Ovila Abbey Barrel Aged Dubbel - Sierra Nevada Brewing Co.

Not Rated.
Ovila Abbey Barrel Aged DubbelOvila Abbey Barrel Aged Dubbel

Educational use only; do not reuse.
very good

33 Reviews
no score

(Send Samples)
Reviews: 33
Hads: 113
Avg: 4.03
pDev: 17.62%
Wants: 23
Gots: 21 | FT: 1
Brewed by:
Sierra Nevada Brewing Co. visit their website
California, United States

Style | ABV
Dubbel |  8.50% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: mdfb79 on 09-27-2012

This Abbey Dubbel was aged in a blend of red wine and bourbon barrels to add a new level of complexity to an already beguiling brew. Rich malt flavors of burnt sugar and caramel blend seamlessly with bright fruit notes from the wine barrels, while the bourbon oak lends a mellow hint of vanilla.
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters
first ← prev | 1-25 | 26-50  | nextlast
Reviews: 33 | Hads: 113
Photo of Pencible
4.06/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.25

A: This poured a nearly opaque dark mahogany with rocky light tan head.
S: It smelled like earthy pumpernickel and dry dark fruit, with some oak and spicy Belgian yeast.
T: It tasted like earthy honey wheat bread and nutty biscuit, with some oak and raisin and sour Belgian yeast. It had a clean earthy and sweet aftertaste.
M: It was watery with lots of fine natural carbonation. Nice slick body.
D: This was a nice brew, with subtle and complex scent and taste. The body was a little weak, but the finish was really smooth with well hidden alcohol, so it was easy to drink. Should age well, but doesn't need it. Yum!

 618 characters

Photo of Gmann
4.04/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Pours a dark Amber color with a short dense khaki head that settled into a light ring.

The aroma is sweet and fruity. I pick up the wine barrel on the nose. Nice fruity aroma almost grape juice like. Perhaps some caramel notes and fig but those would be subtle.

The taste is of plum, dark cherry and fig. A light pepper and clove spice. Nice subtle wine barrel note, again brings some grape juice notes. The bourbon barrel brings toasted caramel and vanilla. Not a lot of bourbon flavors but it smooths out the beer. Excellent example of of dubbel

The feel is light to moderate with fizzy carbonation. Sweet on the palate but not overly so. A bit sticky in the finish.

I dig the flavor in this beer. The wine barrel works well with a dubbel. Just the right amount of dark fruit notes and sweetness. Good yeast presence.

 828 characters

Photo of stortore
4.17/5  rDev +3.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

750 ml bottle into a chalice.

Pours a hazy, deep garnet color. Small head, small ring of foam clings throughout. Smell brings plenty of malt, wine, grapes, plums, oak, some bourbon as it warms. Taste also leads with the malt and wine, plums, figs, more bourbon than the nose, dates, caramel, oak, touch of vanilla. Little bit of alcohol taste. Smooth, creamy for the style, nice level of carbonation. A touch thin feeling.

Really like this. Both the wine and bourbon barrels had a solid presence, but were restrained, allowing the style to come through. Well blended, very enjoyable.

 595 characters

Photo of mschrei
4.26/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Dark. Big head and carbonation at the beginning but mellows out big time. Slightly sweet and mouth filling. Barrel aging gives it a mellow warmth underneath. Warms up nicely. Tasty and enjoyable.

 195 characters

Photo of polloenfuego
4.06/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A very nice dubbel with a very strong barrel presence on both the nose and the taste. I found this beer got much better as it warmed. Very little carbonation was present, and the feel full and sweet.

An enjoyable sipper.

 224 characters

Photo of richj1970
3.99/5  rDev -1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Poured from 750 ml into Old Guardian glass.

A: Reddish brown with one finger light tan head that settles to a thin ring and moderate lacing.

S: Tons of dark fruits - raisin, plum, fig, and dates. Subtle oak and vanilla.

T: Belgian yeast, plum, figs, and dates. Slightly sweet but well controlled.

M: Full bodied and light carbonation. Finish is a touch sweet.

O: Very nice beer. I just wish the price point was better.

 433 characters

Photo of BEERchitect
3.67/5  rDev -8.9%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

With the tethers of bourbon barrel flavors pulling the flavors of Ovila Dubbel even tighter and tighter, a beautiful array of flavor tantalize the tastebuds and seduce the senses in a unique Belgo-American kind of way.

