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Duvel Belgian Golden Ale | Brouwerij Duvel Moortgat NV

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Duvel Belgian Golden AleDuvel Belgian Golden Ale
8,010 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:
A Duvel is still seen as the reference among strong golden ales. Its bouquet is lively and tickles the nose with an element of citrus which even tends towards grapefruit thanks to the use of only the highest-quality hop varieties. This is also reflected in the flavour, which is beautifully balanced with a hint of spiciness. Thanks to its high CO2 content, this beer has a wonderful roundness in the mouth. A Duvel is both the perfect thirst quencher and the ideal aperitif.

Added by BeerAdvocate on 12-06-2000

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Ratings: 8,010 |  Reviews: 2,857
Photo of Mar02x
4/5  rDev -5.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I ordered this one while I was sitting on a nice terrace in the sun next to the sea; the perfect setting for this beer.

A - A good creamy white foam settles to a thick cap. The body is yellow straw color and bright with bubbles racing from the center of the glass to the top. Very nice and appealing.

S - Citrus, lemon and yeast

T - Hop bitterness, lemon, bitter after taste.

M - The carbonation is harsh to medium, minimal alcohol warmth, medium body, with minimal stickiness in the finish.

D - A very good Belgian beer, very easy to drink considering the higher ABV.

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Photo of KMcG
4.7/5  rDev +10.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A: Pale yellow, lots of bulbble action, beautiful pillowy 2-3 finger head that leaves a thin lace of foam on the beer. Superior legs!

S: Lemon, white grape & musty funk

T: Complex: nice yeast flavor, a slight hop bitterness, champagne, and some sort of spice in the background that is difficult to identify (clove?).

M: Refreshing, crisp, slightly tart, lots of fine bubbles

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4.7/5  rDev +10.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 33cl bottle into a Duvel glass. Bottle BBE 01/2014

Spectacular looking pale ale, beautiful head of fine bubbles rising an inch and a half up the tulip. Clings to the glass.

Annoyingly Im a bit congested but from what I can smell the aroma has some hint of apples, nice sweet fruits.

The beer is very crisp, extremely refreshing, big bold presence and very, very more-ish.

Not my first Duvel, but my first review. This is a magnificent beer. A fine way to pass some time at Amsterdam Schiphol.

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Photo of MasterSki
4.13/5  rDev -2.8%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Best before January 2014. Served in a Surly Darkness glass.

A - Three fingers of creamy white foam settle to a thick meringue of a cap, leaving splotch intricate lacework. Body is a lightly hazed white peach flesh color, with streams of bubbles visibly streaming upwards. Reference quality appearance for a Belgian Strong Pale Ale.

S - Spicy Belgian yeast, grains of paradise, some light stone and citrus fruit sweetness, hint of banana, lightly buttery pilsner malt and grain character, and a touch of candi sugar. There's perhaps a hint of alcohol present as it warms up.

T - Citrus and stone fruit character is a bit more pronounced, but otherwise the flavor is a bit more smoothed out. Grain, spicy Belgian yeast, pilsner malt. Not as sweet as the aroma. No alcohol in the flavor whatsoever.

M - The carbonation is harsh and mildly unpleasant, even when you take the style into account. Grainy, dry texture, minimal alcohol warmth, medium body, with only minimal stickiness in the finish.

D - A very good Belgian beer made on an impressively large scale. While there are other takes on the style that I prefer I would happily have this without complaint. Very easy to drink considering the higher ABV - guess the name is appropriate.

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Photo of Krakistophales
3.16/5  rDev -25.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

A: Pours golden with a big white fluffy head that retains as white bubbly film

S: Hints of cane sugar, some spice, little bit of a citrus zest, but pretty muted

T: Not much going on here. At first, a bit of a peppery/citrus zest and spice mix, the end being a bitter, kind of pilsner-ish hop finish. Not impressed.

O: I don't see why this gets rave reviews. I've had much more flavorful strong pales and pilsners. Oh well, it's not bad, but it's not good either.

