Duvel Belgian Golden Ale | Brouwerij Duvel Moortgat NV

7,945 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: 7,945 |  Reviews: 2,841
Photo of mudbug
4.53/5  rDev +5.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Poured a slightly hazy yellow with what can only be described as the poster child of heads, chunky, fluffy white.
Aroma is like a fresh washed apple and fresh bread, Oh ya!
Taste is complex but light malts, some bitterness and clean crisp yeast, a pleasure on all fronts.
I'll be drinking this one again and again.

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

Appearance - Pale golden colour, plenty of little bubbles form a slight head that didn't last very long

Taste - very crisp, no aftertaste

I have to say that considering all the rave reviews for this beer, I was expecting a better experience. The first time I tried this beer, I thought it was good, but not mind blowing. I continued to read reviews of this beer and they were all sterling. So I figured maybe I got an old batch of beer or something. Tried it again last night and I think the beer is a good beer, but it is not the holy grail of beer that many make it out to be. This is a good tasting beer, highly carbonated and virtually no aftertaste, but there are beers I've tried where I had a much better experience with.

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

330ml bottle into Duvel tulip. Best by date: July 2012.

Appearance: Careful pour yields a one inch fizzy and pillowy white head (which crackles audibly). Color is translucent golden yellow with numerous bubbles rising up in the middle. Both the head and the beer leave a lot of bubbly lacing all over the glass.

Smell: Apple, Belgian yeast, and a bit of funk. The smell grows and changes as the beer warms and the smell interacts with the flavor (apple drops off, replaced by other fruits); I get notes of lemon, green grapes, banana, etc. Big, pleasing Belgian yeast smell doesn't let up.

Taste: First sip is an explosion of sweet and subtle esters giving way to a strong, funky Belgian yeastiness and a crisp, clean finish. On the next, a stinging tartness emerges and transforms into a smooth banana note. The tartness is mildly lemony, and a little soapy. It sticks around along with the yeast as a dominant and constant aspect of the flavor. Alcohol warmth gradually present at the end. The taste up front is various esters; banana, plum, berries, etc, always sweet but not candy sweet. The lightly sweet fruits develop and change, but are always there; they're never dominated away by bitterness or tartness, even though they're different with each sip. Aftertaste is like fresh white bread/potato bread.

The complexity of a great quad with lighter flavors. One of those rare beers the depth of whose taste can't be plumbed before the glass is empty.

Mouthfeel: Juicy and creamy, with lots of carbonation. Eventually starts to finish a bit warm. Body is light but not thin, if that makes sense; the carbonation and creaminess give it a lot of substance, but it's still very light and smooth.

Drinkability: If I could only choose 10 beers to drink for the rest of my life (maybe even 5), this would be on the list without a second thought.

Duvel is a classic beer. I've loved it for years, having tried it early on in my foray into craft beer. No matter how much my palate develops, Duvel keeps delivering new and delicious flavors with every sip. World class.

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Photo of Dijeriduster
4.11/5  rDev -4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

A- What can be said that hasn't before? Beautiful clear beer with tons of head. Love the glass too - well worth having as part of the collection

S- Quite pilnery ie lots of yeasty smells with an undertone of sour lager.

T - Wonderfully clear palate on the first sip. Some phenolic tastes in the middle, but subtle and appropriate somehow. As it warms you get a little more of the malt character - it would make sense that the pale is steamed to add to even more colour.

M - Lots of carb present lending an ease - but this is deceptively full. Just look at how the head never leaves! Exceptional mouthfeel

D - High. Great cross over for the Bud drinker who doesn't think beer can be anything else. This is a winner for sure. Maybe not as venerable as its usually portrayed - but still world class and unlike anything else.

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Photo of ujsplace
4.36/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured into (what else?) a Duvel tulip glass.

Beautiful looking brew. Enormous white head with plenty of lacing resting atop the pale white-golden liquid.

Smells of sweet yeasty breads and fruits

Taste is mild sweet malts and bready yeasts, maybe apple or white grape fruits, with a nicely balanced, subtle bitter hop finish. The alcohol is very well hidden.

Big carbonation and light/medium mouthfeel, crisp and quenching.