Deep and russet brown, the beer's chestnut and mahogany hues shed a creamy yet short foam cap and simmers with rich maple, dark dried fruit, pepeprcorn and booze-soaked wood. To taste, the beer is lavish with residual sweetness, slathering the palate with caramel, toffee, butter pecan and maple.

Then the middle opens up and the sweetness evenly coats the mouth as the fruit and spice come out to play. Date, fig, raison, cherry, apple and apricot all seem dried and leathered, stewing in its earthen broth. Counter to the fruit and malt are the yeasty spices who carry a spicy tinge of fresh-cracked peppercorn, mild clove and oak tannin and an unmistakable bourbon jolt.

Holding onto its sweetness, the malts resist fade as the carbonaiton turns from an initial zesty nature to creamy, candied feel. Seemingly somewhat barleywine-like, the forefront of fruit and spice distinguishes it a Belgian. Yet the ale finishes malty-dry with caldering warmth and a pleasant prickle of peppercorn with an aftertaste of peanut skins.

 1,247 characters

Photo of superspak
4.3/5  rDev +6.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

750 ml bottle into chalice; bottled on 6/18/2015. Pours crystal clear deep ruby red/brownish color with a 1 finger dense tan head with good retention, that reduces to a thin cap that lingers. Light spotty soapy lacing clings around the glass, with a fair amount of streaming carbonation retaining the cap. Aromas of raisin, plum, fig, pear, apple, red wine, caramel, brown sugar, toast, brown bread, nuttiness, light chocolate, vanilla, bourbon, oak, pepper, clove, and yeast/toasted earthiness. Damn nice aromas with great balance and complexity of fruity/spicy yeast, dark/bready malt, and bourbon/wine barrel notes; with good strength. Taste of big raisin, plum, fig, pear, apple, red wine, caramel, brown sugar, toast, brown bread, nuttiness, light chocolate, vanilla, bourbon, oak, pepper, clove, and yeast/toasted earthiness. Moderate amount of earthy yeast and bourbon/oak spiciness on the finish; with lingering notes of raisin, plum, pear, apple, red wine, caramel, brown sugar, brown bread, nuttiness, vanilla, bourbon, oak, and yeast/toasted earthiness on the finish for a good bit. Fantastic complexity, robustness, and balance of fruity/spicy yeast, dark/bready malt, and wine/bourbon barrel flavors; with an awesome malt/yeast balance and zero cloying flavors after the finish. Medium carbonation and medium-full bodied; with a very smooth, moderately creamy/bready, and slightly slick mouthfeel that is great. Alcohol is very well hidden with minimal warmth lingering after the finish. Overall this is a fantastic barrel aged dubbel style! All around awesome complexity, robustness, and balance of fruity/spicy yeast, dark/bready malt, and wine/bourbon barrel flavors; and very smooth and easy to sip on for the ABV. A highly enjoyable offering.

 1,760 characters

Photo of BEERMILER12
4.09/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Pours a dark ruby/mahogany color with 2 fingers of head that fades down to a thin cap

S: Belgian yeast, dark fruits, moderate spice, caramel, a bit of a vinous touch from the wine barrels, and some light sweetness from the bourbon barrels. Hints of oak and vanilla in there as well

T: Starts off with the dark fruits, oak and vanilla from the bourbon barrels, vinous notes from the wine barrels, and some spiciness from the yeast. Goes into some moderate sweetness from the caramel maltiness and burnt sugar as well as more general fruitiness from the wine. Finishes with lingering oak, spices, and burnt sugar

M: Medium-full bodied with moderate carbonation

O: A very nice take on a dubbel, with a solid base and great barrel additions. It's hard to pick out which barrel shines more, but both do a very good job at imparting themselves onto the base. If you're a fan of Belgian brews or looking for something a little different, don't let the $17 scare you away

 970 characters

Photo of Jnarowe
4.25/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Light aroma of candi sugar, malts. Solid dubbel with some heat and traces of cabernet on the finish. A little more complex than the average dubbel, but well balanced and enjoyable. Tasted @ 60F.

