Duvel Belgian Golden Ale | Brouwerij Duvel Moortgat NV

7,901 Ratings
Duvel Belgian Golden AleDuvel Belgian Golden Ale

Brewed by:
Brouwerij Duvel Moortgat NV

Style: Belgian Strong Pale Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 8.50%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by BeerAdvocate on 12-06-2000

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Ratings: 7,901 |  Reviews: 2,818
Photo of DaftCaskBC
4.08/5  rDev -4.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A: Massive 1 1/2" soapy white head that left a nice lacing in my Duvel tulip glass over straw coloured liquid with very good clarity.

S: Floral, citrus, and a white wine alcohol type smell.

T: Bitter and refreshing taste of citrus and white wine.

M: Medium to thin viscosity with a medium level of fine carbonation.

O: Very drinkable Belgian Strong Pale Ale, but I actually prefer Piraat 9.

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Photo of barrenbane
4.58/5  rDev +7%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

A - Light golden color and hazy. Pours a thick white head with exceptional lacing.

S - Smells fruity and bitter (from the alcohol) -- similar to other Belgian Strong Ales.

T - Sharp, tangy, and fruity. Has a pleasant dryness. Although it tastes outstanding, there are other BSAs I prefer over this.

M - Dry and carbonated, similar to a fine champagne. Quite full-bodied as well.

O - This beer exemplifies what a world-class BSA should taste like. The consistency, flavor, and aroma merge together almost flawlessly.

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Photo of divineaudio
3.47/5  rDev -18.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

bomber into a tulip

a - pours a light hazy yellow with a big three finger, fluffy white head. retention is excellent - head falls to a thin cap and stays all the way to the bottom of the glass. also leaves tons of sticky alce.

s - slightly toasty and grassy. lots of pungency present from the saaz hops which is not really a good thing to my nose.

t - lightly toasted bread balanced by light hop bitterness and lots of spicy notes.

m - medium bodied and chewy. high co2 content.

o - pretty good but not great. definitely not a session beer at 8.5%. certainly not deserving of it's reputation.

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Photo of EkimGram
4.68/5  rDev +9.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Appearance: 11.2oz (330mL) bottle poured into Duvel tulip. Pale cloudy golden-yellow colour with a monstrous, bubbly head that fades to a nice substantial lacing. Constant stream of light carbonation emits from the stem of the glass.

Smell: Spicy and very yeasty. Sweet, clovey.

Taste: Even more yeast and spice. Just a hint of booze followed by a healthy bite. Cloves, yeast, and a hint of banana finish it.

Mouthfeel: Medium-bodied. Carbonation is biting and aggressive. Finishes slightly sticky.

Drinkability: Excellent, truly excellent. Lots of flavour and feel. The alcohol is barely noticeable, everything goes down so smoothly. I can't wait to crack open the next bottle I have in my fridge. It really doesn't get much better than this.

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Photo of dogfishandi
4.06/5  rDev -5.1%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

11.2 oz capped bottle at fridge temp poured into a snifter. best before 10 2013.

pours out a very nice pale golden color, just slightly cloudy. huge 4-5 fingers of pure white head with big soapy bubbles and amazing rocky retention. super thick lace just clings to the glass everywhere. lots of carbonation bubbles rising up. just an amazing looking beer, i dont think it gets much better than this.

in the aroma, lots of belgian yeast coming through, lots of fruity bannana and spicy clove, some sweet, dry maltiness and a bit of a floral hop kick. a slight hint of alcohol.

a nice balance of yeast, malt, and hops. yeast comes in with some spiciness, clove, bannana, fruits with some sweet, dry grainy maltiness, and a slight floral hop kick. definatly has a warming effect the more you drink it, despite its crisp light feel.

smooth, full bodied. a slight tartness with a creamy feel and a very dry finish.

overall, a classic great belgian beer, the prime example of the strong pale style. ill definatly be drinking this again sometime, but still, theres many belgians i would pick up before this one.

