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Gulden Draak (Dark Triple) | Brouwerij Van Steenberge N.V.

YOUR RATING = None |
BA SCORE
94
outstanding
1,311 Reviews
Gulden Draak (Dark Triple)Gulden Draak (Dark Triple)
BEER INFO

Brewed by:
Brouwerij Van Steenberge N.V.
Belgium | website

Style: Belgian Strong Dark Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 10.50%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by BeerAdvocate on 12-19-2001

BEER STATS
Reviews:
1,311
Ratings:
3,790
Avg:
4.2
pDev:
19.52%
 
 
Wants:
292
Gots:
761
For Trade:
3
View: Beers | Events
User Reviews
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Reviews: 1,311 | Ratings: 3,790
Photo of Katahdin
4.7/5  rDev +11.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A unique Belgian style beer in that it is very dark and full bodied. Rich, creamy head that lingers in the glass and holds together well. The taste has a interesting blend of pepper and fruit. The richness and complexity of the pepper is balanced by the dried fruit taste that lingers longer than the peppery flavor. An easy beer to drink and a credit to the Belgian Tripel class. Highly recommend!

 398 characters

Photo of uawildcat
4.03/5  rDev -4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured into an oversized Bordeaux wine glass. Had a large head creamy head that fell quickly. Was a cloudy brown color.

Smell is extremely boozy. The first thing that hit me was the acetone-y alcohol smell. Behind that is a pleasant sweet malt smell.

Taste is much better than the smell. Tastes likes figs and maple syrup mixed together. The carbonation makes for a prickly drink. Hides the alcohol well.

Overall a good beer, worth trying once in awhile. Just too pricey.

 474 characters

Photo of Maudite
4.05/5  rDev -3.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A- Rich, thick, hazy, the color of toffee, breakfast tea, or figs. 3 fingers of deliciously thick nut brown head formed and wouldn't quit.

S- Spicy, rich warm maltiness, sweet, apples...dark rich fruits (figs, dates, raisins...), earthy dark bread. A slight butterscotchy diacetyl. A complex and warm nose.

T- Warming alcohol bite, caramel, toasty grains, bread, dark fruits, spiced cake...almost like a brandy.

M- Acidic, bright, warm. Sticky and sweet in the mouth, quite lingering, subtle hop spice on the finish.

D- Very delicious apéritif. A strong drink, so hard to recommend more than one, but perhaps something worth keeping on hand for when the occasion arises.

 677 characters

Photo of MLegendre
3.78/5  rDev -10%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A: Deep red, slightly hazy, little visible carbonation. Formed a 1/2in white head that disapeared pretty quickly leaving a thin skin on the top. Slight lacing.

S: Slightly yeasty but not too strong, some dark fruit smells as well as a hint of alcohol.

T: Yeasty in the begining and sweet. Becomes sweater while alcohol makes an appearence. ALcohol is decently hidden and only in the background.

M: High carbonation. alcohol on burns a little bit.

D: I'm just now starting to get into the belgian style beers, and I think this was a good start, definatly something I'd get again.

 593 characters

Photo of wampahoofus
4.6/5  rDev +9.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Appearance: Dark amber with about an inch of cream colored head. Some lacing that fades in a few minutes.

Smell: The sweet esters dominate the smell. Fruity and full of aroma.

Taste: Ah. Lots of fruity esters with this wonderful caramel malt backbone shining through. Very little bitterness.

Mouthfeel: The well rounded malts linger on the palette.

Drinkability: for a beer of this strength, it is scary how drinkable it is. You could sip these all night. However, I would not make it past two.

 500 characters

Photo of LOCAL
3.8/5  rDev -9.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

330ml into wine goblet

Appearance: Pours a dark brown/ruby red with a half inch of light tan head which disappears quickly.

Aroma: Big on ripe fruit, apple, plum.

Taste: A Golden Delicious Apple taste comes through real stong, followed by raisin, brown sugar and yeast. Alcohol is very well hidden.

Mouthfeel: Medium bodied, smooth and creamy. Well carbonated.

Overall: Easy to drink, well balanced. Could have a few of these, but the ABV could prevent having too many.

 474 characters

Photo of talkinghatrack
4.35/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

On draft at Ginger Man, from notes.

a - nice burgundy. Clear, no head.

s - Belgian yeast, bananas. Some alcohol.

t - nice tangy and sweet. Solid ABV mask.

m - medium body, nice carbonation.

d - tangyness balances ABV. Smooth. Some alcohol on finish but we're talking 10.5% here. Good stuff.

 295 characters

Photo of pinkano
3.97/5  rDev -5.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A - dark little hazy amber with nice head
S - very sweet smell of dark fruits, jam, caramel, malt and apples
T - sweet taste, which mixes with dark fruits (plums, figs, dates), coffee, malt, yeast with nice long end.
M - medium to full body with medium to low carbonation
D - drinkable, but very heavy and full and also strong, so be carefull

 342 characters

Photo of mickstepp
3.9/5  rDev -7.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

I was lucky enough to find this on tap at Teller's in Hyde Park. Served in an authentic Gulden Draak tulip glass. Dark brown/amber pour with a nice frothy head. Spicy nutmeg aromas. Silky mouthfeel. Light malt profile. Lightly hopped. Very yeasty and bready. The taste of the high alcohol is muted by the spicy malty notes. Very nicely balanced. A good beer.

