Cuvee Delphine | De Struise Brouwers

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93
outstanding
657 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:
657
Reviews:
223
Avg:
4.19
pDev:
10.26%
 
 
Wants:
232
Gots:
164
For Trade:
13
User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 657 |  Reviews: 223
Photo of ZombiesAteMyDog
4.25/5  rDev +1.4%

Photo of GbVDave
4.5/5  rDev +7.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 25cl bottle into a snifter. Thanks to HeatherAnn for the assist!

Best Before: M/2014

Review # 1000!

A: Pours a viscous black with a dark mocha colored head. Retention is good, but no lace is left behind. When swirled, this has legs.

S: Strong aromas of dark fruit, tangy cherry, dark chocolate, char, bourbon, and heavily roasted malt.

T: See above. Loads of tangy fruit, burnt barrel, bourbon, tobacco, and blackened malt.

M: When first poured, it seemed pretty thin, but quickly got thick and smooth and pretty dry. Tangy astringent finish.

D: I was astonished that this is packing 13%! Virtually no trace of alcohol to be found. How did they hide it so well? Awesome!

 691 characters

Photo of safaricook
4.5/5  rDev +7.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Beautiful RIS. Deep, oily and boozy. Bourbon is there but does not dominate. Great sipper. Do not rush!

103 characters

Photo of Jspriest
5/5  rDev +19.3%

Photo of thewimperoo
3.75/5  rDev -10.5%

Photo of kiki3drt292
4/5  rDev -4.5%

Photo of desint
4.1/5  rDev -2.1%
look: 3.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Photo of jsanford
3.39/5  rDev -19.1%
look: 5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3

2009 Vintage

A - Pours a dark, inky black with a creamy, dense mocha-colored head that settles to a thick cap, leaving sheets of lacing clinging to the glass. Just as beautiful as Black Albert, one of my all-time favorites.
S - Deep, intense aromas of dark chocolate, dried fruits (raisins and prunes), vanilla, blackberry preserves, and a muted barrel character. Sad to see how lacking in intensity this is, it basically smells like *just* Black Albert (which usually wouldn't be a bad thing).
T - Flavor follows the nose, lots of dark roasted malt, bitter chocolate, smoke, dark berries, and molasses with just the slightest hint of Bourbon.
M - Big and creamy, with a full mouthfeel, low carbonation, and no sign of the 13% ABV.
O - Man, this is disappointing. OK, it's good for a "regular" RIS, but this is Barrel-Aged Black Albert! I expected something great, and this is nothing special. I'll save a few bucks and stick with the regular version next time.

 963 characters

Photo of thebigredone
3.75/5  rDev -10.5%

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

Sure glad to have gotten my hands on this rare bottle. Poured from .33cl bottle into snifter glass. Pours opaque black like all the other Black Damnation / Black Albert beers along with a healthy medium brown head that lasts well throughout. Smells of liquorice, oak, roasted barley and coffee. Dry sweet earthy chocolate taste with interesting alcoholic notes. Medium and soft smooth mouthfeel. There is a herbal earthy chocolate aftertaste with some vanilla notes. Nice oily palate, but compared to the original, Black Albert, this is a bit thinner. This was a bit of a let down, but overall a decent beer!

 608 characters

Photo of jwat
3.75/5  rDev -10.5%

Photo of hoppymcgee
4.1/5  rDev -2.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Thanks to jrallen34 for this gem! Poured from a 25cl bottled marked Best Before March 2014 into a small snifter.

A: No light is gettin' through this baby - remember this is a "Royal" stout and is highly protected, especially by the foamy head that forms when this beer is poured.

S: Boozy in the nose with some cocoa powder and dark fruits.

T: Dark fruits and brown sugar are followed quickly by roasted coffee. Unfortunately the coffee takes over a bit too much and the bitterness blocks out any chocolate flavors one might expect. I also don't get much bourbon in this.

M: Well carbonated and a little viscous.

D: The best feature of this beer. I would have no clue this was 13% if it weren't stamped on the label.

Overall, a pretty cool beer to try. I haven't had a Belgian-style RIS before. I personally think this one could age a little longer - that way the carbonation will die down a little bit and the coffee flavor will fade out making way to the chocolate and oak flavors from the bourbon barrels.

