De Dolle Oerbier | Brouwerij De Dolle Brouwers

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De Dolle OerbierDe Dolle Oerbier
1,013 Ratings
De Dolle OerbierDe Dolle Oerbier

Brewed by:
Brouwerij De Dolle Brouwers

Style: Belgian Strong Dark Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 9.50%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by BeerAdvocate on 03-23-2001

Bros Score:
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Ratings: 1,013 |  Reviews: 480
Photo of sweemzander
4.14/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

11.2oz bottle poured into a snifter.

(A)- Pours a deep dark mahogany color. Some tan froth and lace.

(S)- Mildly roasted caramel. Lots of prune and raisin. Subtle bits of bubblegum.

(T)- Similar to the smell in lots of ways. Plenty of that yeasty bubblegum/banana part. Caramel malt and raisin.

(M)- A higher carbonation level, but a nice balance. Sweet, but subdued with the yeast profile. Not overly complex either, but it has it where it counts.

(D)- A solid strong dark. A good balance and smooth flavors/feel despite the ABV.

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Photo of adsomers
4.87/5  rDev +16.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

This is one of the best. If you haven't tried this, do.

For me, the aroma is the best part. Deep and layered aromas of fruits--raisin, plum, fig. The aroma also has a biscuit quality that really invites you to consume this hearty and satisfying beverage.

Given the aroma, the taste is not as over-the-top as you might expect. It's complex, but not sweet. Pairs excellently with food or on its own. It held up nicely against some very rich bacon and sweet potato fries I was having at the time.

The mouthfeel is a bit dry due to heavy carbonation. This makes the beer go down very easily but I would advise to let this beer settle a bit before finishing.

This is one of those beers I would call "digestible." It looks, smells, tastes, and feels wonderful. After finishing I am perfectly satisfied.

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Photo of Morningside
4.4/5  rDev +5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Presentation: 11.6 oz. bottle with no freshness date. Cute little round guy on the label looks off to my right, I keep wondering what he's staring at (and what he is for that matter).

Appearance: Burnt umber when held to the light, cloudy and impossible to see through. Thin latte colored head, pours about two and a half fingers thick with tiny bubbles, dissipates down to a half finger pretty quickly, but retains throughout.

Nose: Granny-smith apples are big here, as with most in the style, followed by some tart raspberries and sour cherries. Alcohol is effervecent at first, then fades a little as it warms (interesting?). Pungent earthy hops start to appear with a swirl or two of the glass.

Taste: Dark fruits, plums, raisins, figs, all to be expected. Brown sugar and toffee are pretty prominent on the back-end of the palate, as are those granny-smith apples. Alcohol is a little hot here, but not as bad as some reviewers have claimed. Tart cherries make their appearance in a big way as it comes closer to room temperature.

Mouthfeel- A pleasant amount of carbonation (much less than many young Belgian dark ales), and a warming alcoholic finish that follows down to my stomach (or maybe that's an ulcer?). Very light here.

Overall- My buddy had this in his bottle shop. He didn't know much about it, but took it in after reading the ratings. I'm glad he did. The little yellow round man wasn't going to let me leave without him. My bottle was a little young, but enjoyable nonetheless. I hear this one gets more and more tart as you age it, so I'll see what I'm in for in 6-12 months. Very, very good beer, but not quite Gouden Keizer Blauw level of awesomeness/Godliness.

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Photo of cjacobsen
3.95/5  rDev -5.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

(A) Clean, reddish brown and really no head. There is some clumping of small bubbles on the edges of the beer and the glass.

(S) Sweet, some powered sugar, and thanks to sweemzander for making the comment of gumball because that's all I smell now.

(T) Taste is of sugar, banana and toasted malt. There are some other underlying fruits in the taste but it is more of cherry and weak acids than anything.

(M) There is a lot of carbonation in this beer. Medium body.

(O) Tastes more like a quad to me.

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Photo of fsvan
3.92/5  rDev -6.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottle poured into New Belgium globe. Bottled 4/2011.

A- Dark, murky reddish copper. Tons of carbonation in this one. Took two pours to get the bottle into the glass. Good body on the head. Some lacing.

S- Spicy, earthy yeast notes give this a dry smell. Dark fruit like raisins behind that. As it warms the fruitiness begins to take center stage.

