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98
style
Brewed by Brouwerij Van Steenberge
Style: Belgian Strong Ale
Ertvelde, Belgium

bottled
common

on tap
common

Broad Distribution

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RATINGS: 2190   WEIGHTED AVG: 3.8   EST. CALORIES: 315   ABV: 10.5%
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COMMERCIAL DESCRIPTION
Gulden Draak is a high fermentation beer with secondary fermentation. For the secondary fermentation, wine yeast is used. The white bottle, the black banner, the golden dragon and the red letters, constitute a stylish result that has no equal among the many Belgian special beers. Gulden Draak can be drunk as an aperitif or dessert, or whenever you have the time to sit back and relax. But this barley wine is also perfect with and in stews, especially the Ghent variety. It is also a plus in sauces for red meat, such as a bordelaise. It is particularly suited as a dessert beer, especially in combination with dark chocolate.


3.5
   AROMA 6/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 14/20
Hansen (6207) - Assentoft, DENMARK - JUL 3, 2004
Dark, amber. Fine head. Lots of caramel in the flavor. Something spicy in the aroma and flavor. Warming to drink, lots of alcohol.

3.2
   AROMA 6/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 13/20
lachesis (756) - St Idesbald, BELGIUM - JUL 3, 2004
Dark brown ale with cloudyness and a small ivorylike colored head.Rich,sweet aroma’s with hints off dried fruits and roasted malts.The taste off this heavy brown beer is also rich and fullbodied with hints off caramel,dried plums and hops.In the afthertaste, the taste off alcohol too high.

4
   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 16/20
whaleman (2178) - North Wales, Pennsylvania, USA - JUL 1, 2004
Soft velvety beige head and ruby-brown body with moderate carbonation. Nice distinct aroma of molasses, smoke, and raisins. Flavor of dark fruit and leather with chocolate and cherry notes. Nice bitterness in the finish. Rich, full bodied palate. Very nice beer.

4
   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 16/20
Walt (2449) - Austin, Texas, USA - JUL 1, 2004
UPDATED: APR 27, 2006 I was not impressed by this beer...mild chocolate/toffee nose...malty almost like prunes or raisins in flavor...strong alcohol finish. A little less alcohol might make this a little more palatable.

Update: The above was for a fresh bottle that may very well have been off...this 2001 one pours the same, notes of serious toffee and dates in the nose and hints at oxidation...the taste is sweet with lots of doughy pumpernickel character and sweet toffee...finish is a little sticky and has definate oxidation...much better than the previous bottle...I have changed my rating from a 3.4 to a 4.0.

4
   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 9/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 16/20
zach8270 (3219) - Henrietta, New York, USA - JUN 28, 2004
UPDATED: DEC 10, 2008 [bottle - Great European Beerfest 8, Sharp Edge Tavern - East Liberty, PA] Poured a dark brown color with a thin tan head. Very complex aroma. Yeast and sweet malts, possibly toffee, various fruits and some biscuity flavors as well. The taste is just as complex. The sweetness of the malts and the fruits blends nicely with the biscuity hints and the hops. Hides the alcohol well with a very creamy finish.

3.7
   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 15/20
matta (1140) - Tampa, Florida, USA - JUN 28, 2004
From the Van Steenberge Sampler 6 pack.

Not a brew that is going to be very memorable for me... It was good, but also lacking intrigue.
Pours a dark amber body and a quickly diminishing tan head. The aroma and flavor bring a wallop of caramel and toffee malts. It seems like there is a big dose of criminalized sugars. Dark fruits are also evident: plumes, dates, pears, apricots… yeasty toasted wheat bread is also noted.. some black peppercorn spicyness in the finish.
So… what to say… I’ll drink it again.. maybe age a bottle to see if I can pull more complexity in a few months!

3.8
   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 16/20
badgerben (4362) - Blaine, Minnesota, USA - JUN 25, 2004
This was a break in the norm during Belgian night. Dark brown/ruby red color with little head. Aroma very malty, toffee, alcohol. Taste increased those along with some bitterness, yeast, bread, and some spice. More pronounced than others I had tasted this night. The mouthfeel was quite thick as well.

2.9
   AROMA 4/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 6/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 13/20
robertsreality (2460) - Minnesota, USA - JUN 25, 2004
Had too many strong ales at this point, but if tipsy memory serves...Brown Coloring...ruby/red as well... Head that won’t die...not as bad as delirium though... I’ll go with the plums/raisins...not real bad..but nothing distinctive.

2.5
   AROMA 5/10   APPEARANCE 5/5   TASTE 4/10   PALATE 2/5   OVERALL 9/20
Hugh (153) - Zillebeke, BELGIUM - JUN 25, 2004
Dark Brown? Amber yellow? You look at these ratings and wonder if the brewery uses the white bottles to hide the fact that they put any old beer in the bottles.Mine looked like Rochefort 10.There the similarity ends. Instead of a full body of properly aged malts, candy sugar is used to affect the body of a matured beer. This is a typical cheap shortcut of the sort found in Kasteelbier and the like which to me is a betrayal of Belgian brewing tradition.

3.4
   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 6/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 13/20
rlgk (9492) - Göteborg/Jönköping, SWEDEN - JUN 24, 2004
Amber/yellow, with a beige head. Aroma is malty and fruity from pineapples. Maybe some sweet chocolate in it as well. Flavor is strong, malt. Its easy to tell that this is a strong bbeer, even if most of the alcohol is hidden. Maybe it would be better with a little less ABV.


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