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Duvel Belgian Golden Ale | Brouwerij Duvel Moortgat NV

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Duvel Belgian Golden AleDuvel Belgian Golden Ale
BA SCORE
4.25/5
Outstanding
7,991 Ratings
Duvel Belgian Golden AleDuvel Belgian Golden Ale
BEER INFO

Brewed by:
Brouwerij Duvel Moortgat NV
Belgium
duvel.be

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

BEER STATS
Ranking:
#753
Reviews:
2,852
Ratings:
7,991
pDev:
11.53%
Bros Score:
4.75
 
 
Wants:
472
Gots:
1,646
Trade:
5
HISTOGRAM
 
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User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 7,991 |  Reviews: 2,852
Photo of billab914
4.23/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a 375ml bottle into a Rochefort chalice. Poured a cloudy light golden color with a fluffy white head covering the top. The head was long lasting and left excellent lacing on the glass as I drank it.

The aroma is dominated by the fruity, spicy Belgian yeast. It has some hints of apple, hops and a little alcohol coming through. The taste is also not surprisingly strong with the Belgian yeast flavors. It has a light, crisp, fruity flavor that is very nice.

Mouthfeel is medium bodied with a little above average carbonation. Drinkability is good, it's a very good tasting and easy drinking beer. Overall an excellent example of it's style and a delicious beer at that.

 685 characters

Photo of smithj4
4.5/5  rDev +5.9%

Photo of wethorseblanket
4.29/5  rDev +0.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Pours a slightly cloudy golden yellow with a decent 1-inch thick white head with fades to a thin cap and leaves spotty lace. Yeasty and floral with some faint spice notes. Overall solid.

 187 characters

Photo of atrocity
4/5  rDev -5.9%

Photo of nathanmiller
4/5  rDev -5.9%

Photo of Gkruszewski
4.72/5  rDev +11.1%

Photo of paulish
4.25/5  rDev 0%

Photo of smcolw
3.96/5  rDev -6.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Nearly all head (nearly pure white) on the initial pour. Light lace on the glass. The liquid has a mild haze. The color is light straw.

The aroma is as I remembered: lots of barnyard and musty, yeasty smells

Spritzy and spicy are the first impressions...like there is coriander and thyme in here. Strong yeast and wheat flavors. The body is moderate with a high level of carbonation. Deceptively easy to drink.

 412 characters

Photo of XmnwildX12
3.5/5  rDev -17.6%

Photo of mendvicdog
3.5/5  rDev -17.6%

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

750 ml bottle with a BBD of March 07

Pours straw colored with a slight chill haze & super fluffy 2 fingers+ white head. Says a little hazy, but throws a parfait-like head that retains superbly with insane lacing, couldn't figure out where my duvel glass was, had to make to with an a'chouffe glass; same-same!

S: Pears & apple skins, along some perfumy hop notes

T: Fruitty (dates& a little lemon& tangerine) with some dryness up front. Some peppery hop notes follow along with some breadyness. A slight warming alcohol presence is felt as much tasted. Finishes with a jammy fruittyness, earthy & lemony hops& a slight pepper edge

MF: medium bodied & slick with moderate carbonation

Drinks pretty easy for the abv. A nice Belgian pale, that probably has done more to define the style than any other offering, just because it its widespread availability. Either this or Palm was among the 1st Belgian ales I ever had. Oh, the memories!

 939 characters

Photo of ZEB89
4.25/5  rDev 0%

Photo of ChainGangGuy
3.96/5  rDev -6.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Appearance: Pours a clear, golden body with a tall, airy, cloud white head. Notable head retention and tons of fine, sticky lacing throughout.

Smell: Delicate malts with soft touches of clover honey. Mild floral and spice notes, along with fruity hints of pineapple and banana-flavored bubblegum. Lightly boozy, but it's a classy booziness, mind you.

Taste: Soft pale maltiness with a light honey sweetness. Splash of dessert wine. Bits of banana, chewing gum, and ripe pineapple. Slight sour yeastiness. Light floral and spicy Noble hop character and bitterness. Peppery alcohol, particularly on the otherwise drying, fruity finish.

Mouthfeel: Medium-plus body. Moderate carbonation. Very slight stickiness throughout.