Delicious...this brew is always a great idea. In spite of the abv, I could easily session this like a mo-fo...

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Photo of NYCWheatFanSC
4.06/5  rDev -5.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A - Pours a clear banana gold with a white head that never recedes. Doesn't just stay for a long time, but literally NEVER fades. Lots of lacing and perpetual bubbling throughout. If I didn't think that some chemical was causing the head retention this would doubtlessly be a five.

S - Not too much here, a little bland. Strong yeast character, with a bit of spice and perhaps hints of lemon and banana. Definitely yeast forward, if detrimentally so.

T - Again, very yeast forward. Some wheat and citrus notes, but definitely a yeast-centered brew. A sort of weird, phenolic aftertaste at first, but that goes away some the farther you get in. Sort of like an estery solvent at times, but tastes better than that sounds coming out.

M - Neither too thin nor too thick. Spot on.

D - Very sessionable, could go through a few pints quite happily.

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Photo of Lerxst
4.01/5  rDev -6.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A-Pours a pale crystal clear yellow with a gentle pour producing a huge billowy white head that lasts forever and leaves tons of sticky lacing. This is one great looking beer!

S-Nose is not particularly distinctive, but I'm picking up some fruit and yeast and thats about it.

T-Very crisp taste of light fruit/citrus, malt and spice. Its not terribly complex but it is good.

M-Crisp, dry, light body. A bit of a sting from the carb, but it suits the beer well. Very clean finish.

D-Very drinkable beer. Several of these in a sitting is certainly doable.

Overall, this is a very good beer. But of course, you knew that already.

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Photo of cpetrone84
4.48/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

A-pours a clear straw colored golden liquid that has a ton of bubles flowing through it. a gentle pour produces a ton of a thinner pure white head that doesn't want to leave...ever! it leaves a huge sticky lace all over the glass when it finally does inch its way down.

S-the nose is lighter but still detectable. it brings some light notes of yeast with some sweet lighter fruits. sour apple and white grapes. a touch of pale malt towards the finish.

T/M-the taste follows the nose only bigger! it brings a hint of yeasty goodness (and i don't typically like yeasty flavors) with some great sweetness. a hit of sour apple with lots of fermented white grapes. a touch of pale malt in the middle. highly carbonated giving it a crisp feel but so smooth on the palate, almost creamy. dry at the back to accompany that crisp finish.

D-this is super tasty, like drinking a dry champaign only better. a little sweeter without the huge carbonation (although there is a lot) that a champaign would bring. really happy with this and this is another beer that makes me want to enjoy belgians!

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Photo of NiceHead
4.8/5  rDev +12.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

By far one of the most "dangerous" beers I've had. High gravity and superbly drinkable. A lovely golden color invites you in. The bouquet draws you nearer still. And then in a flash, the Devil's got you. You resist pounding this extremely drinkiable beer, knowing the potential consequences. But the pull is just too much to bear. Before you know it you're on number 4, and by then...it's too late.

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Photo of BradLikesBrew
4.56/5  rDev +6.5%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Finally getting around to this classic Belgian ale.

A hazy yellow body rests beneath a monstrous white head.
Pour unhurriedly is quite right.

The aroma is that of a mild Pilsner. Hay, flowers, grass; a suggestion of sweetness. The seemingly benign appearance and aroma portray it as just another soft, delicate, inviting beer. What a con, Devil indeed.

Toasted malt, a touch of malt sweetness, flowers, pear, apple skin, and pepper. Yeast, hop bitterness and alcohol on the finish. A perfect balance of sweet, tart, and spiced flavors.

Bone dry, crisp, smooth. This devilish beer demands that you take a sip and then another and another...

Fuck Highlife, this is the champagne of beers.

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Photo of fff
4.16/5  rDev -2.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Poured into a goblet.

A: Light gold with a very frothy head which laces all the way down. Not what I expected from a beer the same color as Miller Lite.

S: Somewhat dirty/metallic smell, other than that it smells like wheat and malts.

T: Exceptional taste. It's light and lager-ish, but with a great balance of carbonation and a good alcohol taste as well. Surprisingly good.

M: The light, airy tastes are complemented by the fizzy, thin mouthfeel.

