Gulden Draak | Brouwerij Van Steenberge N.V.

BA SCORE
93
outstanding
3,952 Ratings
Gulden DraakGulden Draak
BEER INFO

Brewed by:
Brouwerij Van Steenberge N.V.
Belgium
vansteenberge.com

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

BEER STATS
Ratings:
3,952
Reviews:
1,344
Avg:
4.2
pDev:
11.43%
 
 
Wants:
313
Gots:
875
For Trade:
4
View: Beers | Events
User Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Alström Bros
Ratings: 3,952 |  Reviews: 1,344
Photo of mattboyer182
4.19/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.25

Photo of kkmiller76
4.09/5  rDev -2.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of jjayjaye
4.3/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours rich tea color with reddish hues and a small loose light tan head that recedes quickly, but is kept alive by small surface pools of visible effervescence. Spotty lacing observed. The smell is sweet, dark fruits and yeast. Medium-light bodied, the mouth feel is conditioned by tiny little bubbles that lend an overall smooth and creamy character. Full flavored, the taste is mush the same as the aroma. The 10.5 is extremely well hidden...i would have never guessed that it weighed out that heavy. Really glad that i had the opportunity to try this one.

 558 characters

Photo of bschinelli
4.25/5  rDev +1.2%

Photo of ommegangpbr
4.32/5  rDev +2.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On first sip I can tell I'm going to enjoy the life of this bottle of beer. This is pretty much spot on for what I want and expect from a strong Belgian dark ale. Head and lacing for days, light having a hard time getting through the color of this brew. I've seen prettier colors regarding the style but I'm not complaining.
Smell has depths of yeast and dark sugars. Homebrew and bread.
I don't mind this at all when on the colder side of the temperature scale but it really opens up when warmer. Dark, fermented fruits, mostly in a prune and raisin way. Black cherries are in there. An edge of roasted bitterness is there but mostly you get a tasty fruitcake type of thing.
When my finances allow this beer will be a regular part of my beer rotation. As it stands it will make for an enjoyable time to time treat. Smooth and tasty.

 835 characters

Photo of Jason1337
4.25/5  rDev +1.2%

Photo of pjkelley82
4/5  rDev -4.8%

Photo of n2pux
4.25/5  rDev +1.2%

Photo of kevgod
4.25/5  rDev +1.2%

Photo of sammyg832
4.75/5  rDev +13.1%

Photo of Johnct
4.4/5  rDev +4.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.25

Photo of brureview
4.28/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured a light chocolate color with a 2F head in a tulip glass.

The aroma: light vanilla, chocolate and very spicy with a strong clove presence. The clove is different than other beers in the style.

The mouth feel is very carbonated and transitions well to the taste.

The taste is exceptionally complex: spice, chocolate, clove and a strong alcoholic finish. The chocolate is more prominent with warming.

Overall a great beer- especially for the cold winter months.

 469 characters

Photo of Foley67
4.73/5  rDev +12.6%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

Photo of Naerhu
4.12/5  rDev -1.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

An annoyingly large tan head on a completely opaque body.
Spicy dark bread aroma fills the room upon opening. A little pastry sugar and molases and a herbaceous hoppyness as well.

Long lasting dark sugar flavor, though not a sweet beer. Bitterness on the back of the tongue is outstanding. Caramel maltiness.

The bitterness, though appreciated is also a bit rough.

This is an enjoyable beer. I cannot imagine why I would ever buy one again, though. I mean it does not go with food, and if we are thinking of an after dinner drink, then port wine or barley wine has my vote.

 585 characters

Photo of CityofBals
3/5  rDev -28.6%

Photo of soulgrowl
4.32/5  rDev +2.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance: A blend of coffee and root beer with a smooth, beige head that retains well. Excellent, Swiss cheese-like lacing.

Smell: Very fruity, full of banana and strawberry, plus chocolate and nutty malts. Almost like a sundae!

