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Duvel | Brouwerij Duvel Moortgat NV

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2,794 Reviews

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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Reviews: 2,794 | Ratings: 7,785
Photo of kkipple
4.58/5  rDev +7%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Any review of Duvel would be incomplete without first singing the praises of the head on this beer. The head on a glass of Duvel is massive, tremendous, and a joy to behold. It sits commandingly atop the clear golden beer and takes up nearly 2/3rds of the glass. The lacing is the best I’ve seen. It just may bring tears to your eyes. In all seriousness however, the thick, meringue-like head on this beer is just the icing on a very tasty cake.

The smell overflows from the glass. I was initial concerned by a mild skunk tang, but that is soon left behind by a wonderfully sweet floral smell, along with the Belgian yeast that's typical of these kinds of beers. The smell gets sweeter as the beer warms, eventually leaving a nectar scent in the glass.

The taste is light malts with a mild bitterness, with hops, yeast, and mild alcohol present. There's a lesser wonderful spicy clove taste and a fine tartness to round it off. Finishes dry, warming, and crisp. The 8.5%abv is cunningly hidden, and the sheer drinkability of this beer means if you have a steady supply at hand you could be in trouble.

Drinking a Duvel is delightful. I strongly recommend you seek one out.
It's just a fantastic beer and one that I can't wait to try again.

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Photo of Jredner
3.18/5  rDev -25.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Kinda a rauchbier aroma, but less pronounced, though still unexpected. Some maltiness. Pale golden in color. The head rioted in my glass. After calling in the authorities it settled down somewhat, but continued to stand around leering at me. Malt profile with some tickling alcohol and pear notes. Mild spice, but much less than many Belgian Strong Ales. Much ado about nothing it seems.

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Photo of Optimat0r
2.87/5  rDev -32.9%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 2 | overall: 3

appearance - i do as the bottle instructs(how i pour all my beers anyway), slowly pour about one ounce and have to stop because my glass almost foams over. takes about 3 minutes for the foam to go down so i can pour another once. color is almost water like with a small tint of yellow. so far it looks and pours just like a coors light. its very ironic how it recieved so many high marks for appearance while the same people would probably slam identical appearing beers such as coors light.

smell - like mainstream american crap beer, but with a slightly more sweet presence that lets you know it will probably taste better.

taste - it didnt taste much better. its like a slightly improved coors light, with a sweeter, fruity taste that becomes sour as soon as you swallow. not much depth or complexity at all. not much else to say, very disappointing.

mouthfeel - extreme carbonation makes for a thin, sour, unpleasant mouthfeel.

drinkability - i was all exited to try this one but i failed to finish my 11.2 oz bottle. for reasons listed above. tastes like something id drink out of a keg at a party.

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Photo of jabocu
4.58/5  rDev +7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Bottle poured into the oversized Duvel glass.

A - Golden and bright. It almost sparkled it was so clear. It had a thick sudsy head that had valleys in the top as it slowly dissipated. The etchings in the bottom of the Duvel glass created a constant uprising shower of bubbles to constantly replenish the cap.

S - Very clean and aromatic. The bouquet was a little above medium. I could get hints of apples, cloves and pear. Sweet and a little grainy. Couldn't wait to try this for the first time.

T - Crisp and refreshing. The sweetness of the apples and cloves were apparent right away. Floral hops had a perfect balance that brought everything together. The taste became even better as it began to warm up. Bananas and citrus became more apparent then.

M - Carbonation was just right. Nice little kick in the beginning that made everything come alive. The hops hang on in the back for the entire ride. The ABV is not noticeable at all, and felt smooth going down.

D - Excellent beer. I will be keeping this around from now on. This would be perfect for any occasion or sitting.

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Photo of Metalmonk
4.14/5  rDev -3.3%
look: 5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This beer scores big in appearance. The pale yellow body is home to sparkling, active carbonation. Walls of foamy lace ring the glass as the beer disappears. And look at that head...I've never described a head as "complex" before, but here you have it: fluffy and well-retained, it's always abundant no matter how slow the pour, with a stiffness around the middle that reminds of meringue. One of the best looking beers, ever.

The aroma is a bit low-key: definitely fresh-smelling, with a balanced lightness, nothing is really dominant, all the expected smells of the core ingredients, plus fresh apples.