D: Fairly sessionable, but it will catch up with you quickly.

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Photo of obywan59
4.63/5  rDev +8.2%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

330ml stubby.

I'd been eyeing the Duvel gift boxes for a month. Finally, last week I decided to snag the last one. I'm sure it must have been marked down, as the gift box was only a buck-fifty more than the Duvel stubby 4-pack. So now I have the famous Duvel glass--awesome!

Not being able to read the fine print on the label, I gave it my normal hard pour and ended up with 2 fingers of brew and a chunky, foamy-white head towering over the copious tulip glass. It took a few minutes, but I was soon able to get the rest of the beer in the glass. Easilly one of the most glorious heads ever. The golden "Duvel" lettering backed by the white head matched almost perfectly the color of the brew. The beer itself was tramslucent and light gold in color. As it receded, patches of foamy white lacing adorned the glass and a lump of foam (it looked like a Duvel float) rested on the brew being fed by a smoky tower of bubbles. One of the coolest looking beers ever.

A bit horsey from the Belgian yeast. Lemony. Peppery. A little apple. One single whiff of peppery watercress. Some sweet malt as well.

Some light lemony sweetness in the taste with a decently bitter finish.

Great mouthfeel. Somewhat drying with a light tingling on the tongue from the carbonation. Some burn from the alcohol which continues as a warming in the throat.

Quite easy to drink for a Belgian. Nicely warming for the winter, yet light enough to be a good summer brew. Two stubbys and I'm feeling good.

It's really hard for me not to pour all my beer knto the glass, but someday, I'll sample this again, and try to leave the yeast in the bottle.

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Photo of boogyman
3.26/5  rDev -23.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

A- Poured into my tulip glass a clear golden color with a big billowy 3 finger white head. Bubbles constantly refuel the great head.

S- Light banana and some yeastiness. Very fresh smelling in my opinion.

T- Light grapes and banana has a strange light boozy hoppyness. Aftertaste is kind of bitter and sticks on the tongue for a long time.

M- Goes down smooth but you can tell there is tons of carbonation going in with it. Whats really scary is it doesn't seem to make you burp much to begin with but you can feel the pressure building up. This one would give you a stomach ache if you didn't belch often enough.

D- Well I am a novice when it comes to golden ales of this caliber and I would say I enjoyed drinking this brew but I think it could of done better masking the 8.5% ABV. I couldn't seem myself having more then one or two of these before I got sick of it or from it.

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Photo of TCHopCraver
4.5/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Served into an oversized wine glass (boy, I wish I had the proper Duvel tulip...). Love the advice on the label to "pour unhurriedly."

A: Pours a clear gold with a GIANT fluffy head. That's about as big as it gets. Some great, sticky lacing covers the sides of the glass. The tiny carbonation bubbles are racing from the bottom of the glass upward as if to say "I can't wait to get in your mouth!" Don't worry, tiny bubbles, you soon will.

S: Yeasty, fruity freshness with a bit of a peppery spice thrown in there for good measure. Just a great, crisp bouquet. There is some sort of poetic juxtaposition between how crisp and clean the smell is and how clumpy and sticky the head is. I'll let the scholars figure that one out. This is an intriguing beer to be sure. Let's drink some.

T: Wow. That has a lot going on. I can really taste each component ingredient in clear waves. First, the bready yeast takes center stage, followed by the sweet, fruity pale malts, then finished off by the dry, spicy hops. I really appreciate how well-crafted this is.

M: Very enjoyable. A nice, crisp feel that starts medium-robust and bready and ends very dry and clean.

D: Excellent, based on the overall lightness of the mouthfeel, the full flavor, and the clean finish. I could certainly have a couple of these. The abv is sneaky, though. I certainly felt the 8.5% by the end of my tasting.

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Photo of matt20102
4.92/5  rDev +15%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

What else is there to say about Duvel? It's just about the most perfect beer on the market. It pours with an instantaneous, thick white head over a golden body. The aroma is distinct and smells of flowers, wheat and subtle hops; the flavor is smooth with notes of wheat, honey, and hops. The overriding distinction of this beer, though, is that there is no way to tell that it is 8.5% until you've finished the bottle! It is warming, smooth, pleasurable beer that I will enjoy again!

