Welcome to BeerAdvocate!

Looking to talk, rate or trade beer? Join today by creating your free account.

Dismiss Notice
Curious about recent updates to the site and app? Check the Announcements forum for updates.
Dismiss Notice
Love Belgian Beer?

Join us Sep 17 in Portland, Maine for Return of the Belgian Beer Fest, featuring hundreds of authentic Belgian beers and Belgian-inspired offerings.

Tickets + more: beeradvocate.com/belgian

De Dolle Arabier | Brouwerij De Dolle Brouwers

YOUR RATING = None |
BA SCORE
90
outstanding
317 Reviews
De Dolle ArabierDe Dolle Arabier
BEER INFO

Brewed by:
Brouwerij De Dolle Brouwers
Belgium | website

Style: Belgian Strong Pale Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 8.00%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by Todd on 10-23-2000

BEER STATS
Reviews:
317
Ratings:
631
Avg:
4.05
pDev:
15.56%
 
 
Wants:
39
Gots:
56
For Trade:
1
User Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Alström Bros
Reviews: 317 | Ratings: 631
Photo of Zimbo
3.92/5  rDev -3.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Super deep full sweet Duvelesque smell and pours a beautifully thick foamy head which goes the distance from first to last sip. Hazy deep yellow with some spice and a reasonably full body withour being at all heavy. Flavour seems to lack some definition but the body is fully supportive and plays well in the mouth.
No slouch here but doesn't deliver the goods as promised.

 374 characters

Photo of AgentMunky
4.13/5  rDev +2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Poured from a 33cL bottle into a cervoise glass. From notes. Reviewed April 2011.

A: Huge head overflows the glass, filling far more than half. Very white. The beer is mildly cloudy, straw-coloured, and bubbly.

S: Yeasty, slight spice, some citrus. Tripel-y.

T: Delicious. Thick, bready, lightly spiced, grassy, tinge of wheat? Good beer, though it still reminds me more of a tripel than a BSPA. A little on the sweet side...I'd like to try one fresher and see the the hop presence makes it more balanced.

M: Heavy on the tongue. Coaxing, coating, yummy.

O: Good, but not great? Strongly recommended regarded. Will try again.

Notes: "An arabier is a pure malt beer 8°vol/alc brewed with flower Nugget-hops from Poperinge. It has the special dry-hopping taste and aroma, so appreciated by beer lovers all over the world. It is one of the two main beers from De Dolle Brouwers throughout the year. Aging time is limited due to the fact that hop bitterness is declining with the time. Store arabier cool and dark and serve cool at 10°C. "

 1,043 characters

Photo of rfgetz
3.65/5  rDev -9.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a darker coppery amber color, huge plume of prickly white bubbles, akin to many bottle conditioned beers, retention leaves about a half centimeter of bubbled and some nice sticky lacing. Scent is quite a blend of sour over rippened fruit, day old bread and over kiln dried grain with a faint hint of earthy must. Taste moved in quite a different direction from scent - the dominant flavor is dry stale bread, but without the yeasty kick. The background has minimal notes of sour over rippened fruit and lightly toasted grain. Only a touch of honey and butter - the lack of sweetness leads to a lingering earthy quality. Medium bodied, very dry on palate, carbonation active for most of glass. The dry breadyness of the beer did not work that well with the perceived over rippened fruit notes, leaving my palate somewhat disapointed, especially after the solid nose.

 871 characters

Photo of dasenebler
4.08/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

33cl, bottled November 2010, best before November 2011. Orange polka-dot bow-tie, purchased in Belgium.

Glowing and cloudy amber-orange, with a massive head like most De Dolle beers. Great retention and thick lacing.

The aroma is hoppy and orangey, with some yeasty banana notes and a touch of alcohol.

Flavor is very, very dry and bitter. Lacks some of the typical De Dolle yeasty fruitiness, though there's an earthy yeasty character. Hops are medicinal and leafy. The mouthfeel is incredibly fluffy and soft on the palate.

Though it's a completely different beer and not quite in the same league, Arabier reminds me of Orval with its dryness and drinkability. Great stuff.

 680 characters

Photo of Thorpe429
3.06/5  rDev -24.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Bottle picked up at State Line a ways back. 2010 vintage. Served in a Bruery tulip.

