Cuvee Delphine | De Struise Brouwers

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93
outstanding
654 Ratings
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Cuvee DelphineCuvee Delphine
BEER INFO

Brewed by:
De Struise Brouwers
Belgium
struise.com

Style: Russian Imperial Stout

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 11.00%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
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.

Added by ClockworkOrange on 01-07-2009

BEER STATS
Ratings:
654
Reviews:
223
Avg:
4.19
pDev:
10.26%
 
 
Wants:
232
Gots:
164
For Trade:
13
User Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters
Ratings: 654 |  Reviews: 223
Photo of Antyk
4.36/5  rDev +4.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Photo of alcstradamus
4.36/5  rDev +4.1%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

So excited about this one, how could it live up to my expectations? We'll see....

A--Pitch black with massive, fluffy brown head in my 16 oz. Dogfish Head Signature glass. Nice lacing.

S--Some wheat-like notes...clove, lemon zest. Very slight hint of liquor, dark fruit

T--Ummm...tastes pretty much like wood aged Black Albert. No suprises here...they brewed it, you got it. Take a random sampling of Black Albert reviews and add the word "oak" and presto, a Cuvee Delphine review. And much like Black Albert, this one needs to be close to room temperature to truly be appreciated. Seriously, don't drink it cold...cellar temp might even be too cold for this beer. Let it sit. Resist temptation.

M--Full bodied, just how it should be

D--Nice to have a glass of this rare treat, I will bring it out my remaining bottles on special occasions. Drinks almost identical to Black Albert, so if you like that beer then seek this one out. However, if you don't like it, then leave this one alone because it is very similar.

 1,020 characters

Photo of gueuzer
4.36/5  rDev +4.1%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

Poured from an 11.2 oz bottle into a tulip glass. 2009 vintage.

App- Black, with a dark brown roasted two finger head that quickly dissipated. lacing that clung to the glass.

A- Tart cherries, roasted malt, oak.

Ta- Lots of charred oak. The bourbon was barely detectable. Tart cherries hit the front of your palate and provide a great contrast to the dark chocolate, caramel flavors that follow. Amazing.

MF- Thick, but not too syrupy. Nice subtle carbonation.

Dr- Split a bottle with the wife and seemed like a good amount. I would say the limitation is due to the massive body though, as opposed to the 13% ABV, which is hardly present.

Cracked this open on the first snowfall of the year. Could not think of a better beer to do this with. I thoroughly enjoy black albert, but I would take this instead any day. Also, there were no sign of infection as some people have thought. I would guess they are misinterpreting the fruitiness of the yeast.

 955 characters

Photo of Parrotbeak
4.36/5  rDev +4.1%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Black with a quarter-inch, creamy brown head that remains. Very nice.
Smell is slightly subdued bourbon, chocolate, a little bit of coffee. There is a slight, sour smell one would typically notice with a belgian sour. Some alcohol as well. Not exactly what I expected.
Taste is bourbon and oak up front, with some roasty malts and dark chocolate. Again, there is a belgian ale quality to this one that comes from a faint sourness. Perhaps the most appealing aspect of this one comes from the ashy smoke that hits the back on the mouth on the finish.
Mouthfeel is crisper and lighter than I was expecting. Moderate level of carbonation and a fairly smooth finish. Nice warmth from the alcohol.
Quite drinkable, as the bourbon is not overpowering, and the alcohol is very well-hidden. Wish the bottle was bigger.
Definitely a Belgian style stout, and definitely the best one I've had to date.

 890 characters

Photo of lunarbrew
4.36/5  rDev +4.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Photo of ggaughan
4.35/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Samples tasted during the Pre-ZBF festival at Alvinne. Beer poured a deep, dark black colored body with a thick tan head. The nose had strong notes of roasted malt, coffee, cocoa. Taste provides some further wood character along with nice coffee and cocoa notes and there is a bit of sweetness as well. The higher abv is present but not overly boozy. Full body and full of taste. Worth seeking out.

 398 characters

Photo of mikey711
4.35/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Dark black, but not syrupy with a very big fluffy mocha head, that lingers a little. Outstaning lace

S: Some belgian esters, bits of roastiness, nice tannin wood notes. Nice bourobon aromas. Also a bit of a vinous, wine quality to it.

T: The roast is much more pronounced in the taste. Burnt coffee, bitter chocolate, wood, and a mellow warming bourbon note in the finish. The flavors blend very well together. The bourbon adds a but of a smokey quality to it as well. SOme dark fruit notes, and hints of pepper as well.