T- Sweet. Bready malts. Lots of dark fruit. A bit of peppery bite. A slightly metallic taste on the finishes holds this score down.

M- Nice, fairly thick BSDA.

O- A pretty nice beer. The slight metallic taste in the finish really holds this one down for me.

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Photo of billshmeinke
4.27/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured into a Delirium Tremens tulip.

Cloudy brown hue with two fingers of beige head. Not much lacing, good retention.

Smells of brown bread, brown sugar, estery dark fruits, a bit of alcohol.

Taste follows smell, more dark fruit esters in the nose, raisins and plumbs, brown bread, cloves and phenols, a touch of banana, some alcohol spice.

Full bodied, well carbonated, spicey, kinda creamy carbonation.

Wonderful belgian strong dark ale.

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Photo of jsled
3.94/5  rDev -6%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

P: 3/5. hazy medium brown. good amount of lightly-tan head, supported by good carbonation. recedes by about half in a few minutes, no lacing.

A: 4/5. boozy. sweet. caramel. raisin.

F: 8/10. rich. sweet. caramel. malt. slightly sour pitted fruit. some alcohol, but not strong.

M: 4/5. slightly prickly carbonation, but lighter in the mouth than the flavor would lead you to expect.

O: 8/10. very nice.

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

"Bottled May 2010" Opened over a year later.

Pours a big light tan head in the snifter that starts smooth and creamy, and then foams, forming larger and larger "swiss cheese" bubbles. Body is a translucent ruddy brown. The head then calms down to retain at a creamy, fine-grained single finger of head which stays and stays. Some slippery lace as well.

Smells interesting if a bit subtle, plenty of Belgian yeast with great fruit esters: bananas Foster, coriander, faint sweet funk.

Taste follows the nose, chewy with caramel, banana, and that faint tart yeast that signals a nice bruin. Toffee, slightly earthy finish. Quite nice.

Interesting twofold texture: both the head and body remain perceptible without really mixing. Carbonation is relatively bright for something bottle refermented.

It's a good bruin, no doubt about it. For the money, however, I'd probably stick with Gouden Carolus Classic-- they are remarkably similar. The label is kind of cute though, and it was by no means disappointing. Curious as to how this would taste minus the age.

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Photo of moosejaw7
4.95/5  rDev +18.1%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

I love this beer. It's pretty ridiculous how much I love this beer. I firmly believe that you could sip this beer for hours and still not quite pick up everything it has to offer.

The color is intriguing. The nose, alluring. The taste, amazing.

When I sip this beer, it wraps me up like a warm blanket. Everything is going to be all right. The American economy? Just take another sip. My girlfriend is pissed at me again? The chubby little yellow Oerbier dude would never be angry at me. Is someone trying to break into my house? That's fine. Just let me keep my Oerbier.

Seriously, though. There is so much going on here it's crazy. Dark candy sugar, yes, so it's sweet, but not too sweet. It's more dry than anything. There is only a slight hop bitterness, but I don't have time to dwell on that. It's all coming at me too fast. Dark fruits, sweet malt, a wonderfully subtle tartness, and, oh right, there's the booze.

This is definitely a sipper, but I don't know why you'd be in any rush to finish it.

God, I love this beer.

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Photo of schlimenhaumer
3.95/5  rDev -5.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured from a 12oz bottle into a Delirium tulip at low altitude.

A: Pours a very dark ruby color with a two-finger cream-colored head that dissipates rather quickly.

S: Sweet caramel notes accompany malts up front, with some dark fruits -- mostly cherries -- in the background.

T: A complex mix of malty flavors and some funky Belgian yeast. Finishes with the cherry notes from the nose. Almost no bitterness at all here, with a bit of booziness in the finish.

M: Medium-bodied with almost no carbonation and a dry finish.

D: The dryness and booziness unexpectedly made this one a little bit of a sipper.

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Photo of Jules11788
3.87/5  rDev -7.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A: Pours a murky dark mahogany-red color; fat two finger-width head, fades quickly; slight retention; slick head, with barely any lacing.

S: Earthy notes with some wood, spice, and Belgian yeast.