Pours a clear golden color that is a bit dark for the style, though not too much. Massive white head with some good lacing on the way down. The nose carries quite a bit of bread along with a very mild yeast presence. Flavor continues like this. It's simple -- which isn't necessarily a problem with the style -- but it gets the proportions wrong. The taste is too bready without any of the light stone fruit I'd like, or really much yeast character at all. The breadiness makes it too thick and chewy, and there's not as much carbonation as I'd like. With that said, it's still a well-made beer that I wouldn't complain about drinking again.

 726 characters

Photo of ChainGangGuy
3.65/5  rDev -9.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

0.33L bottle - $5.99 at Total Wine & More in Kennesaw, Georgia.

Appearance: Features a hazed, dim golden body with a very tall, quickly growing white head, despite a careful, calm pour.

Smell: A predominately fruity nose, tropical in nature, and with some bright, fresh florals given tones of spice and sugar and, though lightly, a couple lemon-menthol cough drops.

Taste: Sweetish, candyish quality in the initial taste. Some leafy qualities and a fluttering of phenols follow. A few citric elements, a thin sliver of pineapple, and another dose of table sugar arrive midway, as does some alcoholic warmth and a noted touch of tongue-numbing menthol. Hits being spicy (clove and mace) and dries out very, very fast in time for the heavily carbonated, help-I'm-filling-up-with-gas finish.

Mouthfeel: Medium-thin body. Exceptionally carbonated, pained, gassy burps are sure to follow.

Overall: Okay. It's interesting enough with its complexities for a dose and a bit champagne-like in texture, filling me up with gas, so I can skip lunch -- no, sir, there will be no need of Panda Express today.

 1,099 characters

Photo of Cyberkedi
4.21/5  rDev +4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours a nice, slightly hazy yellow-amber with a VERY thick off-white head that is quite frothy and sticks around for a while. Be careful when pouring this or you’ll get foam from hell to breakfast! Aroma is not strong, but it is pleasingly malty and fruity and a little yeasty. Fruity, malty flavor has a surprisingly hoppy and bitter undertone. Sublime texture is silky smooth on the outside and lively and fizzy on the inside so it slides down the pipes easily yet leaves a nice tingle behind. Love them Belgians!

 517 characters

Photo of n2185
2.65/5  rDev -34.6%
look: 2 | smell: 2 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.5

A: Pours an unattractive dijon mustard yellow/brown with 4 fingers of white head that recedes into a thin cap with a little lacing.

S: Lots of cloves and white grapes on the nose with a touch of yeast aroma. Smells like a white wine or grape juice.

T: Cloves and white grapes on the tongue as well followed by a chalky yeast flavor and an odd lingering bitterness.

M: Medium-light body with high carbonation, this beer is fairly well attenuated but has a bit too much yeast and sweetness to nail that light crispness I prefer.

O: Not a very good beer. Too much grape flavor/aroma with a chalky, bitter yeast instead of having a nice balance of malts, spices, and bready yeast.

 681 characters

Photo of mikesgroove
4.25/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Lots of fluffy white foam on a very carbonated golden yellow body. Even settling for ten minutes left behind a ton on lacing down the sides of the glass.

The aroma was light, pears, apples, hints of light lemon an citrus pops in it. Nice. Warming brings hints of the yeast and nice touches of the bready touches of. Light, well balanced flavor. Hints of citrus and pears nicely balanced against light bready notes, hints of grain and a nice well balanced feel. Very, very drinkable and just a very well rounded light belgian ale.

Overall just solid as could be.

 563 characters

Photo of crnipeter
3.71/5  rDev -8.4%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours clear golden body overlain by spectacular, rocky white head that lasts and never dies out. Aroma is lightly toasted pale malt sweetness enveloping significant fruity esters of orange (major) and pear (minor), distinctive spicy-peppery phenols, refined sugar and a whiff of alcohol. The flavor is a marriage of orangeish fruity esters and spicy phenols; the body is medium and effervescent and it is the high carbonation that, together with pronounced bitterness from both hops and phenols, lends
dry finish with lingering, resinous-bitter and somewhat spicy
aftertaste. (330 ml, bottled Nov 2010, BB Nov 2011, into tulip.)

 629 characters

Photo of tbeckett
3.85/5  rDev -4.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Bottle at Bier Circus in Brussels. From notes.