 1,014 characters

Photo of ScottP
4.37/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Photo of DRBiser
4/5  rDev -4.5%

Photo of MickeyHops
4.13/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Photo of Overlord
2.79/5  rDev -33.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Thanks to JERZ!

Pours black. Surprisingly robust inch and a half of light brown foam.

Smells like ... uhhh.... sour fruit? Really? Some vinous/grapeskin notes. Not expected.

Tastes like some vinous souriness, a bit of pungent, stale chocolate and crackers, and an interesting tobacco-y aftertaste.

So ... what's up with Cuvee Delphine? Thicker than I thought it would not be, but not RIS thick.

 398 characters

Photo of grub
4.22/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

got this one in a recent trade with freud. thanks fred!

330ml bottle. 2009 vintage. sampled feb 2/2011.

pours deep dark brown, opaque and nearly black, with a small dense cap of fine brown head. the head drops slowly and leaves plenty of lace as it falls.

aroma is great. light alcohol. bittersweet and dark chocolate. bit of milk chocolate. espresso and dark roast coffee. light alcohol. dark fruit - date, fig, raisin, bit of plum. earthy and woody. caramel and toffee. anise.

taste is great. bittersweet and dark chocolate. espresso and dark roast coffee. warming alcohol. dark toasted whole wheat bread. cracker and biscuit. anise. earthy and woody. dark fruit - raisin and date mostly, with other shades coming in. caramel and toffee. light vanilla. tons of flavour.

mouthfeel is good. nice big body. slightly above medium carbonation level. just a touch of roasty astringency.

drinkability is nice. alcohol is a touch warm and there's a little roasty astringency, both of which should mellow with time. tons of depth and complexity. i'll have to keep my eye out for another so i can stash it in the cellar for a while...

 1,132 characters

Photo of Prost76
4.08/5  rDev -2.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of nickd717
3.98/5  rDev -5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Bottle via trade thanks to PALMEJ1. Another bottle shared by alfrantzell, since these things are damn small and we wanted to have enough to go around.

Pours black with a medium-sized, well-retained tan head. Looks excellent.

Aroma is mildly vinous and tart, surprisingly. Also roast and wood.

Flavor is roasted malt, coffee, chocolate, red wine, oak, and brett. Probably not infected, but definitely tart. Just a little bit of bourbon.

Medium body with mild acidity (but smooth otherwise) with fairly high carbonation, which is a little strange for the style. A little boozy as well.

Solid drinkability. This beer is very good overall, but fell a bit short of expectations, sort of like Black Damnation.

 708 characters

Photo of CwrwAmByth
4.25/5  rDev +1.4%

Photo of kidzord
3.83/5  rDev -8.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Photo of apasternak
4.5/5  rDev +7.4%

Photo of Mersh
4.04/5  rDev -3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of Faxmesomehalibut
4.37/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Photo of FreshHawk
4.93/5  rDev +17.7%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

A - Very dark mahogany with a huge, thick, creamy, frothy, cafe colored head. I've used the the description of meringue-like, but this one is closest to meringue that I've had, it is really thick. Amazing retention that finally settles into a nice creamy lace.

S - Smell is amazing. Barrel definitely imparted a good amount of aroma with vanilla, bourbon, and oak being strong. Also a good amount of chocolate, caramel, brown sugar, and dark malt. Some sweet candi sugar balances out the roasted aroma. Hingts of dark fruit also come out.

T - Dark fruit and anise mix with the chocolate, candi sugar and slightly roasted dark malt. Raisin, fig, date, and plum come in and out along with the chocolate malt. The bourbon, vanilla, and oak also mix in and out throughout the sip, especially on the finish.

M - Full to medium body with a good level of carbonation. Very smooth and creamy.

D - Very drinkable beer with a great mouthfeel that is creamy and smooth. Also a good mix of the bourbon, roasted chocolate stout, and dark fruit. Very easy and enjoyable to drink.

Notes: Best before Mar. 2014. Excellent beer that is a great mix of all the flavors I mentioned before. I wish I had more, and that this came in a bigger bottle. Highly recommend this beer. De Struise just keeps surprising me with how many good beers they make, and this one is right at the top for me.

 1,374 characters

Cuvee Delphine from De Struise Brouwers
4.19 out of 5 based on 657 ratings.
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