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Photo of Dan3279
4.25/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Enjoyed from a 12oz bottle into a Duvel tulip at the Winking Lizard. The first thing you notice in the glass is the giant three inch fluffy head, and then you look down to see the nice golden body.

The aroma was nice with yeast, citrus and biscuits. The taste was exceptional, complex but at the same nothing is really overpowering. You get a lot hitting you up front with the hops, yeast, malts and some citrus. I really don't know what else to say about this beer that hasn't already been said.

The mouthfeel was great, a clean, crisp, refreshing beer that was easy to drink and enjoy.

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Photo of hailtotheale
3.73/5  rDev -12.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

As far as beers of this style go, I've got to give this one a solid B. I've had far too many great beers that are far more preferable to this that pure-and-simple blow me out of the water in this particular style. My scale may be jaded by the Golden Ales from Russian River and Iron Fist, which have so far set my standard for this beer.

Appearance: Nothing unusual - classic golden style, clear finish, golden with a mild-brown in color.

Smell: Derived pretty evenly from hop, yeast, and malt characteristics. Nothing remarkably obtrusive about the smell, some mildly floral hop characteristics.

Taste: Average. Really about all I can say. Perhaps my favorite characteristics of this beer come from truly accentuating the yeast. Fermentation temperature issues? Not sure, but overall, I have to say that this beer doesn't quite blow my mind in taste as its American imitators do...

Mouthfeel: Great - even with extensive traveling, this beer maintains a good carbonation level, and a smooth overall mouthfeel.

Overall: Pretty good. Not exceptional. A function of mass-production?

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Photo of NilsFrisk
4/5  rDev -5.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Light pale with a big white head, dissapears a little to quickly.
Smells yeasty, and warm from the alcohol.
A lot of carbonation, a little to much maybe. A bitter character, some buttery yeast flavor, the 8,5 abv is hidden very well, but still warms your belly.

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Photo of pBRale
4.66/5  rDev +9.6%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

From tasting notes 8-25-11

Appearance: Tall foamy white head that quickly settles and has low retention. Clear, beautiful pale golden color. Highly carbonated.

Smell: Some fruitiness, with some alcohol on the nose. Intriguing array of smells.

Taste: Piney, some fruits, especially banana. There is a sugary taste as well. So many flavors that I am having trouble describing them because they meld so beautifully. One of the finest tasting beers I've had in a while.

Mouthfeel: Highly carbonated--springy, leaves the mouth wet and drooling for more. A very juicy beer.

Overall: An outstanding beer that truly takes a full bottle to meet, as new flavors and aromas emerge throughout the drink.

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Photo of pettis
4.33/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A: Beautiful towering and craterous white head, with numerous streams of bubbles streaming from the bottom to top of the glass.

S: Pale malts, a little bit of straw, and some spicy Saaz hops. The aroma is very nice, and I wish it would come through a little bit stronger.

T: Nice mix of sweetness from the malt and sugar and spiciness from the Saaz hops.

M: Smooth, nice carbonation, though a little thin in mouthfeel.

The lively carbonation and balanced flavor profile make this beer extremely drinkable in spite of its 8.5% ABV--perhaps dangerously so! An excellent beer for those times when you're in the mood for something light in body and mouthfeel with good carbonation, but also full in flavor. This seems like a great beer for pairing with a meal.

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Photo of hoobaga
3.93/5  rDev -7.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Appearance: Pale, golden. Clear at first but gets hazier with pouring, typical of a bottle-conditioned beer. Big soapy head visible along with many small carbonation bubbles visible.

Smell: Slight spicy smell, a little touch of grass. Alcohol smell is definitely present, not in a negative way though. Citrus is also present, but not in a bright way, more of a dull citrus aroma.

Taste: Biscuity malt, slightly citrusy aroma on the top, medium spice-like taste, warm alcohol present, slight bitterness throughout (and even after). Many many flavors going on at the same time.