M: Very creamy and no heat on it at all. The body is a little thin.

D: Probably the easiest and most deceptive 13% beer I have ever enjoy.

 667 characters

Photo of beerdrifter
4.35/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Picked this up at the beer store at the De Molen Brewery. Deep black pour with two fingers of tan head with decent retention and nice lacing. The barrel aging definitely comes through in the nose, with a really woody, almost vinous character, along with hints of dark chocolate, vanilla, maple syrup and tobacco. The taste is much the same, but even better! Don't think I've ever had a beer that has retained so much from the barrel aging. Tons of wood with really nice chocolate notes, and a subtle hint of bourbon and vanilla. As it warms, it really opens up. Very little carbonation, but smooth as silk with absolutely no evidence that this is a 13% ABV beer. I could have easily drank another. What an incredible beer! Going on a beer run in Belgium this weekend, and hope I can find some more!

 798 characters

Photo of klikger
4.35/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

12 oz bottle dated 2009 served in a Duvel tulip - thanks again, cmswoboda!

A - Black, modest white head, great lacing

S - Roasted malt, coffee, cinnamon

T - Molasses, licorice, and coffee dominate the up-front and linger. The back half and finish consist of espresso beans and dark chocolate. Tons of good flavor without being overbearingly sweet.

M - Ultra-smooth & creamy; thick without being syrupy

D - Where's the heat? For 13% and the style, this is impressively drinkable.

 483 characters

Photo of John_M
4.35/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Graciously shared. by Dyan last night.

The beer pours a very dark brown color with good head retention and considerable lacing. The nose is likewise attractive, showing chocolate, light sour cherry and milk duds. As good as this beer smells, it tastes even better. There is considerable cherry, dark chocolate, milk chocolate, licorice and vanilla. This is just a delicious beer. Mouthfeel is light to medium bodied, with a soft and creamy presence on the palate. Given the 13% abv. in this beer, I'm just amazed by this beer's drinkability. It's not at all hot or heavy, and there's no way I would ever have guessed the alcohol was this high.

Excellent stuff..

 663 characters

Photo of brureview
4.35/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Poured an opaque coffee dark brown in a MOA snifter with a 2F head.
The beer looks as if it will be heavy and thick. Nice lacing.

Aroma: deep chocolate, cocoa, vanilla.

As in the aroma, there is depth in the taste: deep chocolate, cocoa, vanilla, and a surprising flavor- cherry. Very rich cherry.

The body of the beer is thick, heavy, and very malty. A strong alcoholic finish.

A fantastic beer. The taste profile and its viscosity combine for a deep, rich taste.

 470 characters

Photo of billshmeinke
4.35/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured into an Affligem goblet. 2009. HUGE thanks to Rudylaw

A: Impenetrable black one finger light beige head. Dies down to a slim layer of foam on top which is quite impressive for a barrel aged beer poured into a goblet.

S: Smells of powdery cocoa, dark chocolate, some tart dark fruits. Sherry and pecan pie. It basically smells the same as Black Albert.

T: Taste is again similar to Black Albert. Maybe a touch more sweetness in the form of maple syrup, a hint of spicy oak, and peat is the only real difference. Bourbon Barrels don't rub off much.

M: Mouthfeel is belgian like for a RIS. Well carbonated fairly heavy body. Thick and complex.

D: A really interesting sipper, but only adds a few more layers of complexity to regular black albert. In fact, I rated them the same because they seemed so similar to me.

 825 characters

Photo of daryk77
4.35/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Photo of tbryan5
4.34/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Photo of JamesStreet
4.34/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Photo of gatornation
4.34/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

330 ml bottled on 04/20/14. Pour a thick black/brown color with a chocolate mocha head. smells of coffee and malt with molasses vanilla wood and bourbon. coffee and roasted malts right away are complemented by 4R barrels they are present and delightful, vanilla and mocha chocolate mix in as well . A beautiful barrel presence mixed with coffee and malts mix with hops and slight fruity wine in the finish. A delight to drink.

 428 characters

Photo of macher0
4.34/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

On tap at Winos Depot in Bowling Green, KY, served in tulip glass

A – Very dark black with a dark tan head that quickly retreats to a very fine film. An opaque/viscous tan layer holds for a very long time as beer is swirled around the glass.

S – Alcohol on front but very smooth and pleasant with coco and oak.