T: Starts out with a sweet light yeasty flavor; the carbonation opens the flavor up almost immediately to reveal subtle earthy flavors with notes of Belgian yeast, some tartness, and a hint of spice; finishes dry with a slightly metallic lingering yeastiness; no hint of booze at all -- where are they hiding the 9% ABV?

M: Fairly thick and chewy despite the strong carbonation that tickles the tongue nicely as it opens up the flavors. Phenomenal mouthfeel.

O: This is a great beer -- not exceptional -- but great. I would love to buy it again except that it costs $6.99 for a 33cl bottle, too much in my opinion. If you love Belgian Dubbels or Belgian Strong Dark Ales, then you'll love this.

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Photo of cavedave
4.3/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A darkest brown and opaque pour is topped by a brown head for a moment, finally a lasting skim.

Man, the tart of the yeast comes on strong in the aroma, with caramel, figs, plum and prune coming in, even a hint of chocolate, just a hint of alcohol.

Man what a taste. It starts candi and tart with the sweeter malt notes of caramel, and roast, and toffee and pastries, then the fruitiness, really plum-like in its flavor, ushers in some herbal/roasty bitter to join the yeastiness for a wonderful end. As it warms some bitter chocolate enters the taste.

Medium carb., drinks lighter than you would think, it is med/high thickness, and an excellent semi-dry finish.

Woooaaaah, each beer from De Dolle I try makes me respect and love them more. Great BSDA, get it if you spot it.

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Photo of rvdoorn
4.42/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Look: the beer pours dark brown color with a nice light-brown head.
Smell: Roasted malts, grain, dark ripe fruits (mainly raisins and plum), some sour red fruits and spicy hops.
Taste: Dark malts, caramel, dark fruits up front, followed by some sour lemon and red fruits with a spicy hoppy aftertaste.
Mouthfeel: high carbonation and a medium body
Overall: Perfectly balanced brew where everything blends perfectly together

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

Poured from a 33cl bottle into a chalice.
Note: this beer states the ABV as 9%

A - Very dark brown/crimson coloured liquid with a decent covering of caramel tinged head.

S - Dark berries and strong liqueur (port & rum). Some rich malt and old wood as well.

T - Surprisingly spicy on the tongue at first - strong carbonation coming through immediately. Sweet berry aftertaste followed up by a big coffee hit. The same dark flavours coming through as with the aroma - rum being the primary one. Definite alcoholic kick with some caramel in there as well.

M - Very vibrant at first but mellowing out as it's consumed. The dark berry aftertaste becoming more prevalent as the beer warms. Carbonation is still really strong.

O - A nice example of a dark beer but somehow lacking that killer punch. Plenty of flavours to keep you interested but the carbonation here is probably a touch too strong and masks some of the more subtle elements.

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Photo of Filosoof
3.44/5  rDev -17.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

After reading all the positive stuff about De Dolle Brouwers I was happy to find this beer.

Not specifically liking Belgian Strong Dark Ale (preferring the blonds and tripels) I hoped this one would turn me over.

From this view this Oerbier was a bit of a disappointment.

A: Great. Bronze with a big, lasting golden top.
S: caramel; I especially didn't find all the things others have described; quite bare.
T: ripe apples, medicinal, liquoricel, quite sweat, alomst no sour.
M: good carbonation, almost too much
O: I'm missing the point why this would we one of the best BSDA's.

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Photo of CelticAleMan
4.56/5  rDev +8.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

From notes:


A - Crazy head that kept building and building out of the glass. This was with a pretty gentle pour. I would have rated the appearance a little higher if the carbonation was so out of control. Once the head started to recede, there was amazing lacing all over my glass! The beer was a beautiful copper color.

S - Plum, tart cherry, green apple, funk, generalized dark fruits, floral, medicinal, spicy, etc. This beer is one of the more complex beers I have ever smelled! It takes awhile to discern specific aromas.

T - Brown sugar, plum, pear, dark fruits, spices, and maybe a little vinegar. Mildly tart and funky. Spicy, tart, and sweet finish. Nice.

M - Medium body. Slippery and soft. Very well carbonated.

O - Very enjoyable beer. Spent most of the time smelling the beer. Great beer! I had had this beer many years ago and didn't remember it being so amazing.