Drinkability: Rather drinkable despite the 8.5% ABV. A respectable stalwart member of the classic Belgians.

 831 characters

Photo of woodychandler
4.19/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 3.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Wow! I feel ashamed that it has taken me until now to drink & review this venerable classic. 8=( In fact, the last time that I remember drinking it was during a field trip to BAL with Bob & Karen Hollman, Sheesh! That's gotta be close to a decade or more at this point in time.

From the stubby bottle (that will be rinsed & set aside for use as a Molotov cocktail shaker): "Belgian Golden Ale Bottle Conditioned"; "Patience - In Your Pour - Ness"; "If you've ever done something in a hurry, you know it often ends in disappointment - and sometimes a full body cast. So here's to an unhurried pour. Not only will it release Duvel's essential aromas, you can use the time to write a short poem: 'Pour slow there you go.' On second thought, no poetry, please."; "Share your #masterfulness ".

I Pop!ped the cap and went with a very gentle pour as directed. I know that it may be hard to believe, but I actually can follow directions. It is simply that I just choose NOT to do so. Even a gentle pour brought forth three-plus fingers of dense, foamy, rocky, bone-white head with good retention. The remaining lacing was spectacular. Color was a slightly hazy Straw-Yellow (SRM = > 2, < 4). Nose had a dry mustiness, like those old newspapers up in my grandmother's attic. I really do mean to bundle them up and put them out for recycling one of these days. Mouthfeel was medium-to-full with a pleasant effervescence on the tongue. The taste had a light tartness, like green apples. Boy, howdy, it is one dry beer! Phew! Just one sip later and I felt really parched. Man, I am all for dry beers, but this one is almost vinous, like a really dry white wine. Finish had a long, lingering dryness that led me to hear the zephyr winds blowing across the sands of the Sahara. And I still have half of the bottle yet to pour! Wow. Plus, I am doing a side-by-side today with their Tripel Hop Ale (Belgian IPA).

 1,901 characters

Photo of mdaschaf
4.21/5  rDev -0.9%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 330ml bottle, drink by date of 11/2012

A: Pours a hazy golden amber with a thick patchy head. There is some thick lacing down the side of the glass.

S: A definite yeast aroma with some spice and a faint lemon aroma and some green apple.

T: Definitely some yeast, and a really nice balance between the hops and malt. There is a floral aspect and also some banana.

M/D: Light bodied and extremely drinkable. A really good beer, something that would be a great with food. The 8.5% is slightly evident as it goes down, but it does not bother me one bit. I look forward to drinking another.

 605 characters

Photo of duceswild
4.25/5  rDev 0%

Photo of BuckeyeNation
4.88/5  rDev +14.8%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Effervescent Spanish doubloon gold beneath a massive alabaster head of frothily creamy foam. I don't have a Duvel glass, but I do have a flared-top snifter that is almost identical other than the decal. The cap retains a melty, bubbly, 'scoop of mousse' look as it falls and leaves a wonderful array of abstract patterned lace on all available surfaces. As I knew it would be, this is one gorgeous beer.

The nose is no slouch either. It's immensely golden fruity (apples and pears) with more than a little musky hoppiness and an equal amount of spicy yeastiness. BSPAs are similar to my favorite Belgian style (tripels) and this one is the equal of all but the very best of those. A wee whiff of alcohol adds strength of purpose.

At long last, the great Duvel has come into contact with my taste buds and I have to say that it's everything that I'd hoped it would be. It's amazing how such an aggressively flavored beer can be so light in the mouth, so gentle, so dreamily drinkable. I think that Brouwerij Duvel has it wrong when they recommend drinking this fine ale at 40-50 degrees. I started my bottle out at 50 and the flavor is becoming deeper and more complex as it warms.

The flavor profile is a nearly perfect combination of sweet and snappy pears, lemon zest and peppery-clovey yeast. Just when I think that one member of that trio is most dominant, the others catch up and overtake it. I'm stunned at how compulsively drinkable this beer is; my hand keeps reaching for the glass instead of recording my impressions. As with all great high ABV beer, alcohol is noticed on the palate, but is such an integral part of the whole that eliminating it would make for a lesser flavor experience.