Taste-wise, Duvel is always a great recommendation for those just starting to move away from macros and into craft beers. It's not extreme but not at all unremarkable. It recalls a malt-soaked apple peppered with cloves and banana, with a subtle alcohol/yeast nip.

Feels light and crisp in the mouth, with a good bit of banana-like creaminess. Nice zing to the carbonation.

Very versatile when paired with food...just enough alcohol content to relax with...not so much alcohol that you can't have 2 or 3 in a sitting. A classic.

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Photo of becktone
4.88/5  rDev +14%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

I won't be the first to say it but this beer has absoutely the best appearance I have ever seen. It ends up being a pale golden color.Infact the color reminds me of lemon jello shots. The large amount of carbonation in this beer makes it look quite alive. The head can be described with the following: four finger, billowly, pillow-like, whte, rocky/craggy. Not only does the head look great but it looks great the entire time one is drinking it, excellent head retention. Also a great amount of lacing, this looks like one good beer.

The aroma of this beer is also good. Not quite as potent as I would like (the more potent the aroma, the easier it is to describe it). Don't get me wrong, it's not like the aroma of this beer is hard to smell. It's just that if I could hold on to the smell a bit longer and have it be a bit stronger it would be much easier to describe. I get a butterscotch aroma from this beer. I also detect small amounts of diacetyl. I don't detect any hop character. It has a very distinct aroma, however, I can't seem to put a finger on it. It does however smell great.

The taste of this beer is great. It is very well rounded and complex. I can't really describe it much more than that. It has a sweet candy-like flavor that is balanced by just the right amount of hops. I also detect some spicyness in the flavor of this beer. This beer may contain 8.5% alcohol, but you surely can't tell by the way that it tastes.

Feels great in the mouth as well. It finishes dry and has a champagne character about it. The amount of carbonation is high, but I believe that it compliments the complex flavor and style very well. It is certainly not light on the palate, it has a pretty full body. In fact, this surprises me because in my experience pale ales in general don't have a full body. They are usually light-medium bodied, whereas this beer has a full body.

This beer is by far one of the best beers that I have ever drank. It has a great appearance and a taste that is quite good as well. This is a beer that I'll be buying again and again. It goes down incredibly easy espicially for having such a high abv. If you haven't tried this beer I highly recommend geting some of this next time you see it.

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

750ml bottle from AKSmokedPorter as part of Secret Santa 2005. Thanks for the opportunity. Corked and caged, with a date (not sure what it indicates, probably best by) of 13.08.06.

Poured into a Rapscallion glass, formed a 2 1/2" bright white head above the clear golden brew. Head lasts and lasts, with rejuvenation from lots of deep bubbling, with lots of hunky foam lacing. Aroma is sugar and spice and everything, well, you know. Taste is spicy sweetness also, with bready undertones. Mouthfeel is light and smooth over the tongue, and drinkability is very nice. Sweet could possibly get a tad cloying after awhile, but nonetheless, a classic.

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Photo of Jacobob10
4.41/5  rDev +3%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I can't believe it took me so long to try this classic beer. But now that I have there may be no turning back!

The appearance is one to remember. Golden, straw-like color with the fluffiest, most pillowy white head imaginable. The head seemed to explode right out of the bottle. Floral and citrus fruits make up the aroma. Mostly orange and lemon. The flavor brings out more of the the fruit and also has a spicy character to it. It matched perfectly with the meal I was eating at the time which I'll talk about in a minute. Big flavor that's easy on the palate. This beer really changes over time. It starts out crisp and spicy and as it warms, turns into a pleasant, mellow beauty.

I had this Duvel at a restauant paired with Alaskan black cod marinaded in mushroom soy and garlic served with a ginger-coconut sauce and sweet pepper salsa. The flavors matched up prefectly and really made this beer one to remember. Excellent!

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

A - A monsterous white head over a clear urine yellow beer. Thick carbonation bubbles intensely to keep the head lingering. Way too intense, it makes ginger ale look flat. After it finally reaches a manageable level, rings of lace are marked down the side.

S - Floral notes dominate over fainter white grape, pear and banana odors.

T - A strong ascerbic hop kick initially, not a pine flavor, but more of a floral flavor. A bit of faint white grape and pear in the taste. There is a light-bodied maltiness and a lingering hop bitterness in the aftertaste. Abv is completely masked.