Overall: Very unique belgian beer, can't really say I've had something quite like this before. The Duvel brewery did a good job brewing a beer which has so many different flavors which compliments each other, somewhat like a flavor bouncing effect.

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Photo of Mako82
4.15/5  rDev -2.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured from bottle into a snifter glass

A - Clear, golden in color. Long lasting white foamy head, looks to be very fizzy
S - Grape champagne smell, followed by cloves, subtle malts in the background, smell of yeast
T - Slight chaukly taste, nice combination of simple malts and hops, hint of clove in the background, slight bitterness, very clean and refreshing
M - Fairly carbonated

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Photo of StaveHooks
4.36/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured in a Duvel tulip.

A - Hazy golden straw with 2 fingers of delicate white foam. Awesome retention and a ridiculous amount of lacing.

S - Sweet grassy aroma, twangy Belgian yeast, soft grain, over ripened golden delicious apples at first, but as it warms up the acidity comes out make it more of a tart aroma. Unknown spice and hints of alcohol.

T - Sweet grainy malt, spicy hops, some sourness comes through the middle, with tart apples in the background. It has an herbal bite towards the end. Finishes dry and slightly acidic.

M - Medium body, moderate carbonation.

Great yeast strain! The sour and acidic qualities really make this beer stand out. It's complex but focused.

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Photo of SkitzIrish3
4.5/5  rDev +5.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I've been waiting 4 months for this beer since I last had it overseas...

Pours with an insane amount of foam (that sparkles). Patience. Straw color, damn near clear, and good carbonation.

Smells spicy, orange and lemon, but mainly green apples.

Sweet and spicy on the palate, follows the nose. It is a bit sour and has a dry bitterness I didn't notice last time that is brought out by the alcohol. Tasty stuff and a must try.

I'm not 100%, but I think this tasted different when I had it in Ireland. Not sure if shipment has to do with a slight difference (it shouldn't with 8.5% ABV). I didn't taste the banana with this glass. Maybe my palate has grown. Still really good, but not up to the standards my palate had previously regarded it.

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Photo of output01x
4.36/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 330 mL. capped bottle (Best Before 10/2013) into a tulip glass.

A painstakingly slow pour releases a 3 1/2-finger snow white head that continues to grow and expand minutes after the pouring is complete. The body is a hazy yellow gold with torrents of energetic carbonation bubbles racing about. Thick lacing clings to the sides of the glass in globs.

Strong yeast aromas carry notes of lemon zest, orange rind, ripe green apples, and muscat grapes. The nose is slightly musty and a little sour but undeniably welcoming.

Just like the nose, the taste is filled with fruits including lemon zest and grapes. Also noticeable in the taste is some light, bready malts and light floral hops. Sweet and ever so slightly sour, the taste is light but complex. A slight alcohol warmth can be noticed growing in the back of the throat about 1/2 way through the beer.

Medium bodied with excellent carbonation, this beer is deceivingly drinkable. The body is light, crisp, refreshing, and easily swallowed. The carbonation is extremely fizzy but does not seem to adversely effect the taste at all.

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Photo of Clydesdale
4.56/5  rDev +7.3%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

A: Pours a bright, clear golden color. The massive, ivory colored head has a frothy, slightly rocky consistency. Head retention is outstanding, and gobs of sticky, splotchy lace adhere to the glass.

S: Some pale, sugar cookie-ish malty sweetness. Musty, herbal spiciness is prominent - noble hops seem to be included. Somewhat peppery. Fruity notes of golden delicious apples and ripe pears, with lesser hints of white grapes. There's also a light, perfumey alcohol presence.

T: Faintly grainy, with some sugar cookie sweetness up front. Quite spicy and musty, both from what have to be Saaz (or similar) hops and yeast phenols. Hop bitterness is a little higher than I was expecting. Fruity esters are prominent, with flavors of golden apples and pears. There's a softly tart, mildly vinous quality into the finish, along with some faint alcohol.

