Kasteel Donker | Brouwerij Van Honsebrouck N.V.

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Kasteel DonkerKasteel Donker
BA SCORE
4.12/5
Exceptional
913 Ratings
Kasteel DonkerKasteel Donker
BEER INFO

Brewed by:
Brouwerij Van Honsebrouck N.V.
Belgium
vanhonsebrouck.be

Style: Quadrupel (Quad)

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 11.00%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by BeerAdvocate on 10-14-2001

BEER STATS
Ranking:
#2,016
Reviews:
400
Ratings:
913
pDev:
13.35%
Bros Score:
4.8
 
 
Wants:
98
Gots:
176
Trade:
3
HISTOGRAM
 
User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 913 |  Reviews: 400
Photo of danflux
3.95/5  rDev -4.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Photo of Grackos
4.09/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Photo of ikidunot
4.1/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of steverx8
4.25/5  rDev +3.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Photo of StoutElk_92
4.68/5  rDev +13.6%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

11.2 oz. bottle

Pours dark maroon red brown with a creamy khaki colored foam head. Smells like red apple, grapes, pear, plum, cherry, banana, apricot, dried fruit, peppery clove spice, chocolate, toasty caramel malts, toffee, brown sugar, molasses, with floral earthy herbal grassy pine. Tastes like sweet rich toasty caramel malts, toffee, brown sugar, molasses, chocolate, red apple, grapes, pear, plum, dark cherry, banana, apricot, dried fruit, peppery clove spice, with floral earthy herbal grassy pine. Feels medium bodied, creamy smooth with moderate low carbonation. Overall a really nice quad.

 603 characters

Photo of JayQue
4.24/5  rDev +2.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Very good Quad. Poured from a stubby 330 ml bottle into my Chimay goblet. Dense mahogany brown color with a thin cream colored head. The head faces quickly to a covering of the glass which remains for a good while. There are spots of filmy lacing on the glass. Aroma is rich, dark fruit raisins and cherries and malt. Flavor is rich, dark fruit, malt, candi sugar and Belgian yeast. Slightly sweet, malty fruit flavor. Mouthfeel is rich and fairly smooth with the alcohol presence more warming than hot. I had this beer for a year and the aging probably helped mellowing it. In all, a veary tasty Quad.

 610 characters

Photo of goodbeergoodfood
4.5/5  rDev +9.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Look is mahogany brown nice head based on pour, lots of lacing on the glass.
Aroma is packed with an amazing dark fruits grape or vinius notes ,deep rich malt wheat notes.
Taste is huge dark fruits very right dark cherries and a nice malty finish.
Mouth feels very nice.
Overall this is a great beer has been one of my favorite for sometime. I find it very appealing in all seasons has a year-round offering. Have enjoyed this on a hot summer day just as much is drinking it today on a very very cold day.

 506 characters

Photo of chinchill
4.15/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

330 ml stubby brown bottle served in a Belgian snifter.
Pours with very little head despite a vigorous pour, yet a durable partial coat and ring somehow appears and lingers on and on. Clear dark mahogany body.
Loads of dark dried fruit aromas. The flavor is sweet -- too sweet IMO -- but not so sweet as to impede consumption, largely because some subtle but countering bitter shows up in the finish and aftertaste. Hints of green apples with the dark dried fruits. High ABV is well hidden.

 494 characters

Photo of wisrarebeer
3.51/5  rDev -14.8%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

Photo of Drunk-Monkey-Candyholic
4.28/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 4.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Great beer smooth and can knock u on ur butt.

45 characters

Photo of rulisekmartin
3.99/5  rDev -3.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Photo of paulish
4.25/5  rDev +3.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Photo of Gajo74
4.16/5  rDev +1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Drinking a Kasteel Donker at B Cafe, NYC, my go to Belgian place.
Poured into a goblet, it displays a rich dark mahogany color with a creamy tan head. The head is not as massive as other quads, but it does yield a sticky lace.
In the nose there is the sweetness of raisins, prunes and plum, along with the inviting sensation of freshly roasted dark bread. Light spice and a touch of cocoa lightly ornament the overall aroma.
In the mouth there is a dark fruit and dark candi sugar, even cola like sweetness. Full bodied and fluffy with a gentle carbonation. As I drink it, I also begin to pick up cherries and light citrus peel, which are soon reflected in the flavor. There is also a sense of dark marmalade or jam that is balanced by a finish that is lightly peppery and even with a touch of hops bitterness. As for the alcohol, it is definitely there, however, it is pushed to the background and never boozy.
Rich, dense and complex. A robust malt texture that alternates between dark bread and biscuity. Highly aromatic and dynamic; I should add that as I’m finishing it, I pick up new aromas, mainly biscuit, grass and licorice.
It is not my favorite quad ever considering the ones I rate above it are not as sweet. However, it is finely crafted, tasty and dynamic; well deserving of its high rating.