T – Slightly bitter on front with notes of fruit, coco, mild oak and a noticeable bourbon.

M - Very thick and sticky, but relatively smooth. Minimal carbonation.

O – Enjoyed this beer very much. It was fresh off the keg and that was noticeable. The bourbon/oak was very pleasant and balanced. Would certainly recommend this beer. The creamy/silky nature, combined with a frothy long-retaining head makes this a very attractive beer, setting a standard in my opinion.

 791 characters

Photo of Hallertau
4.34/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

Photo of WillCarrera
4.34/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

On-tap at Churchkey in DC, served in a snifter.

A- Pours black with a thin mocha head, leaves spotty lacing.

S- Sweet aroma of dark chocolate, rich flavors of figs and plums. There are also some very nice sweet aromas of vanilla, bourbon and oak.

T- A powerful flavor of chocolate and coffee/espresso (lots of coffee), which melts into a sweeter center of dark fruit and molasses with accents of bourbon and vanilla and a subtle cherry flavor.

M- Medium to full body, smooth and creamy feel.

O- A delicious beer, manages to blend a lot of interesting flavors together really nicely.

 587 characters

Photo of ricke
4.33/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A: Almost black with a small pale beige head that leaves a thin lid of lacings.

S: Mellow roasted malts and chocolate blend nicely with tart fruity aromas and a somewhat funky oak character. The oak is subtle, but still very noticeable. Not a lot of bourbon though.

T: Very good. Surprisingly tart with a prominent barrel character. Roasted and sweet malts, cherry-like fruits and chocolate. A mild funky note. Not a whole lot of bourbon in the taste either, except for in the finish where it comes through as sweetish and somewhat fruity alcohol. The finish is somewhat bitter with notes of iron, wood and licorice.

M: Full bodied, quite a lot of carbonation, much more than most beers of this strength.

D: I really liked this one. The fruity tartness adds a beautiful edge to it and the barrel character has that slightly odd Belgian feel over it. To me, putting Black Albert in barrels turned out to be a great idea.

 926 characters

Photo of WanderingFool
4.33/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.25

Photo of RobinLee
4.33/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Photo of scottfrie
4.33/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Chilled 33cl bottle into Portsmouth snifter. 2009 vintage. A warm thank you to rudylaw for this extra!

A: Pours a thick pitch black with three fingers of very soft and dense looking dark mocha colored head. The head took a very long time to collapse into a thick film that left a great network of lacing down the glass.
S: Very complex notes of both sweet and bitter dark chocolate, woody oak, damp must, sherry, dark fruits, fudge brownies, and plums. I get just a hint of balsamic vinegar as well. Very interesting to say the least.
T: Big rich notes of fudge brownies, spicy bourbon, oak barrel, and light sherry. I get light notes of vanilla and sweet, lightly tart, fruits in the finish, and the aftertaste is full of deep rich chocolate and roasted nuts. That hint of balsamic vinegar is there as well, but only in flavor (this beer is far from vinegary). I was surprised how fruity this beer was.
M: Thick full body, viscous mouth with a dry finish, and super soft and creamy carbonation. The high alcohol content of this beer leaves no trace of warmth in my mouth, which I suspect has something to do with this beers age.
O: Just an all-around fruity, creamy, soft, thick, rich, complex and easy to drink imperial stout. This was a big want of mine, thanks again for filling it Anthony!

 1,299 characters

Photo of NHbeerguy
4.33/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Photo of orbitalr0x
4.32/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

25cl bottle. Pours into my glass dark as night black with a two finger head of creamy tan foam. Lots of chocolate on the nose with wood and some subtle, mellow bourbon accents. There is a quiet and unassuming balance here. Lots of tannins with a touch of caramel as well.

First sip brings smooth dark malts augmented by a big wash of chocolate flavors. Woody tannins meet with a creamy caramel accents. Smooth bourbon weaves in and brings a touch of sweetness and vanilla. The smoothness of the Four Roses barrel really shines through here. Deceptively smooth and mellow.

Mouthfeel is surprisingly on the lighter side with mellow carbonation. Akin to the Black Albert this is a tricky beer as it's powerful but not heavy like a normal bourbon aged stout. This one will creep up on you with a left hook and leave you on the mat. Happy to be able to share this bottle with autumnaldave as it packs quite a punch. Cheers to De Struise for this one.

 947 characters

Cuvee Delphine from De Struise Brouwers
4.19 out of 5 based on 654 ratings.
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