There's too much flavor, too much underlying sweetness and too much glorious hoppy bitterness for the finish to be considered clean, but then I've always though that clean finishes were overrated. The final few ounces (which have come much sooner in this review than usual) are even more chock full of flavor and even more peppery, more tartly fruity, more noble hoppy and more delicious.

How do they make the body/mouthfeel so cumulus cloud light and airy, yet substantial enough to keep the beer in contact with the taste buds for so long? I got used to highly carbonated Belgian beer a while ago and now wouldn't have it any other way. This stuff is pure pleasure in the mouth and the angelic mouthfeel is a big reason why it's disappearing so devilishly fast.

I had a pretty good idea that I would like Duvel when I finally got around to trying it. I didn't realize, however, just how truly special it is. I don't know if 'it's a style unto itself' as the brewery claims, but it's certainly the best BSPA that I've ever had the pleasure to consume and is the new gold standard by which all others will now be judged.

 2,826 characters

Photo of drewone
3.5/5  rDev -17.6%

Photo of Jason
4.68/5  rDev +10.1%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

330 ml stubby brown bottle with a best before date of 09 2006. Quick tips on how to pour the beer as well as “Bottle Conditioned” on the label.

Appearance: A perfect amount of foamy head from a trained pour into the appropriate Duvel glass, the lace clings to the glass in patchy clumps. The clarity is great as the pouring went well and the yeast stayed in the glass. Very pale in colour, some would confuse this with a lager as far as the light golden hue.

Smell: Hints of apple skin (juicy fruit), clean alcohol and a slight yeast bite in the aroma.

Taste & Mouthfeel: Clean pale malt flavour throughout. Three big flashes of yeast, hop bitterness and alcohol hit the palate. Big cleansing crispness makes you want an other sip. A tad juicy in the middle, with a big warming alcohol landing middle to end. Mild medicinal phenols peak in the middle and nearly vanish as the alcohol takes over.

Notes: A top shelf brew, this one does it for me and then some. Pretty much sex in a bottle and the devil told me to drink it. Duvel is close to dry champagne but so much more. Between the bitterness and the sheer crispness, this beer is what I expect from the Belgian strong pale ale style.

 1,201 characters

Photo of mdfb79
3.92/5  rDev -7.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured from a 11.2 oz. bottle into a tulip.

a - Pours a pale golden color that is quite see through, with about 3 fingers of white foam and a lot of retention. Moderate carbonation.

s - Smells of bananas, citrusy hops, yeast, and hints of spice.

t - Tastes of citrusy hops, bready malts, and banana.

m - High carbonation and light body.

d - A decent belgian that is readily available in grocery stores. I would agree with others that this could be a good gateway beer for people looking to get into Belgians, but I don't think it is as good as some others I've had. Thought the high carbonation hurt it a little bit, but still a nice beer that I'd have again.

 664 characters

Photo of mikesgroove
4.16/5  rDev -2.1%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

So here, we have this wonderful brew. No believe it or not, with over 800 reviews I had never done one for this. I was shocked when I noticed this, but to be honest it had been a long time since I had last had a bottle, so I knew I was going to have to pick up another one to be able to review it properly, which is just what I did on the way home last night. Got this 750 ml bottle and took it right out of the cooler section, put it on ice and brought t it home. Served it at around 50 degrees and poured it into a Rodenbach chalice all night to finish this one off.

Appearance - Poured an extremely vibrant and bright straw colored yellow. Very clear, I mean very clear, one of the clearest beers I have seen. An absolutely enormous amount of carbonation on this one. In fact, when I popped the cork it damn near woke up my son. This was a seriously well-carbonated beverage if I have ever seen one. A huge white head, pretty much immeasurable formed across the top and spilled over the sides of the glass coating everything in huge frothy bubbles. This would not fade at all, and I mean at all. There was just a huge pillow like layer of foam across the top of this throughout the session, and it must have literally took close to seven pours before I could fit the whole bottle into glasses. It just would not give up. Huge side glass presentation, leaving sticky blobs of foam pretty much everywhere throughout the glass. The carbonation bubbles were streaming up from the bottom of the glass so quickly and in such abundance, if I did not know better I would have thought it was champagne. Overall, I was very impressed with the look of this one, I could see why people rave about it!

