BC Review's picture


Judges Rating: 
20 / 24
6 / 6
34 / 40
8 / 10
Overall Impression: 
16 / 20

Initially brewed in 1918 and fermented to this day with the original yeast strain, Duvel is a beer of incredible complexity, demanding a full three months to produce. Swirling with notes of bread, ripe pears, and spicy Czech hops, Duvel’s nose is distinctive and identifiable. Tom enjoyed the soft bready malt and ephemeral hints of clove, yet felt the nose initially lacked complexity. As the sample warmed, Tom also picked up a hint of caramel and notes of ginger. Big “citrus, lemon notes” and a medicinal tang grabbed Rick’s interest, while a faint solvent-like alcohol note increased as the beer opened up. He was impressed by the emerging notes of honey and lemon zest as the sample warmed, opining that the aroma “evolves nicely as the alcohol recedes.” Graced with a creamy, long lasting, meringue-like head, this beer has a clear golden radiance. Punctuated by fruity esters, reminiscent of Anjou pears and nectarines, the flavor is emphatically fruity, interwoven with bold notes of alcohol and a light acidity. Pete liked the “sweet, luscious peach” notes, but found the tart acidity clashed with the overall roundness on the palate. He thought the alcohol was well-integrated. Lee found the acidity “refreshing and a good counterpoint to the fruity sweetness,” and commented that while fairly high, the alcohol “lends complexity without overpowering.” Effervescent and pleasantly acidic, Duvel is sublime as an aperitif.