A - Poured with a big 3 finger fluffy head with some pillowy quality. Head was white. Very effervescent. Hazy dark orange colour with a little lacing and a good ice cream scoop in the middle for retention and some film around.

S - Really farmhousy. Lotsa yeast and some mild hop. Quite citrusy.

T - Yeast, barnyard funk, good citrus, hops, and a little more funk.

M - Nice carbonation, medium body, and a nice bitter, dry finish.

O/D - Nice one. Great to sip on and a nice hop/funk/yeast combo.

 546 characters

Photo of MrHassellYaHurd
4.14/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

8.00%ABV version here, poured into a Delirium Tremens tulip. Pours a just-so-slightly hazed golden yellow color with an incredibly dense and lofty head; the retention is just awesome. There is a vigorous, almost violent visible release of CO2.

The initial smells I take in are of earthy yeast residue with a sweet fruity combination of a baked banana-bread and tart green apples. I can just make out the gently spicy, and likewise earthy, hops in the nose.

I'm a little surprised at the floral and citrusy hop tastes in this beer. It's a bit more bitter than I expected, as well. The backbone of this brew is the sharp carbonic bite paired with a gently sweet malt following close behind. The yeast earthiness rounds out this great example of Belgian beers. The texture is grainy and sharp, with a bit of alcoholic dryness. Medium-bodied and easy-drinking.

 859 characters

Photo of Rifugium
3.73/5  rDev -7.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

First had: bottle at Eulogy, Philly, PA

Served in a stem glass. Poured hazy, golden-yellow with a nice white head that receded partially. Floral aroma and some fruitiness. Very organic tasting, the aroma follows through in the taste: floral, light fruits and some citrus notes, complimented afterward by light grassiness, giving a crisp finish with a bit of a bitter aftertaste. Medium mouthfeel, and nicely drinkable.

 419 characters

Photo of Ginsu13
4.3/5  rDev +6.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Happened to come across a couple bottles randomly placed in the store. How could I turn this one down, a bird rockin' a beret drinking in the trees. This one turned out to be a treasure.

A - Poured into snifter from 11.2 oz bottle. Had to be careful pouring as this one wanted to jump out of the glass. Huge rocky white head that wanted to sit tight. The color was a nice orange amber haze.

S – Not a huge nose, but hints of plum, lemon and a light grass note come through.

T – Lots of nice flavors here as the plum and lemon translate through. Slight grass and subdued clove flavors follow through on the back end. The malt & honey flavors really round out the profile. The pepper taste I was expecting from this Belgian never quite hit.

M – First sip seemed to be on the dry side with a nice carbonic bite. As I got toward the bottom of the glass, the beer became full keeping the nice dry bite on the back.

O – Glad I picked this one up. If I were to find another bottle stashed somewhere I will definitely pick it up.

 1,035 characters

Photo of maleman
4.12/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - poured from an 11.2 oz bottle into a pint glass. Freshness dating was noted on bottle. I thought I was pouring at my regular rate but the head exploded to half the glass before I could stop! Color was dark golden. Lacing was thick, but patchy.

S - rich bread and pine resin was evident right out front.

T - clove was noticeable just at first then it quickly dissolved into a resin/grassy combo. malt or hops was not really there for me. but regardless it was very smooth.

M - as stated the taste was smooth and what I'd call medium-bodied. Slightly on the acidic side which I tasted in the back roof of my mouth.

O - a very good brew that I'll have again when I come across it. not as "belgian" as I anticipated it being, but very good nonetheless.

 759 characters

Photo of drtth
4.65/5  rDev +14.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured into a snifter X glass from a bottle that has a best by date of Jan 2012 and was filled in Jan of 2010. (Special Kudos to De Dolle for giving us both dates.) Glass of cold water on the side to sip from periodically.

Appearance: As poured the beer is a faintly hazed golden color and filled with active carbonation. There is a 1” fluffy white head that recedes slowly leaving patches of lacing that cling to the sides of the glass. Sipping leaves some interesting trails of leggy lacing as well.

Smell: The aromas tell you immediately that this beer is made with Belgian yeast. There is also a touch of some pale malt and a floral, fruity character that blends nicely with hints of herbal grassiness from the hops. It is when the hops show up that you first realize this is not your ordinary Belgian Strong Pale Ale.