M - Slick, smooth and very, very refreshing.

D - It is an excellent brew that is easy to drink. It could pair well with foods as well. Strong pales are not one of my favorite styles, but I do see why people love this beer.

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Photo of beerphilosopher
4.57/5  rDev +6.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Can't believe I had not reviewed this standard long before now ... oh well ...

Poured into a Duvel tulip-style goblet. Golden straw color, very crisp and clean, with a tremendous white head of epic proportions. The nose is of tropical fruits and candy. A gorgeous smelling ale. Tastes of malty sweetness up front, with strong fruity flavors behind ... and finishes with a much drier, clean taste in the mouth. Ample carbonation and a unique crispness. For me, a standard in the Belgian variety ... very, very drinkable and always enjoyable. Duvel is a reliable and regal ale.

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Photo of DarkerTheBetter
4.28/5  rDev 0%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

I poured this beer into an oversized Duvel tulip glass. That's 12 oz of beer into a 22 oz container and the snow white frothy head came right to the top. There’s a chaotic vortex of bubbles erupting from the bottom of my glass sustaining this mammoth head. As the head collapses, it leaves behind a meringue-like cratered head. Almost looks like some forgotten water-carved desert valley in AZ. As I drink this beer, the head collapses and leaves big awkward clumps of head hanging out on the surface. The color of the beer is soft honey. Truly one of the most visually entertaining beers I can ever imagine drinking. The smell consists of tangerines and plumbs, an enticing spicy yeast and what I can only describe as dark brown lake water. These smells are magnificently intertwined with each other that make this really unique. Tastes surprisingly bland compared to the smell, but far from bad. I’m getting some very dry grapefruit rind, black pepper and fruity orange jello with a medicinal, dry yeast finish. If I allow some air to stand trapped in my mouth, I pick up strawberries. I must add that this is the most prominent spicy yeast flavor I’ve had with out it being too dry. The mouth feel is medium bodied with a lot of unobtrusive carbonation that disappears when I swallow. This beer is surprisingly simple, but wonderfully put together and an absolute delight to watch.

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Photo of MagicLantern
4.09/5  rDev -4.4%
look: 5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured into a Pint Glass. I'll get a Duvel Glass soon.

Pouring this beer for the first time was amazing. The whole glass turned into a thick head. And I when say thick I mean like cool whip thick. It looked wonderful and gave me an immediate appetite. The head was long lasting, slow to fade, and laced the glass perfectly.
The lace was about 1/8" over the beer through out my entire sample. It did not fade, break up or go away. I covered my beer and the edges of the glass was something to admire.

The beer had a rich gold color with the color deepening as it neared the center. My notes say, "Translucent beauty."
A light carbonation bubbled through the entire beer and just made it look like what I imagine a beer is suppose to look like. For that reason I gave it a 5. Even in the wrong glass it was picture perfect.

Fruity, maybe banana. My notes are sparse here. I have written, "Didn't smell bad, didn't smell great. Smell is subtle and light." I think that's why I have it a lower rating. I just couldn't smell much.

Sharp! Bitter! Spicy! Yum! That's what I wrote and thats what I like. A crisp light burn follows from the carbonation which gives it a great aftertaste. I did not taste any sort of alchohol after taste. The flavors of this beer float in your mouth long after you drank it and it's a very pleasant feel in deed.

I want to point out that this beer got better as I let it warm. That is, it started great and finished better. With that in mind, it was smooth through and through.

I was going to give this a 4 for drinkiablity. It was a great beer that I could probably drink at anytime, but I didn't want to over rate. Then my girlfriend came along and she doesn't drink beer at all because it tastes "like beer". Maybe it was the note book, or maybe it was my crazed look, but she picked it up and said "Let me try a good beer." She tried it and said, "This is fantastic." This is the first beer my GF LIKES. That merits .5 doesn't it? So drinkability is a 4.5

Price: Reasonably priced the quality of beer. Buy yourself the four pack with the Duvel glass so you can drink this right. If you still not convinced accept the next one offered, you won't regret it.

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Photo of walleye
3.68/5  rDev -14%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

poured golden with a big soapy head. aroma yeast , citrus on the lemon side a hint of alcohol. flavor lemon, orange,light yeast and malts as it warmed got some sweetness.usually when the yeast and citrus are the 1st thing that hits my nose I get this feeling I am not going to like this beer but this one was good

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Photo of RedHaze
4.55/5  rDev +6.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Pours a pale golden color with a montainous rocky head that actually grew as it sat for a few minutes, and hardly fades away. There's tons of lacing left behind on my glass.