 194 characters

Photo of Atatum
4.26/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.25

L: pours a nice tan head that lasts very shortly. A thin lacy head sits as the drink warms. A very dark orange body. N: licorice, brandy, dark fruit, molasses, leather. A very beautiful nose! T: a dry, alcohol dust taste. Tastes a lot like a good brandy, quite syrupy and has a nice malt balance. Burnt sugar and thick molasses taste. Overall: the barrel aging adds a touch of dry flavors but does not contribute to the flavor like one would assume. No real woodiness, just a little extra brandy flavor. Overall a very tasty brew.

 531 characters

Photo of russpowell
3.49/5  rDev -13.4%
look: 2.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours an effervescent chestnut with a sliver of cream colored head. Viscous look, minimal lacing or head retention

S: Plums & Bourbon barrel

T: Plums, raisins, figs, a little oakyness, dryness up front. A little boozey, plums & not much else as this warms, some leafy & aged hops as well, woodiness as well. Finishes dry, a little plummy with caramel & faint boozeyness

MF: Medium body with lively carbonation, a little sticky, warming, carbonation slacks a bit once warm

Alright, but was hoping for more

 511 characters

Photo of Catracho5
4.33/5  rDev +7.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

750 ml bottle poured into Ovila Abbey Ales goblet

A: Brown with a tan colored head that disappeared pretty quick. Some decent amount of carbonation, little lacing, light comes through when held up, looks cloudy.

A: Belgian yeast, caramel, spices, picking up some oak, cloves, figs, prunes, some sweetness, not getting any of the bourbon but there is a nice oak presence, not getting any alcohol, smells complex with some depth.

T: Belgian yeast flavors, toasted caramel, spices, cloves, oak, slightly bitter, finishes with some strong dark fruit notes likes figs, prunes, lots of flavor, complexity, depth. The oak from the wine barrels comes through more than the bourbon flavors, not a bourbon bomb, a little heat from the alcohol.

M: Medium mouthfeel, slightly dry finish, a good amount of carbonation.

O: Very impressed, has a nice Belgian yeast characteristic up front, get some oak, lots of other flavors, a great sipping beer. I'm going to pick up another bottle or two for the cellar.

 998 characters

Photo of Tele
3.62/5  rDev -10.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

A: 4.25 Pours reddish-brown with a one-inch, light tan head. Looks like a pretty standard dubbel.

S: 4 Smells rather sweet up front with some spice and fruit mixed in. Mostly get caramel and malt followed by classic Belgian esters. Cinnamon and nutmeg seem a bit more dominant than most Belgians. There’s a little earthy funk as well, probably from the wine barrels.

T: 3.5 Actually a bit fruity and tart at first. It doesn’t taste infected, rather the wine barrel aging must have imparted more tart, cherry-like qualities than expected. Sweetness and esters come through as well, but they are covered up by the tartness. Bitterness on the finish is a bit off-putting, but it does provide some interesting funk that reminds me of aged cheddar; it’s strange, but at least it counters the unexpected tartness.

M: 3 Rather thin, watery, and under carbonated.

O: 3.5 Pretty strange beer here. The wine barrels have made some interesting aspects come through, but it doesn’t seem like the base beer could handle it resulting in an unbalanced beer.

 1,057 characters

Photo of Bouleboubier
3.75/5  rDev -6.9%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

(purchased this at the Sierra Nevada Brewery in April 2013 - poured into a 10 oz goblet)

A: big head rise on the pour (as well as extra pours), quick.... fairly hazy russet-amber.... keeps a misty foam atop straight through, however, not a spit of lace

S: initial impression is it's comparable to a Flemish red or Oud Bruin - that realm - maybe (sweet) red wine?.... oak-aging is apparent.... touch of cocoa nibs.... wine-fruity, yet also hints of dates and raspberry(?)

