Brouwerij De Dolle Brouwers

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Strong Ale - Belgian Pale
Ranked #17
Ranked #4,097
4.09 | pDev: 10.76%
Brouwerij De Dolle Brouwers
Reviews: 343 | Ratings: 697 | Log in to view all ratings and sort
Reviews by TheLongBeachBum:
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TheLongBeachBum from California

4.42/5  rDev +8.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

What better way to tackle a pile of Laundry than with this fortifying Beer at my side, well in front of me actually. A 33cl Bottle that has a great quirky cartoon type label - just right for the "Mad Brewers".
Immense head races up the glass when poured and threatens overspill. Massive beaten egg-white rocky uneven crusty head. Superb looking straw golden colored beer, with a haze, only slight though and not detracting - it kindly reminds you to treat this offering with respect, for it is 7% ABV. Tremendous nose - pungent with the effects of dry hopping (which is quite rare in Belgique), aromatic and floral. Fascinating hoppy entrance - but no bitterness !! Mouthfeel is less than expected for the strength. The finish is an anti-climax, very fruity and short lived - but it works for me. Great hoppy, but not bitter, beer - I love this quirk. Outstandingly clean drinking terrific hoppy beer with fruitiness where so often that annoyingly sharp bitterness spoils other examples of this style of Strong Golden beer. A true craft beer that drinks well, so be careful !!!. If you ever get chance to visit the Brewery, do so, it has a Bar that opens to the Public on Saturdays and Sundays.
Great for motivating you when Ironing. Well thats One Sock done.....

Oct 08, 2002
More User Reviews:
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stakem from Pennsylvania

4.32/5  rDev +5.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.25

33cl brown bottle poured into an Oerbier oversized wine glass. The brew appears a golden orange color with a rich white cap that is 3 fingers strong. The cap slowly fades leaving spots and a webbing pattern of lace sticking all over the glass. Rising bubbles maintain a film across the surface that lasts for quite awhile. A swirl effortlessly revives a finger of yellowish stained meringue atop the brew.

The aroma of this brew is mildly sweet with an essence that is like belgian candy sugar mixed with a sort of orange marmalde. There are some earthen notes and a tingle of something suggesting a faded amount of herbal hops. A very mild alcohol ester rounds things out and makes for a very enjoyable set of aromatics.

The flavor opens with that previously described belgian candy-like sweetness. Some earthen tones blend into a mild oxidative touch of cardboard/wet paper and finish with a very light touch of herbal hops. The hops present themselves with such a mild flavor and a low amount of bitterness to assist in balancing out the upfront sweetness of the brew. The aftertaste gets progressively earthen as the experience continues with a soft warmth of alcohol becoming more evident as the brew warms up.

This is a medium bodied brew with a perfect level of moderate to lively carbonation. The liveliness of the carbonation assists in moving the flavors of this strong brew across the tongue without becoming taxing. I would love to be able to definitively state how old this brew is but of course, such a means is not precisely documented. I can hardly make out a marking on the neck of the bottle that reads 350 07 which makes me think this was a 2007 best by date. Regardless, the age is felt in this with the oxidative touch and visually the bottle is stained in the familiar pattern conducive of a beer that has been resting for quite some time. Plain and simple, I need to buy more of this and drink it instead of laying it aside for years at a time.

Feb 27, 2013
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REDAMI from Ohio

4.28/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Poured from 33cl bottle into Westvleteren goblet.

L - Blushed golden pour, massive meringue-like head of foam.

S - Floral vanilla, spice, apricot, and fresh orange or citrusy hops.

T - Gingersnap spice, yeasty funk, resinous hops, very Belgian.

F - Crisp and warm, but not overly so. The alcohol feels just right.

A Christmas Pale Ale, with the vanilla and gingersnap cookie flavors and the warming alcohol.

Apr 06, 2017
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DmanGTR from New York

4.43/5  rDev +8.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Shared at a tasting with friends.