 358 characters

Photo of BeerHonky
4.42/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

750ml bottle, corked and caged. Poured into my small Piraat goblet. Pours a wonderful shade of brown with nice ruby highlights hidden within. Big fluffly white head that dissipated to a nice glass coating lace. BIG hints of dark fruit here particularly raisins and dates soaked in a bit of alcohol. Underneath that I found a faint, buttery malt sweetness aroma. This beer smells really big! To my surprise, it did not taste very big...meaning that it hid its palatable alcohol pretty well. On top of the raisiny flavor I also got a nice refreshing apple taste. Also present is a subtle caramel malt backbone with little bits of butterscotch here and there. This is super tastey. Normally I'd think carbonation would be weird in a beer like this, but the bubbles are very smooth and enhance the creamy mouthfeel which leaves behind a pleasant sweetness that is not sticky. And finally, this beer will kick you to the curb if you're not careful...it hides the booze extremely well.

 979 characters

Photo of MrBen
4.85/5  rDev +15.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

I picked up a bottle of this fine stuff a few days ago. I was pleased to find an opaque bottle, but what was inside was far more impressive. Gulden Draak poured nicely and kept a head between 1/8-1/4" all the way to the bottom of the glass. The beer's color was very appealing and the smell invited curiousity. The tastes were a bit surprising at first, and frankly, at 10.5%, I wasn't sure what awaited.

Anyway, the flavors were big, round, and complex. Lots of floral notes with some candy in there and maybe a tiny hint of pink peppercorns (try a whole pink peppercorn on its own -- it's nothing like black pepper), and just everything sweet in between. The mouthfeel pretty much made the experience for me. The beer was thick, not chewy necessarily, but I could almost sense the presence of two viscosities or thicknesses in there. Very exciting. The beer left a very light coating in my mouth that quickly dissolved between sips, and the aftertaste was probably the most pleasant I'd ever had -- and long lasting.

I agree with other reviews that this beer may be best enjoyed after a big meal, as a dessert. While I don't think its big flavor would detract from a good steak or grilled burger, I do believe that the mix just might not fit too well. I strongly recommend Gulden Draak to anyone -- both the newcomers to Belgians and the guys who are knee deep in the rich traditions. What a fantastic beer.

 1,415 characters

Photo of audiojon
3.91/5  rDev -6.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A solid brew, the 10.5% abv is not noticeable at all. Nice appearance, dark ruby w/ beautiful lacing. Aroma is good, not great, but inviting. Taste is solid, but nothing shocking. Not extremely complex, I've come to expect more from Belgians than this has to offer. I'd drink it again, but would probably gravitate towards other Belgians when given a choice.

Worth a try, I could see it being a favorite for some.

 416 characters

Photo of minnesotaryan
4.16/5  rDev -1%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Appearance: Pours a deep dark amber with a lot of cream colored foam on top of it.

Smell: Sweet dark fruit, yeast and alcohol.

Taste: Caramel malt, dark cherry, the yeast provides some spice, very sweet, very complex, a nice alcohol burn is ever present.

Mouthfeel: medium mouth feel, not too heavy and not too thin. It lingers but not in a bad way.

Overall: This is a wonderfully complex beer, very much a sipper. I do not think I could drink these every day, but when the opportunity arises, this is a great beer for sharing with friends.

 544 characters

Photo of Blindpigbiz
3.77/5  rDev -10.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Smell: clean spring water

Taste: bitter hops with a rich, herbal, malty sweetness that carries throughout; subtle toasted walnuts pervade during each sip

This is one of the funkiest tripels Belgium has produced. Normally tripels have either a clementine, orange, or at least another citrus fruit within the flavor of the beer, but with the golden dragon not a one. This beer caught me off guard and I'm down to try it soon. By the way, This beer goes very well with an Italian sub with heavy mayo and oil

 506 characters

Photo of DPJ3322
4.51/5  rDev +7.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.75

Poured into a snifter to enjoy this guy.

Appearance - I had no idea what the color would be, I expected a trippel for some reason, came out rich but not dark brown, very pretty. However, the head bubbled away very fast.

Smell - Boozy initially in the smell followed by a very subtle and nice fruit sweetness.

Taste - Boozy up front again, I get hints of fruit and raisins followed by a kind of muted sweetness, with apples lingering on my tongue for the aftertaste. Very complex and subtle, I like it.

Mouthfeel - Heavy carbonated fizz up front and it gets kind of viscous as it sits on the tongue.

Overall - I really like this beer and I am savoring my bottle, it was well worth the money spent on it. I like the complex layering present in taste, smell and mouthfeel. Once again, a great beer, very European.

 816 characters

Photo of martinpfal
4.63/5  rDev +10.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.75

Have had this one I the past and not sure why I haven't rated it.....until now.
Look is dark brown Amber. Plenty of head that dies quick. Smell is bready/boozy. Medium body with yes some sweety maltiness which I generally don't like but it completely makes this beer and knocks it out of the park. A delicious Belgian that even at 5.99 a bottle is still one I'll continue to buy.