M: Medium-light body. Carbonation is perky, but refined. Faintly sticky at first, before a gradually increasing dryness into what becomes a crisp finish. Alcohol is present, but it drinks like a much lighter beer overall.

D: This is another Belgian mainstay I'd never had before. It's also an excellent beer, but it's a bit more pilsnery than I was expecting for the style, at least in terms of its apparent body and hoppiness. Definitely a unique and memorable brew. This is stunningly drinkable, balanced, and refined for such a hefty offering.

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Photo of mrkipling
3.46/5  rDev -18.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3.5

750ml corked bottle poured into a Trappistes Rochefort goblet.

A - Gorgeous fluffy white head, almost like marshmallow. Lovely golden hue. Tiny streams of bubbles escape to the surface from the bottom of the glass. Basically, it looks fantastic.

S - It obviously has the characteristically yeasty smell that you would expect. Citrusy, in particular lemon. Rather sweet. The smell of the alcohol peeks through as well; not so much as to be off-putting, but slightly too much for my taste.

T - I'm getting a slight sweetness, and a hint of the citrus that I can smell. It's quite refreshing, yet at the same time slightly bitter - although perhaps that's just because I favour silky smooth beers and am just developing a taste for this style.

M - I'm not so keen on the lasting impression that this beer leaves on my palate. At first it hides the alcohol content well but quickly becomes slightly too bitter. It's not quite smooth enough. However, it retains its carbonation perfectly and remains refreshing and ultimately enjoyable until the end.

O - If I was stocking up at a specialist beer store, this is not something that I would choose - I've had quite a few beers that I've enoyed far more. That said, it is definitely above average and still a very enjoyable beer. The fact that I can buy it at my local supermarket (which is not the fact with Rochefort 10, for example) means that I will undoubtedly be purchasing it on a semi-regular basis.

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Photo of Tschnab
4.09/5  rDev -3.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A- pale yellow almost gold pour with an active carbonation stream and a huge fluffy snow white foam.

S- green apples, honey, straw, and yeast.

T- like the smell, very honey like and lots of bubblegum and banana as well. green apple adds a tart layer, as I get some subtle champagne flavor. Just a bit metallic.

O- a classic. A great intro to Belgian beers, and a beer you can't go wrong with.

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Photo of dansmcd
3.78/5  rDev -11.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

From the stubby into the classic Duvel tulip.

A - Mountainous soapy head caps a murky amber. Great looking.

S - Cloves, apple and toffee.

T - Cloves, honey, sour apple. Dry. The warmth from the alcohol content is ever present but very drinkable all the same.

M - High in carbonation, thin bodied. Dry.

O - Not a massive fan of this classic but I will say that it's got the typical belgian yeast grunt with a touch of booziness. Good, not great.

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Photo of Callaghan
4.73/5  rDev +11.3%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

330ml bottle poured very slowly "unhurried", into a tulip. Best by date of 09 2013.

A: The head is the stuff of legend. Massive 3 finger white, creamy, though lumpy head. Slowly dissipates into about 1/2 finger, and never goes less than that. Easy to bring back some also, with a slow swirl of the glass. The color of the beer is a beautiful golden, dull lemon color. Slightly hazy, about perfect. Awesome lacing down the sides.

S: Everything seems very present. Yeast is strongest, but I also smell a lot of citrus, mostly lemon. Biscuit last. There is a lot going on, it is very complex. Slightly sweet too.

T: This is my first time trying this, after reading about it on this site. I am absolutely amazed, one of the best tasting beers I have ever had. Citrus comes through pretty strong. More than just lemon, some grapefruit and others. A hit (not a mistype) of alcohol in the middle, with biscuit and yeast. Very nice indeed. Still more going on at the finish, I must say, this is amazing. I get toasted malts, light hops, and more...it all blends very well.

M: Good amount of carbonation, dances on the tongue. Solid medium bodied. The aftertaste, I think, is helped with the light coating this beer leaves on the the tongue. The taste just lingers, and it is quite enjoyable.