Poured a very pretty gold with mild haze adorned with a large white head that lasted quite a while. A fairly complex nose. Honeycrisp apples, bartlett pears, touch of riesling, clove, white pepper, and apricots. Maybe some golden raisins too. There's a lot going on here. Bit of earthiness (not like the lambic kind though), it's tough to explain that one. Maybe from the hop variety they use. But the beer is superbly smooth and drinkable. Quite a fantastic beer.

May 02, 2014
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Gueuzedude from Arizona

4.33/5  rDev +5.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A hazy orange color, it is very well carbonated and it produces a thick white head. It has a spicy dry slightly funky cheese aroma. The carbonation prickles the front of my tongue, as I take a sip. A very spicy funky Belgian brew. Lightly sweet in the finish, which ultimately ends with an astringent aftertaste. Fruity with perhaps some tropical fruit notes, a certain woodiness is in this beer as well. I get notes of some wild-woody mushroom type character as well. There is no acidic sourness in this beer, unlike some of there other offerings. Very good and quite complex, it is amazing how good the beers from this small country brewery can be.

Nov 18, 2003
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amano_h from Oregon

4.51/5  rDev +10.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

Fragrant orange rinds, dried pineapples, coriander, garden herbs white pepper, and subtle hints of clove and banana adorn the aroma. Biscuits, caramel, and more spiced hops bitterness follow as the brew is given some time to warm up.

The best way to describe the initial sensation on the tongue is to compare this to biting into a piece of sliced honeyed grapefruit; whereas the first scoop of the grapefruit slice is sweet and refreshing, your face inevitably puckers after you bite into the skin. This is almost exactly what you get from Arabier, except that the bitterness is followed by a pleasant wheaty backdrop that helps you recover from the unexpected sucker punch. In simpler terms: citrus + caramel -> quinine/grapefruit rinds -> wheat.

Medium-bodied with an incredible amount of carbonation upon opening (I've yet to have one either not gush out, or take shorter than five minutes for a complete pour) which fizzles down to a pleasant, tongue tickling level of carbonation. The finish is pretty much as dry as you can get with a beer; absolutely no heat despite the ABV.

Oct 17, 2016
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nickfl from Florida

4.59/5  rDev +12.2%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A - The top comes off with a loud hiss and the beer pours with a huge, three finger head of bone white foam. The body is a slightly hazy, golden yellow color. The rocky head settles slowly and leaves nice, thick lace.

S - A somewhat musty yeast aroma on top of pilsner malt with some vanilla notes. There are also tropical fruit notes of pineapple and banana with mild, herbal hops.

T - Pils malt up front with a slight honey note that is quickly obscured by the unique musty and funky house yeast character. Yeast notes of pineapple with strong phenolic pepper and clove follow. The finish is dominated by herbal hops and spicy, smoky yeast character with some bready malt balanced by strong bitterness. Lingering flavors of pilsner malt and european hops are better able to express themselves in the aftertaste one the strong yeast character has faded away in the finish.

M - Medium-thick body, very high carbonation, and a dry finish.

D - This is a big and aggressive beer. The yeast character is wild and huge; so much so that it threatens to obscure the subtleties of the malt and hops. The aroma is quite well balanced with appropriate contributions from all of the exceptional aspects of the beer. The flavor is a bit less controlled with a huge wave of sometimes harsh phenolic yeast flavors that threaten, but don't quite succeed, to wash away the creamy malt and atmospheric hops. This beer walks the line between complexity and becoming a hot mess, but thankfully it just barely manages to land on the side of excellence. In the end, my only real complaint is that it didn't come in a 750ml bottle and that I will have a hard time finding more of it. A wonderful, and truly unique example of the style; I wish there were more like it.

Dec 02, 2009
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argock from Virginia

4.27/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from 33cL brown bottle into a Duvel tulip. No freshness or best by date. Purchased at Market Street Wineshop (Charlottesville, VA) for $4.49.

A: Dirty dishwater golden-peach with thick, frothy white 2-finger head with a think line of lacing at the top of the glass.

S: Honey is the first strong aroma with lavender and clove with plenty of floral aromas layered on a fruity pale malt background. A fresh aroma profile with a tinge of yeastiness.