Smell; at first I was a little dispointed in the smell, as it came of more tame than I was expecting. I let it sit for a few and came back and it really opened up. It has a really nice lemony citrus and a spicy pepper like smell, with yeast and hints of bread dough.

Taste; that spiciness really jumps out at me, followed by citrus and a nice malty bread dough, with a bit of a grassy quality thrown in. There's enough of a hops to add just a touch of bitterness in the finish. I thought the carbonation would have more of a bite, instead it's really smooth and creamy, and very refreshing.

I had this beer many years ago, and didn't care much for it at the time, but now I have to say that this is one hell of a beer. I'm glad I gave it another chance after nearly eight years.

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Photo of Mebuzzard
4.28/5  rDev 0%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

didn't pour into snifter as represented on the bottle. Used pint glass.
What a head! Thick, foamy, white and didn't go anywhere (but in my belly!)
Good golden, yellow, rich glow in the glass.
Smell was sweet, malt, orange, flower, hops.
Taste was rich, and richer as it warmed, with a bit of salt at first, them malt and sweetness. Hops were present middle to end. Aftertaste lingered just enough to want more.
Could drink a few more. the appearance was the best part of this beer although the other components were impressive.

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Photo of Hautacam
4.65/5  rDev +8.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

I tried this with great anticipation and expectation.
Pours beautifully golden slighly cloudy with a huge head into the Duvel chalice...really, really huge...fun to watch it slowly recede with nice lacing and little sinkholes throughout ( I'm sure there's a better beer geek term for that,sorry ).

Smells nice..malt, yeast , slight fruit.

Taste at first was a little disappointing...first few sips.."what's all the fuss about this stuff ?"...way too carbonated for me , interfering with the flavor. Anyway, that sure changed....once it de-gased a bit and warmed just a little, the complexity came out...there's so much going on on the palate...I kept looking at the simple gold color and wondered where all this was coming from. There's fruit, malt, sweet, hops, alcohol.. and more...all well balanced....every flavor I love in Belgian goldens was there in just the right amount.
3/4 the way through this glass I had decided that this is just a perfect beer and deserves all the praise it gets.

Drinkable....I would have a few. I'd love to make this one of those that's always in the fridge, but it's a little too pricy for that.

I told a few friends about this..and a few weeks later they said they had almost exactly the same experience...although you may resist initially ; the Duvel gets your soul in the end.

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Photo of masikon
3.65/5  rDev -14.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Pours yellow with a thick, massive white head. Nose is light, fruity and airy with juicy pears and apples along with some slight alcohol pepper. Taste is fruity as well, juicy apple cider...yeasty banana and definitely some alcohol heat making it's way onto the palate for the finish. Mouthfeel is high on carbonation, a little too high for me. Overall this is certainly a tasty beer although for my tastes it desn't quite back up the hype.

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Photo of Prufrock
3.97/5  rDev -7.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

11.2 oz. bottle poured into a tulip.

hazy golden with an inch of foamy white head. very nice lacing.

sweet, yeasty aromas. slight citrus scents, but not hops; more a sweet lemony aroma.

lots of carbonation, lots of tart belgian yeast. a touch of fruity, floral sweetness, but overall a dry feel.

definitely the standard to which other belgian pales should be judged. balanced taste, clean finish, very drinkable.

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

Clear yellow-golden color that reminds me of apple juice. Mammoth, white, bubbly head takes up about half the glass. The head looks glued to the sides the way it's lacing. Lots of fine, champagne-like carbonation bubbles rising very rapidly.

Scent is very fruity. Pear, apple, and banana in particular. There's a caramel scent too. Smells pretty good, but I was expecting a little more.

Taste is more complex than the scent. There's the fruit (particularly apple) and caramel, but there's a spicyness too. I'm getting a slightly tart flavor too. Some grain-like flavors. Quite tasty.

Smooth and mellow as advertised. Mostly sweet, but with a refreshingly bitter finish. Feels very clean on the tongue. Light to medium bodied. Fairly well-balanced too. Pretty unique and almost refreshing really.