O: Absolutely wonderful. This beer became even better after it warmed up a touch. I don't believe it has taken me this long to try Duvel, but I am really glad I did. So complex, yet extremely drinkable. Great tingle in the mouth, with a wonderful taste. Truly a great beer.

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Photo of CFHMagnet
4.41/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A slow and steady pour got 3 fingers of lively and lovely white foamy head at the top of my snifter attempting to break out. Bubbles rush from the bottom to the top of the glass like an inverted avalanche. The body is a light golden color. The head takes its time shrinking to the point where I can take a sip, and never completely leaves me.

Very subtle nose as has been noted. Yeast is the strongest, most apparent scent, and is backed by a biscuit aroma with bananas and spice. They blend together very well. After a few minutes I also began to pick out a gardeny aroma that almost reminded me of a big fresh salad.

Yeast and biscuit transition into banana and salad. Cuts off with spice and a bit of hops. Actually a little sour apple sprinkled in for good measure, almost like a fermenting sour apple. Makes for an invigoratingly good character.

Medium bodied. Bubbles bite the tongue enough to tell you they are there. Easy sipper, a tad drying. Only a little bitter.

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Photo of mooseo
4.83/5  rDev +13.6%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

11.2oz bottle poured into tulip glass.

A - Slightly hazy golden yellow, with a huge creamy white head. Massive. Bubbles rapidly rise from the middle of the glass. Great retention with lacing everywhere.

S - Delicious complex aroma. Citrusy (lemon & apple stick out) with some yeast, hops and spice.

T - Incredible. Up front are pleasant citrus notes, yeast, and toasted malts. The finish is spicy with a nice tart sweetness. Well balanced with just a bit of alcohol coming through and a hint of bitterness. Perfect taste.

M- Smooth, crisp, and refreshing. Lively carbonation.

D - This might be my favorite beer ever. Provides an all around great drinking experience. The drinkability is high and the taste is stunning.

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Photo of Parky1
3.93/5  rDev -7.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Straw, small bubbles create a long lasting frothy head.

Subtle and complex. Yeasty and spicy.

Very clean, again subtle and complex, too many flavours for this amatuer to pick out. Dry, yeast and coriander are part of it.

Dry and crisp, but smooth and strong.

No disguise of the 8.5% strength, many flavours well integrated and difficult to pick out. Refreshing!

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Photo of codfeast
4.35/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

50th review, on tap at my work.

A: A hazy pale yellow, with a massive white head. a small island of foam stayed anchored in the middle of my glass all the way through.

S: Spicy, earthy yeast, fruits(apricot and apple).

T: Spicy and sweet fruits battle it out, with the fruits winning in the end. Only to be cleaned out by the alcohol.

M: Crisp and clean, with a dry almost tannic finish.

O: A real standard. Very easy to drink. Pour myself one 4 out of 5 nights while doing my closing work.

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Photo of jayhawk73
4.33/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A- Pours a light golden color with a massive 4 finger white head. The head continues to grow slowly, and doesn't start going down for about 10 minutes. A tornado of carbonation, and amazing lacing. Fairly clear to see through, although it changes to a little cloudy by the end.

S- The nose on this beer changes drastically from the time you first pour it until it airs out a bit. Hops, grapefruit, malt, wheat, grass, spice, some honey are what I pick up. Super complex nose, and very balanced.

T- Somewhat more smooth and malty than the nose, and still incredibly complex. Very smooth caramel malt aftertaste. Really nice taste, it seems I get something different w/ every sip. Dry hops a little on the aftertaste as well.

M- Full bodied, malt/dry hop feel on the aftertaste. Possibly the weak point of this beer, although it's still really good. Somewhat carbonated as well, although I think this is a new bottle.

O- Overall, this is an excellent beer. Highly recommended. I will continue to enjoy this one. Cheers.

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Duvel Belgian Golden Ale from Brouwerij Duvel Moortgat NV
Beer rating: 4.25 out of 5 with 8,010 ratings
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