 1,314 characters

Photo of nordsee
3.94/5  rDev -4.4%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of Dactrius
4.24/5  rDev +2.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Photo of mistahmojoryan
3.78/5  rDev -8.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Photo of needMIbeer
3.84/5  rDev -6.8%
look: 4.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Photo of shadyside
4.1/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of nuts43
3.45/5  rDev -16.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Photo of threeviews
4.68/5  rDev +13.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.25

Poured at cellar temperature from a 33cl bottle (Best By: May 2022...packaged 30 May 2017)into the signature, Kasteel stemmed goblet.

A - An aggressive pour yelids a beer that is dark mahogany in color but when set against light, it is more of a deep, ruby red. The head only amounted to 1-finger kahki colored head with little retention. Although the 11% ABV would tend to stiffle head, I have seen other Belgians of this strength create massive tops that last indefinitely. Knowing that this beer does NOT go through referementation in the bottle, the lack of head is understandable and should be a reason that Van Honsebrouck reconsiders using bottle refermentation for ALL of their beers. (4.25)

S - The aroma is a lovely bouquet that includes Milk Chocolate, Caramel, Raisin, Plum, and a hint of Banana. Even when rising above cellar temperature, there is absolutely no alcohol in the nose. (5.0)

T - It is a beautiful Quadruple-style ale with all of the trimmings. It has all of the aromas in the nose with a nice, lingering milk chocolate finish, yet far from cloying. This is an ideal digestif beer on its own or with a rich chocolate or custard-based dessert. (4.75)

M - Medium-Full mouthfeel with a delicate and creamy carbonation which finishes surprisingly dry. Regardless of temperature, the alcohol remains hidden throughout making this dangerously drinkable. However, the pithy flavors and relatively hefty body keep this very much a degustation beer. (4.75)

O - Although the brewery thinks otherwise, Kasteel Donker would benefit from bottle refermentation (in addition to the already 3-week lagering time). Considering the 6.50Euro price for a 4-Pack (in a grocery store), it is an absolute bargain. However, when you see the $20+USD price tag in The States, I think other options exist that are a bit better. This is a well made beer with great consistency but if I am going to spend this type of money, I prefer Kasteel Barista Chocolate Quad. (4.25)

 1,978 characters

Photo of rarigney
4.77/5  rDev +15.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.75

Photo of The_Bujon
4.55/5  rDev +10.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours a superb full bodied plum looking brew with caramel head. The body looks divine, the head unfortunately dissipated quickly even served at the 12degrees recommended.

Aroma is sweet with figs and perhaps spiced apple.

Taste is sublime, quite sweet, but that mix of fruits, malts, caramel is absolutely top drawer, can't think of too many beers that taste better.

A nice warmer this one, floats down the throat like a medicinal tonic for a chesty cough, and the 11% is reasonably well hidden.

Overall, this is a top top brew, if only the foamy head stuck around, I'd dare say this would be in my overall top 10 beers of all time.....it might still regardless.

A must try beer!

 684 characters

Photo of GlennWB
4.59/5  rDev +11.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

Photo of MikeNatalie
4.5/5  rDev +9.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Photo of Gobearswalter34
4.58/5  rDev +11.2%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

L- Pours a dark brown, nearly black, with a 1/2 finger creamy,off-white head..
S- Mostly sweetness and malt. Not big.
T- Very sweet dark fruits slap you in your face. Some carmel malt and brown sugar. A little coffee and nuttiness. A little pepper detected. Way too easy of a drinker for 11%.
F- Incredibly smooth with slight warming
O- very sweet quad that goes down wonderfully!

 389 characters

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Kasteel Donker from Brouwerij Van Honsebrouck N.V.
Beer rating: 4.12 out of 5 with 913 ratings