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Photo of jcurtis55
4.8/5  rDev +14.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Wow, is this a great beer. Now granted, this was my first exposure to Belgian beer, but it sure won’t be the last. It produced massive amounts of a tan head on the pour, even with a slow pour at a 45’ angle. Dark fruit to the nose and a rich nutty flavor that completly hides the 9% alcohol. This beer tasted great right from the refrigerator and as it warmed to cellar temperature. The alcohol warmth only came it as it neared room temperature. It did not strike me as all that tart, as many have noted. One of my favorite beers to date.

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Photo of BeerNemesis
4.29/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

De Dolle Oerbier | 330 ml. | 9.0% ABV | 2010 vintage

Brewer: Brouwerij De Dolle Brouwers
Style: Belgian Strong Dark Ale
Glass: snifter

Radiant cherry red under light and mahogony otherwise. A nice 1/2" head rest on top.

Tart apples, malty base, not much else.

Splendid progression of flavors from the tart apple, to wheaty malts, then onto brandy, figs and prunes, and a chunk of brown sugar and wads of caramel. Really delicious, and fun.

Silky and creamy, but not heavy. Nice carbonation... almost too much.

The development of flavors is perfectly timed so that something new segues in just as you were getting used to the previous taste.

Would I get it again?:

Bottled: January 2010
Served: June 29, 2011

Price = $9.99 at Whole Foods (NYC)

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Photo of seabass87
3.9/5  rDev -6.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Poured from an 11.6 fl oz bottle into tulip glass.

A- Opaque dark brown body with subtle hints of carbonation on the sides. Forms a creamy, thick head that settles down quickly but sticks around for a good while.

S- Very complex smell. I'm getting dark fruits (grapes, figs) and sour cherries up front. Undertones of licorice and some apricot. Slight vanilla extract and a bit of wood. Boozy in the back.

T- Follows the nose for the most part. Dark fruits up front. I like that it transitions smoothly into the undertones; not a strong bite at all. Aftertaste I'm getting apricot and a boozy warmth.

M- Just the right amount of carbonation here. Wet mouthfeel that sticks around on your tongue for a while. Fantastic.

O- I'm fairly new to Belgian strong dark ales, so I don't have much of a reference point. Very enjoyable beer; I will be trying more of this style in the near future.

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Photo of billab914
4.08/5  rDev -2.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

33cl bottle into my Westy chalice. Dark, murky brown in color with a thick and frothy head filling the top inch of the glass. Excellent head retention with some nice lacing as well.

The aroma shows a lot of sweeter, dark fruit like flavors with some fig, plum and brown sugar to it. The Belgian yeast gives it a good dose of spice with some notes of clove and nutmeg.

The taste has a lot of the Belgian yeast spices to it throughout the beer. It's definitely a little above average on the spices in relation to others in the style I've had. I get a good amount of crisp, tart fruity flavors to it with some apple and pear coming through. The sweet, dark fruit flavor is a little more reserved at first but really shows up for the finish.

The mouthfeel is thick and very creamy. Overall it was a pretty solid beer for the style. Lots of bold flavors to it, but they came together pretty nicely. It had some very nice range and depth to it as well. Very nice beer to sip on this evening.

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Photo of ritzkiss
3.76/5  rDev -10.3%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

33cl bottle from Premier in Buffalo, bottled Jan 2010 the cap tells me. Pours a murky dark brown with hints of an orange tinged ruby. Two fingers of tight khaki head on an ever careful pour, just keeps on sticking around.

Nose has cherries and a red wine vinegar note which lends a tartness, toffee sweetness, a light lemony dish soap note.

Pretty sweet, light tartness tucked in there to give it some depth and complexity. Cherries, wood, anise, caramel, toffee, molasses, dark bread, earth, light roast, candi sugar, bit of booze in the finish, round body with a bit of carbonation sparkle in the follow through. Flanders meets Belgian dark

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Photo of woosterbill
3.95/5  rDev -5.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

33cl bottle into a Duvel tulip.

A: Hazy deep, deep orange-red body with a lovely two fingers of creamy tan head. Great retention, good lace. Lovely.

S: Vanilla, cassis, cherry, oak, caramel, dark fruits. Big, rich, and only lightly tart. Beautiful aroma - intense, complex, and inviting.