Taste: The flavors include sweetness, citrus and some earthy, grassy character. There’s also a bit of white pepper showing. An almost honey-like sweetness is also a player here.

Mouthfeel: The mouth feel is medium bodied and a nice combination of creamy smoothness and gently prickliness from the healthy carbonation. The finish is relatively long, begins with the some sweetness and then quickly becomes bitter and dry.

Drinkability and Overall Impression: I’m liking this beer more and more as I sip more and more. I’ll certainly be willing to drink this one again, so long as it is relatively fresh. My overall impression of this beer is that it is very balanced and well made, that it is a real treat that stands out from the field of Strong Pale Ales with its imaginative combination of the best of Belgium and the best of hops.

 1,670 characters

Photo of nickhiller
4.65/5  rDev +14.8%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A: cloudy golden brown, big bubbly head with lasting retention, thick soap scummy lacing

S: fresh, sweet malt, almost like sniffing a handful of barley, De Dolle's familiar raspberry/fruity yeast

T: tastes like raspberry jam biscuit, with a perfect counterbalancing fresh hop bitterness

M: light creamy body, dry bitter finish

O: delicious, it seems like they might be using the same yeast in their beers, giving them a signature yeasty raspberry-esque flavor that works really well with their malty-cum-sour flavor

 519 characters

Photo of Daniellobo
4.25/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Rich and funky ale.

Presentation: 33 cl brown capped bottle. Fairly colorful image with theme of the brew and the drawing of a parrot holding a glass of beer. Notes second fermentation in the bottle and main ingredients. Shows 8% Alc. by Vol. Served in a tulip glass.

A - Lightly hazy deep gold, rich and lasting frothy head, with a great surface presence and nice patches of lacing.

S - Sour, funky, and fruity nose. Earthy and very fresh.

T - Funky range, with a peppery yeasty dash, plenty of citric notes, and a nice earthy sense. The grassy elements works very well with a dash of sweet honeyed fruit in the finish.

M - Light-medium body with rich carbonation, dry finish.

O - Quite long and pleasing with a nice fresh sense, very nice flow.

Notes: The hoppy side that the brew talks about was there but woven, maybe subdued given the uncertain age of the bottle. I´d be happy to find another one and compare notes though. This was quite tasty and top bracket quality wise. Thanks Toño for the treat.

 1,016 characters

Photo of skandha
4.33/5  rDev +6.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Appearance: hazy gold with an iceberg of stiff meringue peaks that would look perfectly comfortable atop a banana cream pie.

Smell: honeyed sweetness with gentle fruit backdrop, and some subtle cardamom spice lurking in the wings.

Taste: this beer must be allowed to sit and warm. In my impatience I sipped too soon and suffered puckered displeasure at the astringent bitterness. Since my impatience also allowed the whole glass to pour into frothy snowbank, I had to wait a few minutes before it s drinkable - that was a good thing. Fruits and lemon up front, followed by an aggressive hoppy middle, and a capped with a lingering bready finish.

Mouthfeel: again, let it settle for a few or this one will make you look rabid. Once the fizz settles the carbonation returns to a bearable level well-suited to the style.

Overall: a real treat! Complex enough to be enjoyed on its own, but for all us savages who need food with beer it stood up to Chinese without batting an eye. Looking forward to having again when the weather warms up.

 1,038 characters

Photo of CHADMC3
4.35/5  rDev +7.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a hazy golden to orange with yellow hues with a pillowy cloud of pure white head that patiently dissolves to leave a dense sticky lacing in its wake.

Abundant aromas waft from the glass including Belgian yeast, sour fruits such as apples accompanied by other citrus aromas, and spices like clove.

Yeast and fruits such as apples and oranges or lemons hit the palate first followed by grassy notes and spices such as clove.

Generous carbonation highlights the mouthfeel of this beer as well as the puckering sour fruits that accompany the medium body.

This is a fantastic beer with great traditional style characteristics and an overall tasty experience.

 666 characters

Photo of axeman9182
4.18/5  rDev +3.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

11.2oz bottle, received as part of Amanti Vino's Beer of the Month program, allowed to warm slightly before being poured into my Brooklyn tulip.