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Photo of midworken
4.43/5  rDev +3.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

A cloudy, medium, and straw yellow body with quite a bit of active carbonation. Poured a light frothy head with incredible lacing.
Smelled a mixture of spices and tart fruitiness. Cloves are strongly present. A very strong nose that begs for a taste.
Taste was reminiscent of the aroma, completing the flavor profile. Spices were well balanced with tart apples finished by a beautiful hop bitterness. I was taken back by how strong in flavor this beer is with its high drinkability - light body, great carbonation and and a lasting mouthfeel. Purely fantastic!

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Photo of angrybabboon
4.51/5  rDev +5.4%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Review adapted from notes taken 3/28/11

Note: I've had this a number of times, this review is from my most recent bottle

Appearance: Truly a beautiful looking beer - epic, fluffy white head that lasts a long time, leaves great lacing - clear golden color

Smell: Some spicy, funky Belgian yeast, pale malts, some light fruits, a dry-smelling sweetness

Taste: A lot going on, and the flavors blend together magnificently - spicy, herbal hops, dry sweetness, tart, a little funky - a lot of light fruits - the fruity esters are kind of juicy, but ultimately the beer is on the dry side - the only issue is that the alcohol is way too obvious, especially as it warms up

Mouthfeel: Light to medium body, nicely effervescent, some lingering alcohol

Overall: An undeniable classic

There are so many good things about this beer. Claiming that it is a benchmark for the style may be an understatement. It deserves all of its accolades... Although you may not agree if you don't like Belgian yeast.

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Photo of ONUMello
4.43/5  rDev +3.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

330ml bottled poured into a snifter. Best before 10/13.
A: Golden colored, even with a slow pour this has a generous two-finger head that leaves thick lacing.
S: Apples, just a hint of clove.
T: Apple, citrus, spice, toasty malt. Complex and balanced.
M: The head is unbelievable smooth, the palate crisp and everything incredibly balanced.
O: Hard to get better than this. Every part of this is top notch, tasty, and enjoyable to drink.

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Photo of Kuromaru
4.48/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Appearance--Pours a lightly hazy, pale golden with an almost unbelievably thick, pillowy white head.

Smell--Belgian candy sugar and yeast jump out straight away, followed by a delicate spiciness, and orange/ lemon rind.

Mouthfeel--Mild carbonation, heavier in the body than one might expect. It's a bit sticky, and could stand to be a little cleaner/ dryer in the finish.

Taste--Lightly toasted malts and Belgian candy sugar are the defining characteristics. Spices and yeast swim around together next, with a nice citrus zest at the end.

Overall--Spices and citrus zest cover the alcohol almost completely, which is impressive, given the relative strength. This beer is highly satisfying and approachable, and would make an excellent gateway into the wonderful world of Belgian beer. My only criticism would be that, considering that this is a golden ale, the finish could be a bit dryer, but overall this beer is very, very hard to pass up.

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Photo of SebD
4.58/5  rDev +7%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Appearance: It has a nice bright golden colour to it. It has a nice thick white head that dies down slowly and has very nice lacing.

Smell: The aromas definitly give out hints of spices, grainy malts, citrus and yeast.

Taste: Like the aromas, it has a nice citrucy hop taste to it, with a nice spiciness, sweet malts and a bit of yeast.

Mouthfeel: It has a high carbonation with a very nice complexity in the flavours.

Drinkability: It's a very smooth drinkable beer accompanied with great flavours and aromas. It's an overall great tasting Ale.

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Photo of BMoldy
4.23/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from the bottle (Best before: 05/13) into a Fagnes glass. Slightly hazy yellow-gold appearance with an extremely fluffy, rocky white head that easily fills half the glass and sticks to everything. Very clean, fresh aroma comprising mostly delicate, grassy hops and a slight yeasty spice, while pale malt smooths everything out. No booziness at all, despite the 8.5% ABV. Taking a sip, light fruit (apples and pears) and faintly tart yeast rise first, followed by a deliciously smooth, slightly sweet, malty body. The hops are only along for the ride, hardly exhibiting any noticeable presence. Though the alcohol isn't very present at first sip –indeed, the body is remarkably light in spite of it– the beer does warm as it goes down. Relatively clean finish, with just a touch of malt and booze.

