Gulden Draak | Brouwerij Van Steenberge N.V.

3,920 Ratings
Gulden DraakGulden Draak

Brewed by:
Brouwerij Van Steenberge N.V.

Style: Belgian Strong Dark Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 10.50%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
Dark Triple Ale brewed with caramel malt and re-fermented with Bordeaux wine yeast

Added by BeerAdvocate on 12-19-2001

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Ratings: 3,920 |  Reviews: 1,336
Photo of johnnydicfore
4.25/5  rDev +1.2%

Photo of deebo
4.23/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

The golden dragon picked up on recent trip to Belgium this beer by Van Steenberge is named after the gilded statue on top of the Gent Belfry.

A-Poured from that characteristic white plastic wrapped 330 ml bottle with a BB date 7/11/14 into a chalice. This is a heady beast...sticky, tan and big. Chestnut colored with some transparency.

S-Delicious aromas of ripe fruits, lightly toasted malt and fruity esters.

T-Upfront notes of clean barley malt, with plenty of Belgian estery yeast and ripe fruits. End note is of warming pleasant alcohol.

M-Big bodied but not overwhelming, the high carbonation carries this beer well. A nice warming finish.

O-Lots of flavor, a big time appearance, this beer is tasty and one to savor. I would best describe this as a Barleywine/Quad hybrid.

 785 characters

Photo of benoit917
4/5  rDev -4.8%

Photo of Ryanm1
4.9/5  rDev +16.7%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

I'd been wanting to try this beer for quite some time now. Was able to snag a 22oz. cage and cork from my local Foodery store. New it was a Belgian for which I have a penchant for and had high expectations.

This beer is classified as a Triple, but not the orthodox version, a dark triple. This was the first dark triple I've ever had. It poured dark brown cherry-ish much darker than a normal golden triple color. It was a violent pour which garnished an excessive amount of head.

The aroma eminaiting from the glass was a strong smell of cherry and dark fruit, of which when taking a sip both of these flavors are present. The mouthfeel is unlike any other beer. The amount of carbonation on the tongue was unreal. As I took a sipped I struggle to hold or feel the beer in liquid fashion before it turned to straight carbon dioxide. This was not a bad feel, but one of the best I have ever experienced. Was also chasing the liquid with my tounge when ingesting it. The only other beer that came close to this cabonation explosion would be St. Bernardus. There was a strong prescense of sweetness in the beer which I expect in a Triple made with Belgian Yeast. Great after taste lingering with a mild bitterness. Packs a punch at 10.5 abv.

I would consider this one of the best beers I've ever had!

 1,302 characters

Photo of IDontBelieveYou
3/5  rDev -28.6%

Photo of mrebeka
4/5  rDev -4.8%

Photo of bacasnax
4.75/5  rDev +13.1%

Photo of parintele
4.25/5  rDev +1.2%

Photo of Maurod4d
2.91/5  rDev -30.7%
look: 3 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

This beer was served into a goblet and poured from an 11.2 oz bottle.
The color was a rich amber not quite brown to my surprise, with a very thick foamy head.
On the nose I got tons of honey... Then with the taste I got tons of honey as well and that to me is where it went down hill.

In my opinion it was a much to sweet beer in an attempt to mask the high alcohol content.

None the less it was unlike any other beer I have ever tasted before in my life and was quite an experience and pleasure to taste this beer, just not up my alley as far as favorite tastes.

 565 characters

Photo of davelag
4.5/5  rDev +7.1%

Photo of sendbeer
4.25/5  rDev +1.2%

Photo of Glibber
4.5/5  rDev +7.1%

Photo of Foulon
4/5  rDev -4.8%

Photo of Dunlapah
4.75/5  rDev +13.1%

Photo of Scotchboy
3.68/5  rDev -12.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

11.2oz ceramic stubby bottle poured into my New Belgium Globe.

A: Dark murky brownish-prune color; creamy off-white head has decent retention & lace.

S: Sweet fruitiness, banana, some Belgian candy sugar, dates and figs, estery Belgian yeast, clove, funk. Faint earthy hops linger.

T: More fruitiness and sweetness, lots of malt and malt breadiness. Sugary, toffee. Belgian yeast notes and hints of spices linger with the suggestion of earthy hop bitterness. Small hint of alcohol - not too bad for 10% but noticeable.

MF: Pretty much medium bodied, with proper carbonation. Not particularly dry. Creamy tones.

O: The smell and flavors don't seem to work together for me. The fruitiness seems to lean more towards a Belgian Pale than a Belgian Dark. I didn't finish the entire bottle; that being said, I'm scoring '4' here to raise the overall score to a more adequate overall number.

 889 characters

Photo of devlishdamsel
4.5/5  rDev +7.1%

Photo of Mattyb79
4.5/5  rDev +7.1%

Photo of kevinthedriven
4.75/5  rDev +13.1%

Photo of JustABeerGuy
5/5  rDev +19%

Photo of st9647v3
4.5/5  rDev +7.1%

Photo of Scandoppelganger
4.5/5  rDev +7.1%

Photo of Rijtjeshuis
4.33/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Look (4.5/5) ~ Deep coppery with some really nice red and orange tones in it (the colour gives the impression of fullness and richness). Given the abv, the head was great: it was very moussy, and fell exceptionally slowly with some nice lacing. Towards the clear side of hazy.
Smell (4/5) ~ spot on for the style. Rich complex maltiness plays off of some really nice yeast notes with a subtle spicy and earth y hop presence. Malt is strongly of the Munich/Vienna type variety with some nice melanoidin notes (plums, prunes, dried apricots); there is also a faint smokiness to the nose. You get a lot of the fruity and floral notes that you’ expect from this style.
Taste (4.5/5) ~ very good. Maltiness was front and centre and the beer was malty-sweet in balance (though I’d still say it was in with the Trappist versions and not the very sweet Abbey ones). I get a whole lot of Munich/Vienna melanoidins and all the fruitiness they bring (plum, prune, dried apricot); but there was also a smoke – not burnt mind you – note that reminded me a bit of very fine tobacco, which I liked a lot. The finish, which would otherwise be sweet is gets a lot of spice and gentle alcohol to balance everything out well. Floral and fruity yeast notes round it out. Some very mild earthy hops and enough bitterness to achieve some nice balance.
Feel (4/5) ~ pretty much what you’d expect: relatively gentle carb and pretty heavy in terms of body. I’d describe it as achieving a pretty silky/velvety feel well.

I’ve had more a few of this style and I’d have to say that this is more of the most compelling versions. I really liked the complexity of the malts, especially with that cigar/tobacco note that was played up. I think the spiciness and bitterness were great foils for the otherwise overwhelming sweetness. Kudos to the brewers!

 1,838 characters

Photo of Scott_McCool
4.25/5  rDev +1.2%

Photo of HATS4BATS
4.4/5  rDev +4.8%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Complex and sharp. Pours deep copper red with ample, frothy head that delights. Restrained fresh citrus nose. This welterweight packs an acerbic, powerful, deeply-sugared malt bite that lingers, dissolving into alcohol-laced bitter, peppered finish that dissolves surprisingly quickly. Rewarding and sometimes overpowering, not for the faint of heart.

 351 characters

Gulden Draak from Brouwerij Van Steenberge N.V.
4.2 out of 5 based on 3,920 ratings.
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