Arabier pours somewhere between a hazy tangering and full on orange. The cream colored head is absolutely towering, 4 fingers plus after pouring only about half the bottle. Retention is off the charts, 15 minutes later there's still a foam iceberg marooned in the center of my glass. Lacing is pretty good, but more spotty than cohesive sheets down the side of my glass, and just keeps the look from being about perfect. The nose is heavy on herbs and clove, with a bit of granny smith apples and pears peeking through as well. Neither the bottle or the De Dolle website mention anything about brett, but I swear there's a bit of funk to this one. Beyond that, the usual pale fruit sweetness leads off (though is unusually subdued) before a bigger than usual hop bite leads into a beautiful blend of herbal notes from the Nugget hops and clove and white pepper phenols from the yeast. A little bit firmer of a malt presence would balance the beer out a bit more and really elevate it even further. I don't mind my BSPAs being a bit on the dry side, but I'd say Arabier takes it just a bit too far. There's no substance to it at all body-wise. Carbonation is quite lively, and spot on for the style. Arabier is a relatively unique, interesting take on a Belgian Strong Pale Ale, and were it not quite so dry would be up there with Duvel as a top offering for the style.

 1,514 characters

Photo of ILiveOffHops
4.23/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

33 cl, 11.2 oz bottle, no date on the cap. Foams upon opening, even after careful storing and handling. Just that highly carbonated? Pours a cloudy deep-golden color. Nice lingering head with real sticky lacing. Beautiful color and beautiful beer.

The aroma is a great combination of bright fruitiness and spicy clove and yeasty earthiness.

Flavors of fruits- pears, citrus and pineapple even?, yeasty, but still refreshing. Slightly phenolic. Hint of vanilla. Ever so slightly tart and sour. Highly carbonated. Medium body, but finishes dry. Very drinkable.

This one from De Dolle is really complex and has to be one of my favorite pale Belgian ales.

 654 characters

Photo of DovaliHops
3.83/5  rDev -5.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This bottle says it's 8%ABV, not 7. Pours a very cloudy golden color with a HUGE white, frothy head that doesn't go anywhere anytime fast. Good lookin beer. Scent is yeasty, spicy, and fruity. I get oranges, apples, and banana. The orange is actually predominant in the nose. Taste is somewhat unique in its own way...Tons of flavor...Initially I get a hoppy flavor, quickly followed by delicious banana and orange flavors. Then I get some bread notes and tons of yeast and spice...a lot of pepper and some clove. It finishes very hoppy, which I was not expecting. Mouthfeel is very crisp and dry with a lot of flavor. Drinkability is fairly high, as the ABV is pretty well-hidden. This beer is nowhere near Duvel, but it's a good beer overall.

 744 characters

Photo of alcstradamus
2.58/5  rDev -36.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 2

Pours a cloudy golden color with a moutainous marshmallow head.

The aroma is yeast and light spice with a bit of skunkiness. Notes of apple peel and citrus.

The flavor is spicy and a bit astringent. Some empty citrus flavor and alcohol.

The body is light and carbonation is high.

Overall this beer is very mediocre. Do I have a bad bottle? I just don't see the appeal at all here.

 384 characters

Photo of impending
3.18/5  rDev -21.5%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

33cl into a tulip. Pours a hazy butterscotch orange. Magnificent pure white towering head remains till nearly tomorrow. One of only a few 33cls that wouldn't fit my Duvel tulip in a single careful pour. Clumpy froth clings as only a belgian can.

Aroma is yeast by the ton atop a cornucopia of mid summer light skinned fruits. Superb!

Taste is not up to the level of the nose or eye. Taste surprisingly lacks complexity, rather one dimensional. Simply yeast and pine bitterness atop under ripe fruits with a peppery finish. Light, prickly mouthfeel.

Rarely has the scent of a brew exceeded the flavor to this extent, unfortunate. Bottled six months ago, perhaps it needs to be fresher.
cheers
jd

 697 characters

De Dolle Arabier from Brouwerij De Dolle Brouwers
90 out of 100 based on 317 ratings.
  • About Us

    Your go-to website for beer (since 1996), publishers of BeerAdvocate magazine (since 2006) and hosts of world-class beer events (since 2003). Respect Beer.
  • Return of the Belgian Beer Fest

    BeerAdvocate Brings its All-Belgian Fest to Portland, Maine on September 17, 2016. Tickets are on sale now.

    Learn More
  • Get the Mag

    Become a BeerAdvocate magazine print subscriber today.

    Subscribe