T: The honeylike sweetness carries over into the flavor with plenty of herbal and floral hops contributions: honeysuckle, lavender, and clove. The malt sweetness is further bolstered by a biscuity component that increases with warming and works well with the plum and pear notes.

M: It walks the line of syrupy sweet and dry with just the right balance without being cloying or overly sharp. The carbonation is a bit much, yet another reason to let this brew sit and warm.

O: A really unique beer which is definitely worth revisiting every so often for its near-perfect feel and floral honeylike sweetness. De Dolle no doubt knows what they're doing.

Oct 31, 2011
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brbrocc from New York

4/5  rDev -2.2%

Nov 23, 2012
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SaucyA from Michigan

4.37/5  rDev +6.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A - Pours with a 2-finger white crown atop a hazy, golden/brown body. The lacing is incredible. Jets of carbonation ride the sides of my tulip. Head retention is great. It's hardly pale, though.

S - Great yeasty esters, light fruits, pears, fresh fruit. Random spices. Complex. Light alcohol notes. Awesome.

T - This is fantastic. Nice carmel candy sweetness, hints of fruits, Belgian yeastiness. Complex. Surprisingly malty, and has a super earthy hopped back end. Starts sweet and finishes dry.

M - Medium bodied with a spritzy carbonation. Again, awesome.

D - It does tend to get a little sweet but it's still a pleasure to drink.

Notes: For the price my store has it at, it's fucking amazing. Love this brew.

Jan 25, 2009
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bigred89 from Maryland

4.5/5  rDev +10%

Oct 15, 2013
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MrMcGibblets from Illinois

3.5/5  rDev -14.4%

Jul 20, 2013
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farundrpar from Colorado

3.5/5  rDev -14.4%

Jan 08, 2012
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jophish17 from Georgia

4.24/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

33cL bottle purchased at Green's Beverages, Buford Hwy, Atlanta. Poured into a Duvel tulip glass

Aroma: Lots of spices and yeast, with some fruitiness (pears). The alcohol is marginally noticeable

Appearance: Thanks to the huge amount of carbonation, this one was a gusher that I was able to salvage (for the most part) - however, it did mean I got a huge, frothy head out of the pour. Clean (re not much sediment), golden-orange body. Ok, it could be better though - I would like to see how this one pours without the quick, over-carbonated pour.

Taste: A bit of an initial sour bite with the hops coming out moreso than most of its contemporaries. More or less something I would expect to be made in America - not raw hop flavor either, but the bite came out nicely with the tart flavor. Not a whole lot of sweetness, but its there too, as are the fruits one would expect from a Belgian pale.

Feel: medium-bodied with a lot of carbonation, its nice for this warm late spring day

Drinkability: alcohol is well covered, and this one has gone down surprisingly quick. Highly drinkable beer, hoping you don't lose half of it at opening.

Ara Bier is a very good Belgian pale, and the abnormally intense hop character really provided a refreshing, fun twist to this classic style. Not the best from De Dolle, but another solid pick from their lineup.

Jun 01, 2008
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NateMac13 from Illinois

4.4/5  rDev +7.6%

Nov 05, 2014
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vande from Illinois

4.24/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Mar 07, 2015
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DBosco from Massachusetts

4.75/5  rDev +16.1%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

345ml (11.6oz) bottled May 2015 (date on cap). Pours a big fluffy tan head that takes a few minutes to settle down, dense copper orange sunset color. Nice aroma of sweet dark fruits. Taste is rich sweet with peppery spice, complex. Feel is full, creamy carbonation, with prickly feeling from the spice and ABV. Overall, this is a complex beer with a rich sweet flavor with various kinds of spicy and medicinal elements. Well worth trying. Given that my score is quite higher than the average, I expect it might be that the beer was bottled 3 years ago and has had time to smooth out. I just picked it off the shelf today and didn't notice the date on the cap until I got home.