Taste: Excellent. Starts with coffee, then segues into banana and chocolate, and ends with roasted hazelnuts and a vodka-like alcohol flavor. Sweet and brown sugary, especially towards the end. Very complex and well balanced.

Mouthfeel: Tingly yet chewy with a slight alcohol burn on the way down.

Drinkability: A tad heavy, and the elevated ABV is somewhat prohibitive, but besides that this is very drinkable.

 654 characters

Photo of VashonGuy
4.4/5  rDev +4.8%

I've had this beer on tap in Ghent, from a bottle at home, and this time on tap in Boise Idaho. I loved it every time, although never more than the first time in Ghent. The beer is the local favorite there, and is named after the symbol of the town, the golden dragon that sits atop their city hall. When we did our Belgium/Netherlands beer trip, this beer was our favorite of all the beers we had.

It's a wonderful Belgian strong dark ale. I don't have a lot to add to the many excellent descriptions that others have given.

 534 characters

Photo of TheDoctor
4.26/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 4.75 | smell: 3 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A:
Pours a fairly cloudy amber-honey color with a big three fingers of tan head (intense carbonation overflowed immediately on opening it) that settles like a frothy honeycomb to a couple inches of perfection. Great retention; nice thorough lacing. Fantabulous!

S:
Pretty flat chalky yeast smell. Some sweet notes and bubblegum, but barely there.

T:
Round and warm with some nuttier flavors at the beginning settling into fruity tastes and a slight lingering aftertaste of dark fruits. Nuts, chocolate, cherries, candi sugar, deliciousness.

M:
Rich and full-bodied with great carbonation and a creamy, soft texture that makes it a very enjoyable beer to drink.

O:
Fabulous beer.
This is a fine looking (both in the bottle and in the glass) and fine tasting brew that should not be missed. The only off thing that I found was the nose. I tried repeatedly but could not detect much of an aroma to speak of. I'm not even congested, so who knows. Anyway, it doesn't much matter because the flavors, feel, and looks of the beer more than make up for it.
Will have again without a doubt; worth clamoring to get ahold of.

 1,119 characters

Photo of TwelveOunces
4.25/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

11.2 poured into a snifter

A- Pours almost black. It is a murky dark brown/red with some light around the edges. A massive three finger off white thick head.

S- Belgian yeast. Caramel, toffee. Dark fruits like raisins and grape. Some alcohol. A slight spicyness.

T- A huge beer. This a massive carbonation and some alcohol sting up front. It follows up with a lot of caramel and a very creamy malt profile. There is some alcohol taste in here but it helps cut the other flavors. A big dark fruit profile. Raisins, figs, a lot of spices. A beast of a Tripel.

M- This a big one. Massive carbonation up front. A lot of alcohol in here, very warming. Has a very pleasant feel to it and is quite creamy.

O- This is a monster of a beer. I think with time it may lose some of the alcohol and really let the dark fruits pop out. Awesome stuff.

 842 characters

Photo of kornkid8600
4.5/5  rDev +7.1%

Photo of lonewolfcry
4.25/5  rDev +1.2%

Photo of Theogre83
4/5  rDev -4.8%

Photo of hypnotoad1
4/5  rDev -4.8%

Photo of AKBelgianBeast
4/5  rDev -4.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This beer i suspect will get better with age. It pours looking like a dubbel, and is kind of a mix between dubbel and trippel. It pours dark brown with a thin white head. smells like a strong ale, but doesnt taste like one. at first it feels and tastes like a dubbel in the mouth as the carbonation is more flat than most trippels but more abrasive than most belgian strong dubbels. an interesting and certainly good beer but i found it a bit watery by belgian standards and for its color. But nothing to snuff at. I bet it will be delectable with three or four years of cellar time. abv is hidden well

 602 characters

Photo of ortie
4.25/5  rDev +1.2%

Gulden Draak from Brouwerij Van Steenberge N.V.
4.2 out of 5 based on 3,952 ratings.
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