A great present from my dad, this is a brew I haven't had in easily three years. I used to remember it for its potency, but having worked my palate a bit more, I feel like I can now really appreciate its smoothness and fantastic composition. Certainly a great representation of the style, and a classic that continues to live up to its name.

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Photo of Meerkey
3.93/5  rDev -8.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A: lots of foamy, white head. Slightly cloudy pale, clear yellow-gold. Lots of bubbles.

S: Citrus and hops. Some grainy malts. Spices.

T: Spices and hops. Little citrus. Somewhat grainy -yeast and malts.

M: Tingly, clean, full and lingering flavor.

O: Rather tasty and refreshing. Not amazing, but enjoyable.

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Photo of Yagman3000
4.2/5  rDev -1.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a bottle into my gigantic Duvel goblet (three cheers for a gift box set).

Appears a light golden yellow with some initial bubbling head that fades down to a foamy head. Bubbly lace rests along the sides.

Smells spicy and yeasty. A hint of black pepper but the Belgian yeast comes through big time.

Tastes of floral citrus with plenty of spice. Certainly some complex flavors with layers. Again, I have to cone back to the pepper notes as striking me as prominent.

Mouthfeel is full with a slow gentle fade out. Sour at the end. I'm a little surprised at its high level of effervescence.

Overall I haven't had a Duvel in a long time but genuinely appreciate it in the genre of a Golden. Really enjoy the spice to this beer.

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Photo of nofalltoofar
4.83/5  rDev +12.9%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Poured into tulip glass

A: A beutiful beer. Looks like liquid gold with a thick white head sitting on top. The head dissipates to a fingers-width.

S: Musty, yet aromatic. Spicy

T: Lots of fruit. Sweet and yet gamey. Plays with lots of different flavors on the tongue. Notes of citrus

M: Smooth, not overcarbonated. Wonderful consistency for sipping, or even gulps if you love to waste money and do not feel like appreciating what you are holding.

I waited with baited breath when I tried this beer. I feared the hype was just that. But it wasn't. This beer is everything they said it would be. It tastes incredible, leaving nothing to be desired. It has depth of flavor while still remaining tasty and accessible. It is a supremely balanced beer. I enjoyed every single drop.

Also, this truly is a beer of many vocations. I happened to enjoy it after a meal, however upon retrospection I believe it would have gone very good with the meal too.

Duvel lives up to its image and is worth exploring for any skeptics wondering about the hype.

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Photo of ArrogantBastage
4.2/5  rDev -1.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured into a Duvel Tulip

A: Bright, clear, golden yellow with a very thick head. Looks beautiful in the tulip. Head lingers for the first several sips and then just remains as a thin ring with an island in the center of the glass. Love the constant stream of bubbles from using the tulip.

S: Lots of spice and some phenols when the beer is first poured. Let the beer sit for a few moments and it opens up more. Some fruitiness in the aroma tinged with spicy hops and a fair amount of yeast.

T: Nice blend of light malt, spicy hops, and yeast. The hops and malt lead the way followed by some phenols and the yeast. The finish dries completely making this beer very crisp, no lingering bitterness.

M: Light bodied with a lot of carbonation.

D: So easy to have more than one after another after another due to how crisp this beer is. Sneaky and lives up to the name. Very enjoyable and one that I would recommend for those looking to find a way to get into Belgian beers.

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Photo of UTCengOwl
4.3/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Bought a bottle at the Central Market 25% off sale. I hadn't reviewed this and it really was a shame. I had a friend that came back from Europe and she said at this was unequivocally the best thing she drank over there. Very much a classic girl. It reminded me of the bottle I had in the fridge and I had to go review it. Served in a Great Divide balloon glass... but I could have used the room of a Duvel signature glass for the pour.

Clear, beautiful, golden. Huge, unrestrained, wispy head. Great differentiation between the liquid and head. Great retention and lacing. This is how beers are supposed to look... except I like a denser head. Otherwise absolutely perfect.

