sep 14, 2018
Photo of JamFuel
4.45/5  rDev +5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5
by JamFuel from Sweden

Pours thick and jet black, with a little bit of chocolate colored foam.

Smell is rich and roasted, with a lot of coffee and dark chocolate up front and hints of leather and red currants in the back.

Taste is intense right off the bat. Huge punches of coffee and chocolate coalesce with notes of smoked pork, red berries and some oaky vanilla. Just a hint of booze, and a nice bitterness on the end.

Mouthfeel is thick, oily and smooth. Well carbonated.

Overall, a fantastic stout without the sweetness of many others.

Sep 11, 2018
4.25 by paulish from New York on Jul 19, 2018
4 by Nichols33 from Massachusetts on Jul 05, 2018
Photo of captaincoffee
4.11/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75
by captaincoffee from Virginia

Uber dark, near black with a dense little head that I thought would last but didn't. Nose is sticky toffee pudding, malt syrup, and some vanilla. Taste is chewy as expected, with some booze still lingering along with medium sweetness. Notes are similar to the nose, and really seems like a quad and not a RIS. What's surprising is the lack of any barrel notes. It was much more like a really good quad than a barrel aged stout. Not sure exactly what to think of this one since I enjoyed it but it was missing something it should have had.

Jun 21, 2018
4.24 by JOBEERFB from Belgium on May 29, 2018
Photo of josanguapo
4.25/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25
by josanguapo from Spain

From Labirratorium. In Teku glass. It has some metallic and alcoholic notes,with bit of soap that keep it from being outstanding but the more you have of it the more you enjoy

May 25, 2018
4.48 by mishi_d from Romania on Apr 25, 2018
4.31 by jvillefan from California on Apr 01, 2018
5 by igl from Russian Federation on Mar 07, 2018
4.27 by The_BeerBaron from California on Feb 28, 2018
Photo of stevoj
4.01/5  rDev -5.4%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4
by stevoj from Idaho

Taster at APEX. Dark, inky black, no head. Dark roast aroma with some mild tart undertones. A bit sweeter than the norm for the style, but covers that with some solid Belgian notes. Wine like, juicy.

Feb 26, 2018
4.5 by Tigerbrau from Louisiana on Feb 14, 2018
4.07 by beaulabauve from Louisiana on Feb 09, 2018
Photo of emincems
4.38/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5
by emincems from Turkey

It pours dark brown color with medium sized tan head. Long lasting foam leaves some laces. Smell is slightly boozy. Coffee, roasted malts and raisin are on the nose. Very complex taste; there are toffee, wood, coffee, chocolate and plum. Finishes fairly dry and quite warming. Coffee-like aftertaste. Dangerously hidden Abv! Perfect example for its style. Flawless brew.

Feb 01, 2018
4.49 by stephenlee from England on Dec 31, 2017
4.12 by Afeo from Colorado on Dec 19, 2017
Photo of zonker17
4.45/5  rDev +5%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5
by zonker17 from Texas

Vintage 2012 330mL bottle poured 12/4/17 to tulip, black, viscous, big brown head, no lacing. Nose a bit flat, some wood. Taste is not flat. Bourbon, coffee, chocolate, vanilla meld on a big body roasty malt base. Some booziness and a slightly bitter finish.

Dec 04, 2017
Photo of Voss
4.88/5  rDev +15.1%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.75
by Voss from Italy

Oh my God... What a wonderful beer... Almost black with a surprising brown foam and intense smell of raisins and wood.
Taste begins with a strong feel of liquid dark chocolate, then leaving the place to beer goods. Sweet but not too much, no hops, wood and raisins again.
Goes very well with brie de meaux and camembert, less with gorgonzola.
An incredible brew, another masterpiece from de Struise.
A must have.

Nov 14, 2017
Photo of Beersnake1
4.6/5  rDev +8.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5
by Beersnake1 from California

2012 vintage poured from fridge temp. Pours jet black with very dark, but quickly dissipating, head. Beautiful beer. Nose is full of bourbon. Also chocolate, licorice, and caramel. Spectacular. Taste is amazing. Sweet bourbon and intense chocolate. Vanilla, marshmallow, caramel as well. No bitterness, and no alcohol heat. This is truly an amazing beer with perfect complexity and balance. Moutfeel is amazing - creamy.

Update - a 2016 bottle (750ml) consumed on 9-25-2020. Zero carbonation. Motor oil if I ever saw some. Thick smell, if that's something. Tons of black licorice, charred oak, a touch of maple, cherries, blackberries, toffee, and vanilla. The taste is fantastic. Sweet toffee, dark chocolate, vanilla, brown sugar, charred wood, black licorice, leather, bourbon, burnt toffee, and maybe a touch of port. Just fantastic. So complex and vivid. Mouthfeel is very thick and viscous.

Sep 15, 2017
3.57 by mig100 from Texas on Aug 19, 2017
Photo of Bruno74200
4.6/5  rDev +8.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5
by Bruno74200 from France

2012 vintage - L - 5 S - 4.75 T - 4.25 M - 4.5 O - 4.5
Well I'd never guessed I'd have the chance to try one of these at a reasonable price. Found a 2012 vintage (bottled in 2014) in July 2017 in the great bar «Au bon coin» in Nernier, France.

L - Perfect look for a 5 years old beer. Pitch black with a beige head. Glorious 1 finger lacing all along

S - is that a dessert or a beer? It smells like «riz au lait», rice with milk, caramel, rum soaked raisins. Vanilla, hints of oak

T - It follows the smell with a big chocolate presence. A bit boozy, but balanced. No bourbon presence. Some sweetness.

M - Thick and lucious. Graceful

O - Definitely a classy beer. Greatness in a glass

Vintage 2013 bottled in 2017
L - 4.5 S - 4.5 T - 4.75 M- 4.5 O - 4.5

Quite different from the first one I've tried. Reminds more of Black Albert on a bourbon trip.
Cocoa powder, cherry, vanilla, bourbon. The hops are very present for a 4 years old beer. The bourbon aging has a really bigger presence than in the 2012 vintage (maybe because it was aged less time in the bottle). Very nice

Jul 09, 2017
5 by wanderingpints from Ohio on Jul 06, 2017
4.1 by desint from Belgium on Jun 10, 2017
Photo of spinrsx
4.13/5  rDev -2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.25
by spinrsx from Canada (ON)

2012 Vintage. Bottle received in trade with Ian.

Jun 02, 2017
4.44 by Eziel from Ohio on May 30, 2017
4.4 by Bunuelian from Minnesota on Apr 09, 2017
Cuvée Delphine from De Struise Brouwers
Beer rating: 94 out of 100 with 693 ratings