T: Toffee, dark fruits, and booze start things off. Beautifully Quad-like at first, but the booze just takes over midway through. Too harsh, especially for being under 10%.

M: Fairly full body, high carbonation. Intense.

O: This was a bit of a disappointment, as I couldn't get enough of the aroma but found the alcohol flavor to be simply overpowering. Maybe this bottle was just super-fresh and it will calm down with a bit of age. I definitely want to try the more sour Reserva version of this...


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

cap says bottled FEB2011

A- it didn't make much commotion when i popped the cap, but there's a huge expansion of light khaki colored foam in my bulbous belgian goblet and for such high alcohol content, it really sticks around. the head settles noisily into a lumpy surface, the finally into a hearty ring with plentiful lace. the body of this one is an opaque murky deep brown with a hint of red, as the color of the label would suggest. this is a fine lookin brew.

S- the first thing i notice are basement type yeast aromas along with floral hops, definite figs, and sour cherries. digging a little further i find band aids, sweet cookie like malt, melon, papaya, pineapple, black grape, cinnamon, brown sugar, nutmeg, field corn? wtf.. green wood, damp wood, milk chocolate, and raspberry. very complex and very intriguing.

T- now i guess i understand what the little man is smiling about. oerbier begins with the lovely cherry flavor from the aroma then transforms itself into the roasted and hoppy flavors of an american porter. noble hops are clean and floral and although there is some alcohol bitterness, there's no boozy taste or rubbing alcohol or anything off-putting. the malt character here is dark and roasted and cocoa molasses and when i close my eyes i just think of black goo in a jar. after the initial hit of cherry flavor the fruit and funk are quite tame and i would very much like to age a bottle of this for a year or so to let some of these raw flavors diminish, as was the case with me and goose island pere jacques. the subtle red fruit flavor that lurks in the background and into the finish, stripped of bitterness, i would have to call pomegranate.

MF- in the beginning, the expansiveness of this beer's foam translated directly into the feel. i'm pretty sure that any mouth with a pH+8 would have caused this to foam, releasing all these wonderful volatiles into the sinuses at the cost of a few burps. my bulbous goblet is effectively a snifter on stilts, so several good swirls helped achieve a velvety, tightly carbonated feel with perfect dryness for the style.

D- after checking out the de dolle website i expected this one to be more tart, more wild, and fruitier. assertive hop flavor is well received on my end and i found the balance to be agreeable. nat en straf is doggone right.

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Photo of Chico1985
3.55/5  rDev -15.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3.5

11.6 oz (!) bottle. Cap reads May 2010, so this is a little over a year old.

Uber-carbonation, glass fills up with off-white head on the slightest pour, but eventually some beer is visible, an odd shade of light reddish-brown with pink highlights. Retains well at a half finger.

Pretty good smell, reminds me of figs and fruitcake drizzled with caramel. Some brown sugar and spices.

Taste is a change compared to the nose but not bad. Unexpected tartness up front with flavors of apple and red wine, lots of yeast, caramel, licorice, slight hop presence, some warming alcohol. Some toasty bread on the finish.

Not a big fan of the mouthfeel. Feels a bit thin and too carbonated for a 9%, detracts from the flavors. A bit on the boozy side.

I think I'd like it alot more if the mouthfeel was improved, definitely not one of my favorite BSDA's but good overall.

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Photo of g00dness
4.78/5  rDev +14.1%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 11.6 oz bottle into a tulip glass. Made about 2 inches of beautiful foamy head on top, with fine bubbles tracking up through the dark woodstain brown looking beer.

The nose is complex esters, malt and yeast, giving an impression of freshly lacquered wood (especially given the color).

The taste is sweet but not in any way cloying since an excellent balance of bitter and sour keep it together. Tastes like baked apples, spices and malts with a hint of yeast and hops. Very excellent beer.

The mouthfeel is really smooth with all of the small bubbles coursing through. The high level of carbonation is probably what keeps this from being sticky, while the high amount of sweetness provides an excellent viscosity.

It's an excellently drinkable beer for a 9 percenter that is really thick.

Highly recommend.

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De Dolle Oerbier from Brouwerij De Dolle Brouwers
Beer rating: 4.19 out of 5 with 1,013 ratings