Musky and peppery. Some dense, but bright fruits below that. Much funkier than I remembered. Complex as all heck. Different notes keep coming to the forefront. Just plain interesting and unique.

The taste is much more of the fruit, but still with emphasized muskiness. Might be a bit much for me to process at e moment... but I'm also not a huge fan of peppery noble hops. Otherwise, this would hit the A+ ranking pretty easily. Medium mouthfeel and carbonation. Quite drinkable. Quite interesting.

Duvel is a unique beer all to itself. I thi the closest thing I've had before is an Orval, but those are still worlds apart. Funky, hoppy, complex, fruity. A beer to aspire to.

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Photo of JTSbeerislife
4.33/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

11.2 oz. bottle from the winter of 2010/2011 production (Best before 05 2013 on bottle), well stored in a temperature controlled environment, Poured into a Duvel Tulip with nucleation etching.

Pours a huge four finger head, effervescent, very lively, beautiful golden color, with a consistent explosion of carbonation from the nucleation point. Head settles down to a solid two fingers, and then finally after quite some time one finger. One of the liveliest Ales I have drunk. Very nice lacing on glass.

Very pleasant aroma of Belgium yeast, candied sugars, very refined, elegant, with some blonde malt in the background. Not powerful but very enjoyable.

Very crisp, highly carbonated entry in the mouth. The carbonation is very Champagne like and extremely enjoyable. There is a delicious, distinct Belgium yeast present with just a very light hint of alcohol that actually helps balance out this Ale. This is followed by light malt flavors and a bit of the candied sugar flavors so typically Belgium. There is a slight bitterness in the finish which is very pleasant and lingers with the yeast.

Overall this is just a delicious and thirst quenching Ale. The 8.5% ABV is not at all noticeable. A very refined and balanced Ale that reminds me of a fine Champagne. It seems at its best at about 45 to 50 degrees. This is not a “big” Belgium Ale and if you are looking for a very intense experience you should look elsewhere. I have overheard some negative comments about this Ale but I feel that it is exactly what it should be, not every Belgium can or should be a Triple. If you have not tried this please do so with an open mind and you will be rewarded with a very pleasant experience. I have enjoyed this Ale many times over the years and if fresh it is very consistent.

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Photo of rowingbrewer
3.41/5  rDev -20.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

This beer poured a nice light golden color with a little haze since i got the last pour and some yeast. the smell was slightly hoppy and a little spicey. the flavor was slightly hoppy, not flavor wise just a little bitterness, and a small amount of sweetness and an almost heiniken like skunkiness. the mouthfeel was ok but over all i was unimpressed by this beer

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Photo of hopsgirl35
4.25/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured into a Duvel tulip glass.

Apperance: It poured out golden with a small ring.

Smell: Strong sweet hoppy aroma with a malty
sweetness but not as much.

Taste: Very strong with the first sip after that
it had a very sweet fruity spicy taste.

Feel: very warm going down the hoppy taste lingures and brings out the liquor taste.

Overall: very good beer on a cold winters night,
a great gift. This is a beer I always keep around.

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Photo of magictacosinus
4.68/5  rDev +9.3%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Poured into a non-Duvel tulip glass out of a 11.2 oz bottle with proper pouring directions. Freshness date on the bottle is listed as July 2013.

Appearance: It contains an intense, thickened golden color with carbonation visible around the glass. It looks absolutely delectable.

Smell: Sugary malty flavors and strong hoppy aromas immediately tingle the nose.

Taste: Simply amazing. It's sweet and well balanced, yet has a spicy kick to it. The high ABV is an intense factor that make this beer spark. Tastes of honey, sweet apples, canned apricots and other wonderful delicacies are very present.

Feel: It's smooth and resembles champagne, yet also has a warming and hearty effect similar to liquor. This is a beer that truly makes me ecstatic due its gentle effect on the palate and stinging rise on the throat. It is such an easy beer to drink, even with its complexity.