This is tasty. I'll have another and recommend it to my friends. The flavor does come off just a little too tart to be a mainstay for me.

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

pours wtih a billowy white head that is "get in the way" big. clear pale yellow appearance. leaves more lacing on the glass than there is on Shaquille Oneal's high top sneakers. aroma is grainy, alcohol, and apple sweet. taste is very sweet with a touch of bitter and a slight late bite in the back. mouthfeel is light and dry, amazingly so for such a strong brew.

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

11.2oz bottle

Pours a hazy golden straw with a MOUNTAIN of a white head. Thick lacing inside the glass.

Very crisp malty aroma with plenty of Belgian yeasty fruitiness woven in. Has a nice breadiness to it as well. The aroma of alcohol begins to show as it warms.

This is delicious. A nice crisp malt taste followed by a fantastic fruitiness. This leads into a nice bready flavor with some tasty noble hops and finishes quite dry.

Full body and plenty of carbonation.

Too drinkable for an 8.5 ABV. This is a fine beer.

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Photo of CDBeerDisappear
4.53/5  rDev +5.8%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

a - Clear golden color looks like a pilsner. Plenty of foam (in the same way that the ocean has plenty of water)

s - The unique smell is pleasant and addictive. I read a lot of reviews and found none that captured the aroma of this brew. Tht's no knock on anyone because I can't do it either. It smells like Duvel.

t - The first sip was nice but each sip cried for another. Yes, there was maltiness, alcohol and spicy sweetness. But it is so much more. I find the aroma and taste of this beer really hard to describe but I've been back to the beverage store several times just to get more of this one. It's unforgettable.

m - Loads of carbonation. Feels strong. Haven't tried it with any food yet, I like it too much by itself.

d - Could drink one after another.

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Photo of SacoDeToro
4.14/5  rDev -3.3%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

The beer poured a pale golden yellow with a huge white head that took quite a few minutes to settle.

The aroma was a wonderful bouquet of spicy Belgian yeast and fresh grainy malt.

The taste was warm and peppery with a smooth and moderate hop bitterness. The malt provided a creamy sweetness to balance out the spiciness and warmth from the high alcohol.

The mouthfeel was light considering the style and the carbonation was very high.

Many beers in this category have a tendency to be syrupy and cloyingly sweet. While Duvel is a "big beer" it manages to be complex and delicate at the same time. It is very drinkable and satisfyingly refreshing.

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Photo of scooter231
3.86/5  rDev -9.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

So the first time I tried this I was a little disappointed. It didn't live up to the hype as I thought it would. But, it's been quite a while- so I'm giving it another shot. Here goes...

Pours a slightly hazy golden straw-like color with miles of white poofy head that leaves lovely lacing around the glass. The head won't stop! It grows and grows! Smell is malty and peppery- makes my nose twitch a little, actually. Lemon, lots of lemon. Spicy.

Taste is also lemony with a strong maltyness dominating. Some juicy fruityness and a hint of bitterness at the end. It's tasty, but... pale? I think is the right word. It just doesn't impress me like it should- the big WOW isn't there- it's just not flavorful enough.

Mouthfeel is lively and bubbley, smooth, a bit chewy, and crisp. Clean feeling. Overall a very drinkable brew- not overwhelming, and certainly easy to drink considering it's alcohol content. But it just doesn't do it for me like I'd like it to. I'd take La Fin or Delirium Tremens over this any day.

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Photo of kbnooshay
4.08/5  rDev -4.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I have been waiting forever to try this! I shall not let stellar reviews affect my opinion. Really cool 11.2 ounce stubby brown bottle. Fancy label, printed on good paper. hiyooo. This poured a gorgous pale gold color that kinda looks like a wheat beer, nice and hazy. Cool linear specific carbonation and some trippy yeast spots floating within(hey I tried to be careful!). The head is amazingly rocky and white. Very airy. I tasted the head and got stung by pepperiness! The smell is nice and spicy, citrus is there. Alcohol smell not kicking my ass though. And not in the taste either. The alcohol kinda there but not too intense. Some good hop bitterness here. The mouthfeel is sharp and stingy. This is clean and drinkable. Wish i had a bigger bottle than this stubby stubby.

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Duvel from Brouwerij Duvel Moortgat NV
4.28 out of 5 based on 7,785 ratings.
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