Smell - The aroma was very light and airy, and to be honest much fruitier then I thought it would be, which came as a bit of a shock at first. I had expected a strong grainy Belgian pale, but this was quite nice and light. Waves of light fruit and light grain came over me all at once. Hints of light pear aromas, mixed in with apples were now commonplace. A nice light alcohol smell mixing in and giving it a little bit of depth and letting you know this was quite a bit bigger then you thought it was. Very light cereal and earthy grains coming on now, and just a touch of something sour sitting off in the background, not too strong, just maybe a hint of grapes. Not bad overall, and much lighter then I would have thought.

Taste - The flavored followed along the taste perfectly. A wonderfully light mixture of soft bright fruit flavors that was layered on top of a light alcohol warming with ample amounts of fresh light grains thrown in. Hints of pears and apples were more then abundant here and were really showing off how well this was put together. A nice light cereal grain was the backbone, blended seamlessly with the yeast and a nice light grassy flavor. Some hints at a light sour grape were near the end of it. The finish was very quick and clean, but very dry. It was a weird champagne like dry if you know what I mean, just kinda leaving it all out there.

Mouthfeel - The feel on this was superb as well. Really one of the lightest, and definitely one of the most highly carbonated beverages I have ever had. A very nice blend of flavors really hid the alcohol well and I could have just kept on going with this one as it was just effortless.

Drinkability - As for a nice strong Belgian, this was about as sessionable as you can get. Light flavors were abundant here, really being very bright and expressive and allowing it to be refreshing at the same time that you could be exploratory with the flavors. Really quite well put together and I would have definitely had another when I was done.

Overall, I thought this was outstanding. Now is it worth the hype and the high rating, hard to say. Something does not get such a high ranking after almost 1200 reviews without having something going for it. Are there better ales out there, sure there are, but this is a classic, and will always be. If you are looking to introduce someone to the style this would work perfectly.

 4,089 characters

Photo of Zaphog
4.25/5  rDev 0%

Photo of Slatetank
4.75/5  rDev +11.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Thanks to bierman2000 - poured from two 11.2 oz brown stubby bottles w/ freshness dating of 10/2010 into my Caracole and La Fin du Monde tulips so I could enjoy both bottles at different temps.

Deceanted slowly as directed
A - A pristine golden w/ nonstop currrents of bubbles riding the liquid to the snow white head. The head is frothy and whipped w/ a gentle mousse-like smooth texture that is satiny visually under the light.

S - The aroma is both nutty w/ a subtle fruit element that is a yeasty ester w/ traces of Belgian funky character and the spice note is hinted at in the aroma.

M - The strong ale dances as it hits the tongue and with its highly carbonated essence spreads out w/ a dry texture that is preceded by a creamy quality in the feel. Mildly warming w/ a very faint sweet element and hop spiciness.

T - This ale's flavor is both dry w/ the hop and yeast notes rushing forward and a toasty grainy malt that fits perfectly when nestled whithin the other ingredients company. It tastes sweet and creamy w/ a hint of alcohol w/ a fruity tartness that only presents itself momentarily so more hops and spice can be noticed. The crisp malt keeps a central role in the flavor as a fonundation w/ a very pleasant dry malty and spicy blend of flavors. The warming boozy taste is gradually more noticeable, but barely. I found the fuit to be gentle, melon like in the taste w/ such condensed and focused, excellent clean notes in the flavor profile.

D - Very pleasant, legendary in the realm of 'Devil' beers. It took a lot less time to drink 22.4 oz than I would have imagined while reviewing. That is a nice quality considering it is 8% strength. I like the balance of subtle malt, hops and yeast that seems refreshing colder, yet more focused and less disjointed whe it opens up. The aroma and sweetness blossum at closer to 55 degrees and is more pleasant to my taste. A very fine compliment to my filet and asparagus, a second bottle seem mandatory practically.

 1,987 characters

Photo of orangesol
4.25/5  rDev 0%

Photo of atlbravsrno1
4/5  rDev -5.9%

Duvel Belgian Golden Ale from Brouwerij Duvel Moortgat NV
Beer rating: 4.25 out of 5 with 7,991 ratings
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