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Photo of herman77
4.34/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

White creamy head that is about an inch thick. Great head retention. I only gave it a 3.5 for smell since I can't really pick up any smell other then faint malty sweetness/bitterness. I probably should have let this one warm up a little more before pouring it. Taste is bitter and a little sweet at the same time. The finish has a sort of dryness effect at the end. A little on the carbonated side as well. Awesome drinkability. I could drink this stuff all the time. I can't believe the ABV is 8.5%. You will never be able to tell its this strong. Tastes like it should be 5%.

One of the best visually appealing ales I have ever seen/drank. This is the last of my 4 pack and the first time I have tried it before. It is a little spendy for what it is in my opinion. A must try if you have not have it before. Worthy of the hype I have heard. Possibly a perfect "beer" for a non beer connoisseur.

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Photo of Hopfist
4.38/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Clean, crisp, golden, boozy, awesome. Everyone's going to rant and rave about how good it is, so my accolades won't add anything here. Instead I'll play the role of the French judge at every olympic contest. The ethanol profile is a tad like nail polish remover. The malt profile is a bit boring. But all in all, impossible to argue against it's being a contender for the podium. We all know this event will end with the Belgian national anthem, but the question remains; "which Belgian?".

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Photo of 05Harley
4.03/5  rDev -5.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Best before 07/2011 L0821 16:06

Purchased @ Johnson's Market Place, New Durham NH

Price - $8.99/bomber

corked & caged, COOL..

Appearance: Pours a hazey golden color with champagne like suds. The head retention is there along with some artistic lines on the glass. Lacing, oh yeah.

Smell: The nose is spice,hops and lemon. Very fesh aroma.

Taste: A bitter pepper taste with some funk in the backround. I'm picking up a hint of banana in there as well with hop bitterness rounding it out.

Mouthfeel: A crisp clean effervescent experience with a dry finish. A little too ambitious with the carbonation IMO.

Drinkability: I prefer it more during the summer time. The alcohol is well hidden. At 8.5% it definitely deserves a bit of caution.

I appreciate it as a refreshing beer during the summer months, but for me personally it's over carbonated. That being said, it's still a more than worthy interpretation of the style.

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Photo of AlexLMS
4.78/5  rDev +11.7%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Appearance: good clarity (no floating yeast) with a light golden colour. The head is white, huge, full and creamy. Excellent retention followed by lots of beautiful lacings.
Aroma: very nice sweet malts aroma, spices and fruits (mainly citrus).
Taste: confirms the aroma with sweet malts, spices, herbal hops, citrus and alcohol presence.
Mouthfeel: smooth and creamy, high carbonation and a full body. Warming, well disguised high alcoholic strength.
Finish: lingering mixture of sweet and bitter aftertaste.

Overall: fantastic beer. One of the top ten beers of the world.

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Photo of icetraxx
3.87/5  rDev -9.6%
look: 5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A: The first two glasses I poured out of the bottle were crystal clear golden colors, the last looked more like a Witbier as it was slightly hazy from the bottle conditioning yeast. I had to pour slowly due to massive creamy head formation. The head fades in spots and doesn't in others, making it look like melted marshmallows are floating in the beer. This is by far the best lacing beer I've ever had. My empty glass is filled with tons of bubbling foam and lace, it looks like my glass was once filled with whipped cream. Amazing.

S: A bit of honey (due to the fact this Duvel was aged and the hops settled down and made a honey-like aroma), noble hops, sweet malty grain, and belgian yeast (little funk though). Unfortunately the aroma isn't very powerful, even with the higher ABV acting as a vehicle for aroma.

T: I originally thought this tasted too much like a Pilsner, but I have warmed up to it quite nicely by my second glass. There is a tinge of skunk in the particular bottle I am drinking, which really worried me, but it has settled down nicely with some decanting. This beer has a slightly sweet edge, but not too sweet. The sweetness is mildly balanced by hop bitterness, and a slightly spicy/yeasty element. The Belgian yeast is very conservative in this one, which is very disappointing. No tartness and no funk. Crisp, clean, and refined.