 383 characters

Photo of Rocko
3.65/5  rDev -13.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Nice and foamy head with big bubbles that settles fast on the copper colored liquid. Leaves a little lace on top. Big and fruity smell that reminds me of raisins. The taste is very rich, sweet and fruity. However I think the taste is a bit too sticky sweetish and it reminds me alot of sherry. :l

 296 characters

Photo of greg202stewart
3.85/5  rDev -8.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

For the price I was expecting more. It was dark brown with little head and came out like liquid caramel. It went down smooth unfortunately, like caramel it was way too sweet and reminded me of a Sam Adams Seasonal. It is very unique though. Just not my bag baby!

 262 characters

Photo of Torps
3.9/5  rDev -7.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Pours a dark plum with two finger off white head.. some lacing.. aroma is dark fruits, candi sugar, prunes, spices and yeast.. taste is super sweet and heavy.. lots of dark fruit, dates, black cherry, spices and boozy alcohol. Mouthfeel is pretty good with plenty of carbonation to combat the sweetness. Drinkability is okay. Its a bit too boozy and sweet to drink more than one.

 379 characters

Photo of wjimson
4.07/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Opened and poured the 330ml bottle dated best before 08/06/07. Slighly dark brown colour with lots of head. The smell is of sweet wheat with a light trace of alcohol. The initial taste is of a sugar like sweetness. This is followed by plunge of slightly smokey raisiny taste. The aftertaste is slightly bitter and quite tart, a tartness similar to the white layer of Brie cheese. The alcohol taste is well camouflaged, but its definately there. I wished I hadn't knew that this beer had 10.5% alcohol content before I tried it.

 527 characters

Photo of Elendinn
4.24/5  rDev +1%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Poured into my tulip glass.

Pours a cloudy, dark, earthy brown, suffused with a subtle crimson, with two-and-a-half fingers of off-white head, which leaves a bit of sticky lacing that hangs around for about half the glass -- aesthetically pleasing and rather foreboding.

The nose is sweeter than I'd expected, with lots of dark fruit (cherries feature rather prominently) beneath a huge aroma of molasses, caramel, alcohol, some chocolate, and bread. Smells a bit like freshly baked cookies and hard liquor -- very enticing.

Again, lots of molasses and caramel, a bit of milk chocolate, some mildly-tart dark fruits (reiteration of cherries), and bread are featured predominantly, in rough chronological order, on the tongue. The alcohol is a bit overbearing (reminiscent of Irish whiskey); combined with the yeasty doughyness, the finish is substantially drier than the front-end. The flavors begin to meld more cohesively as the glass warms, becoming progressively more balanced. What's most intriguing is the beer's similarity to a barleywine, but with a Belgian twang.

The first thing I notice upon letting this beer sit in my mouth is the carbonation, which, in a word, is excessive; additionally, the body is a bit chewy. It's difficult to hold for very long and it burns a little on the way down. The mouthfeel is an unfortunate distraction from an otherwise very good beer. Luckily, the carbonation becomes less exhuberant and more tolerable as the glass warms.

Gulden Draak is a delicious beer, but a slow starter, and an even slower sipper. I would recommend letting it warm up a bit before partaking with any sort of diligence. The noticeable alcohol and aggressive effervescence make it a difficult beer to drink more than one of, but it definitely grows on you. It reminds me of Hair of the Dog's Adam, with a little more complexity, a lot more carbonation, and a slightly heftier price tag (though both are great values). Bottom-line: it's strong and a little scary, but I'll get it again.

 2,008 characters

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

Heck of a lot of head on this one! Beautiful amber/brown color and a slightly spicy aroma. The spiciness continues from the front of the tongue to the back of the throat and the flavor sticks with you for a while without changing into an odd aftertaste. I think 'warming' is the best way to describe how it feels in the mouth. This is a beer to be enjoyed slowly in front of a hot fire.

 386 characters

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

Deep brown in color with ruby highlights.

I detected lemon, raisin, and spiciness. Some alcohol as it warms more.

fruity malt esters with a peppery dry finish leaving hints of biscuit in the mouth

This is dangerously drinkable for such a potent bere. Full bodied and smooth, with just the gentlest of warming sensations from the alcohol.

 343 characters

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

Poured into an oversized wine glass producing two fingers worth of light brown head. It looked a dark brown color that turned more reddish along the edges. Aroma of dark fruits, sweetness and a little alcohol. Had a funney taste to it up front that wasn't too appealing almost like body odor but after that the slightly sweet fruits like figs and grapes kicked in. Had a nice feel to it, not too much carbonation and alcohol wasn't too noticeable.

 447 characters

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

The golden dragon does live up to its rep. Beautiful bright copper/red. Good nose you can tell its going to be rich.Pour slowly cause this beer gives you a nice head no matter how you pour it.Rich and malty taste,slight toffee and sweetness.Nice balance,great for dessert.

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Gulden Draak (Dark Triple) from Brouwerij Van Steenberge N.V.
94 out of 100 based on 1,311 ratings.
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