May 18, 2018
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LostHighway from Minnesota

4.25/5  rDev +3.9%

Jan 02, 2013
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Immortale25 from North Carolina

4/5  rDev -2.2%

Apr 27, 2013
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illidurit from California

3.97/5  rDev -2.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

As with all De Dolle beers, this is a ridiculous gusher. Pours at about a 98-2 foam to beer ratio, and that's not an exaggeration. Doesn't matter how cold you chill it, it could be a half-frozen slush and still manage a huge mountain of suds. After a requisite waiting/re-pouring period, I am looking at a golden-orange liquid, completely opaque, with a dense, creamy off-white head. Aroma is big on spices, with coriander and clove leading the way. Yeast and light fruity hops as well. Flavor is lightly tart with some apricot, orange peel, and yeast. Solid hoppiness, floral with a light bitterness. Dry palate with a bit of peppery alcohol. Lively carbonation, obviously. A very nice strong golden ale.

Aug 15, 2011
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bbadger from Texas

2.75/5  rDev -32.8%

Jun 06, 2012
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Quej from Canada (ON)

3.9/5  rDev -4.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 2.5

A - A dark yellow very cloudy beer with lots of rocky head which lasts long.

S - Smells strongly of citrus, cloves and apple with a slight burn of alcohol.

T - Immediately, strong tastes of citrus and fruit with lots of spiciness and coriander. Sharp taste of spice and a very solid amount of bitterness especially towards the finish which is whip quick from the hops. Lots of complex fruits and spicy flavours with the sharpness of alcohol.

M - Light and tingly and only slightly burning from the alcohol. Very cleansing and refreshing.

D - Its drinkability is rather low, due to its high alcohol taste and complex medley of flavours which should be enjoyed thoroughly.

Jun 26, 2007
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pathman from Ohio

4/5  rDev -2.2%

Jul 07, 2013
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PittBeerGirl from Ohio

3.51/5  rDev -14.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

This was an awesome extra from Jwale73! (on my wants list)! Thanks for the opportunity to try this beer! 11.2 oz bottle poured into my chimay chalice.

A-Body is a hazy pale amber hue that pours with a huge (actually gushing) ridiculous...slightly off-white head. Head eventually fades to 1 finger but leaves a thick layer of foam all the way down the glass. Body is very cloudy-nearly opaque.

S- Nose is quite hoppy...but has more of an herbal/medicinal hoppiness to it than the floral profile typically offered for this style. A hint of alcohol and Belgian yeast can also be detected.

T-Flavor profile is very similar to the nose. Herbal/Medicinal hop flavor profile upfront with a substantial balance of sweet exotic fruit and a bready yeast backbone. The finish offers a slight medicinal refreshing twinge and a hint of the initial flavors linger on the palate after the finish.

M- Well done. Nice medium body with a bready mouthfeel. Low carbonation.

D- This is a decent BSPA. It is well put together and is definitely a unique, cool interpretation of the style...but its not really my cup of tea. It is definitely worth a try and I am glad that I had the opportunity offered by a very generous BA.

Mar 24, 2009
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StonedTrippin from Colorado

4.04/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

after having the evil sour version of this, i had to seek out the original. it had been quite some time, so it was good to get the refresher, but i have to say, it really doesnt taste anything like that sour edition. it has none of the funk obviously, but it also has none of that herbal lime leafy freshness and pungency to it. its totally different and needs to be enjoyed in its own right. this is really hoppy, even for the style. hazy and heady, it looks amazing too. pretty much the classic example of the style though, even with how unique it is, i feel like this sets the standard for all other belgian pales.lots of hop bite and bitterness, round and fluffy malt base, fresh and cerealy, without hardly any sweetness left over. the yeast is classically belgian, but it also has quit a bit more going on. mild spices like a witbier might showcase in its yeast profile. citrus peel notes for sure, and a drying capacity thats through the roof. carbonated effervescently and explosively, it has a ton of life to it, and the only thing left on the palate in the end is a little hop bitterness. insanely drinkable for how strong it is, you would never guess the strength. overall this is an absolute classic, but i have to say i was more impressed with the evil edition, which takes it to the next level.

Mar 07, 2016
Arabier from Brouwerij De Dolle Brouwers
Beer rating: 91 out of 100 with 697 ratings