Complexity seems to be lacking, possibly due to age. Age has definitely added a honey-like edge, but the hop fruitiness seems to be completely lost. Drink this one fresher.

M: Super creamy for the light color. Mixing in the yeast even adds better mouthfeel.

D: Very easy to drink for the high ABV, yet I can't see myself having too many due to a lack of complexity.

O: I prefer the beer with the yeast mixed in. I have had Belgian-style brews that I have enjoyed quite a bit more for the money; this is a solid beer, even so, I have yet to be a fan of Belgian-style Pale Ales. Serve this one at a higher temperature (55 degrees F) in order to get the most flavor out of it as possible.

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Photo of hobojon
4.35/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Tasted on 9-2-09. 33cL in an AVBC snifter.

Aroma- lots of pear. floral hops. clean, sweet pils malt. spicy hops.

App- big white foam, laces. very clear. very pale yellow. very light in color.

Taste- tart, dry pear. very fruity and white wine like. refreshing and easy to drink. clean peppery spice. bready, soft pils malt. noble, spicy herbal hop bitterness and flavor. a hybrid triple and euro lager...

Mouth- very high carb. very dry. clean and crisp.

Overall- very clean and drinkable. not very unique except for fruitiness.

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Photo of MrHassellYaHurd
4.42/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

ETA: This is a review of a Duvel that I have been aging for a little over a year.

Pours into a Duvel glass a beautiful and slightly cloudy golden-yellow (yeast added) with the signature billowy Belgian head and tons of carbonation racing up the walls of the glass.

Smells of heavy malts and bakery fresh bread initially on the intake. Hints of sour green apple tartness as well as a gentle alcoholic sweetness.

I taste tons of fruitiness: green apples as well as lemon peels and grapefruit. A crisp cracker malty-graininess leads to a very champagne like lingering aftertaste carries the only hint of alcohol.

The duvel has a refreshingly light-medium velvet-like body with tremendous carbonation which in no small way make this a deceivingly drinkable big Belgian beer!

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

As good as a beer can be, this one is...

A – Bold bright golden hue, with stratospheric, cumulus-cloud head, boulders of lacing. It is truly a beautiful thing.

S – The aroma is sublime; banana, apple and assorted ripe fruity esters, with a clean grainy malt, and lightly spicy, peppery hops.

T – It has such a bright, outstanding taste, in many ways quite similar to Champagne, both in its subtle complexity and its bright, effervescent body. I detect sweet and tart white grape, peach and apple, initially. It is followed by the hearty grain and lighty bitter hop flavors that are the hallmark of Euro lagers, while retaining the subtle fruity funk. Tart pear and slight alcohol round out the finish.

M – A large part of the experience; the sharpness of carbonation enhances and highlights the outstanding dynamics of the variously intertwined flavors.

D – This beer is a masterpiece. Especially if poured properly, in the right ware.

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Photo of Midway
3.83/5  rDev -10.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Appearance - No smoke, very little lacing, very creamy looking head, the ale itself was a hazy/musty golden colour.

Smell - Slighty sweet, Strongish and very slighty bitterish.

Taste - Bitter and Strong.

Mouthfeel - Very carbonated, light.

Drinkability - Ok consumption, nice ale, would have again.

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Photo of BeerMasterD
3.81/5  rDev -11%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured from a stubby little brown bottle into an oversized wine glass. Poured slightly cloudy that looked wavy and actually really freakin cool(poured it wrong?) Large fluff/foamy brilliant white head that didnt last all that long but looked great. Was hard for me to get the aroma, light fruit, grape? Tasted slight alchohol, white grapes, like a good champagne to me. Lots of carbonation and light feel that gets slighty heavier and warming and dry at the end. I tend to compare this too delirium tremens, very similar however crisper and less fruit flavor going on here. I feel like you could pour this as an alternative to a good champagne and most wouldnt know the difference. Definitely a drinkable beer but the ABV would keep me having only a few spaced out. Ill most likely get the proper duvel glassware and get this again.

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Duvel Belgian Golden Ale from Brouwerij Duvel Moortgat NV
4.28 out of 5 based on 7,945 ratings.
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