Overall: This is a legendary beer recipe that has been romanticized and written about to death - with good reason! How anyone could casually drink it on a weekly basis is beyond me, yet its tempting flavorful experience is a well justified excuse. Thanks to Brouwerij Duvel Moortgat, you can drink with the devil without running the risk of him stealing your soul in the process – even though drinking this beer at times seems to emulate such an experience!

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Photo of zimm421
4.56/5  rDev +6.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.25

Poured from a 750ml bottle into a tulip glass. The beer appears a clear, pale yellow that is easily see-thru. Has a thick, sudsy white head that is about 3 fingers and leaves beautiful lacing all over the upper part of the glass.

The aroma is full of spices, a little bit of black pepper, earthiness and slight citrus from the hops, as well as some wonderful light pilsner malts. The taste is very complex. Bready, spicy and bitter. There's a great balance between the malts and hops and the spices fit perfectly in here. Everything just seems to fit together the way it should and it all hides the alcohol flavors extremely well. The aftertaste leaves nice spiciness and bitterness on the tongue and each sip leaves flavors for a long time.

The mouthfeel is crisp and clean with good amounts of carbonation, there's a nice bite on the tongue from the carbonation. Even with the bite from the carbonation, there is still a nice smoothness in each sip. This is extremely drinkable, and each sip makes you want to go back for more. Overall, this is an amazing brew. Annoyed with myself that I waited this long to try it. Everything just fits together so perfectly and the flavors are so appealing that you can't step away.

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Photo of HumanParaquat
3.51/5  rDev -18%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured into a tulip glass a pale golden color, forming a massive rocky head like soap suds. Lacing is superb and the head is retained till the last drop. Looks gorgeous.

The smell of orange blossoms, honey and green apples are very aggressive in the nose with hints of yeast and spice.

Tastes mostly of honey and orange peel up front with notes of sour green apple and pepper. Crisp pils malts are detectable in the middle. Quite sweet and a bit boozy. Finishes very dry and bitter, much like champagne.

Mouthfeel is also quite champagne-like...very lively. High carbonation. Residual alcohol and tart sweetness really stick to the palette.

This is one of those "world-class" beers that i just don't get. It's not awful...there are just several others in this style that I find much more palatable.

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Photo of jgurley
3.56/5  rDev -16.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Aggressive pour yields a massive white head with beautiful lace. Opaque luminous gold color. Smell is slightly vinous, malty, yeasty. Taste is sour white grape, booze, a little hop bitterness. Refreshing medium mouthfeel. A little bubbly. Sticky bitter finish.

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Photo of doughanson78
3.41/5  rDev -20.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

11.2oz. bottle poured into a snifter.

A: Golden straw color. Hazy like a Hefe. Huge 4 finger head frothy/rocky as all hell. Head would've been bigger but glass can only hold so much. Bright white. Best head retention I've seen, don't think it will ever go away. Great lacing.

S: Very big clove aroma. Peppery. Slight hints of apple. Light spiciness. Maybe some coriander.

T: Very big cloves again. Definitely a peppery spiciness. Light lemon highlights. A few other citrusy hints.

M: Medium to full bodied. Medium carbonation. The pepper leaves a very mild burn in your throat. Slightly creamy.

O: Kind of disappointed. Reminds me of a Hefe/Weizenbock minus the banana fruitiness to balance it out. This style just might not be for me as I don't think 2300+ BA's could be wrong. I'll give more in this style a shot and maybe come back to this one and rereview.

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Photo of chocosushi
4.3/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

lil' Duvel->Unibroue Tulip

A ~ Deep gold with great carbonation. Head like a mix of snow and marshmallow.

S ~ Lemon juice, dry bread, apple, champagne

T ~ More golden delicious apples, sunkissed grains. Hefty amount of hopping for a BSPA which is excellent. Also a bit of raw dough, haystacks, and tangerine.

M ~ Creamy, Soft, Prickly. Kinda tart with a good dry finish.

D ~ A classic. Purchased often.

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Duvel Belgian Golden Ale from Brouwerij Duvel Moortgat NV
4.28 out of 5 based on 7,901 ratings.
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