T: a bit messy upon first sip - a touch of smoke (phenol) comes through in the finish.... an unrefined sort of "infection" quality.... late lightly-toasty, bruised-prune, lingers in aftertaste... midway through the tasting, nice hints of dark fruit (via dark caramel malt or yeast? both?), however, a mild acidic funk keeps getting in the way... warmer (15-20 min): mellow chocolate-vinous notes like that found in a Flemish Red (again, the wood?)... overall, it has a bold enough flavor, it's just the balance is pretty off between the malts/yeast against the results of the barrel-aging

M: a bit light-bodied and watery for a Dubbel - this improves as it warms but, with the tartness and the seeming tiny prickliness of the carbonation, it's still slightly dull-dry and one can't help but long for a little depth/richness in the malt-body character

O: almost decent - best offerings when warmer - the barrel-derived funk does seem to dominate (at the expensive of balance and malt savoring).... perhaps it improves with age, but I have my doubts

 1,524 characters

Photo of CharlieMurphy
3.46/5  rDev -14.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A: Warm mahogany with tangerine and maplewood undertone hues. Fuzzy microbubbled cream colored head that wades around the surface and doesn't lace.

S: An odd combo at work:
-Dark fruitiness such as candied appricots, apples, maybe a little bit of not yet ripe figs and green raisins.
-Splinteringly fresh oak
-A bug and bourbon oak cocktail like the ones that don't work in a AWA. Reminds me of Squatters Root Cellar.

T: Much more balanced and beer-backboned than the nose. Lighter malts than the average dubblel and seemingly more like a petite quad. The wine is there and works well with the belgian yeast and malt profile, but is in the foreground for sure. It almost has notes akin to a partial apple brandy barrel treatment amidst merlot barrels. The oak is vary faint (I'd guess these saw ~3 months) and not astringent and bold like the nose.

M: Very light and mild. A teeny tiny bit of residual tartness, but nearly squeaky clean down and out. Light and thin for sure, similar to a light apple juice.

O: Overall pretty balanced, but there's a few things that don't quite tow the line. Worth the try for $2.99 all day.

 1,133 characters

Photo of Samuel906
3.89/5  rDev -3.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Light and fruity, you can really taste the barrels this was brewed in. Pours deep ruby red, thin head, no lacing. Really great smell, lots of grapes, some lime, cherries yeast, and cider. Taste is delicate and complex. Lots of wine influence, oak, yeast, caramel, and fruit. No booze at all. Very light feel, refreshing. Good beer, more well balanced than the quad.

 365 characters

Photo of scottfrie
3.57/5  rDev -11.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.5

375ml bottle purchased at the brewery. Poured into snifter. Aged in red wine barrels.

A: Pours a very dark ruby red with a finger of short-lived light brown head that quickly faded into a faint collar and scummy film.
S: Dry oak nose with a large red wine vinous quality to it (as expected). Musty earthy woody grape notes dominate over hints of dark fruits, leafy hops, and peppery yeasty spices.
T: Greasy caramel, dark fruits, and “dubbel” flavors take a back seat to the vinous wine barrel that dominated the nose. The finish is light with flavors of pear, apple and cinnamon, and the aftertaste contains raisins, brown sugar and toffee. No tartness just dry oak and light red wine.
M: Airy splashy carbonation, medium-light body, drying mouthfeel and fairly crisp overall.
O: A nice touch on the original, and while not my favorite, a very drinkable beer all around. I would gladly drink this again.

 913 characters

Photo of dar482
3.64/5  rDev -9.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

I had this at Good Beer in NYC.

It comes in a ruby color, lighter than the Quad version.

I did not like this as much as the BBA Quad version. It had some lovely drinkable flavors, but lacked the depth and smoothness of the BBA Quad. It taste a bit of dried prunes and sweet cherry juice. It has a medium carbonation and I'm surprised it was so drinkable with its decent ABV.

 376 characters

Photo of ngeunit1
4.16/5  rDev +3.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Dark ruby red with a finger of frothy off-white head. Fades normal.

S - Caramel and dark caramel malts, red wine, oak, dark fruits, Belgian yeast, spices, a touch of booze.

T - Dark caramel malts, cherries, raisins, and other dark fruits, red wine, oak, vanilla, Belgian yeast, spices, candi sugar, a hint of booze.

M - Medium-plus bodied with moderate carbonation. Smooth with a sweet and warming finish.

D - Nicely balanced dubbel. The barrel adds some great complexity and depth.

 490 characters

Photo of ThePorterSorter
4.3/5  rDev +6.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Thanks Tom for this beer
The dark rusty dull brown with a thin tan head that dissipates quickly. The nose is potently vinous, distinctly red wine, with none of the dubbel sweetness that's present in the regular version. The taste is definitely a harmonious blend of sweet prunes and red wine followed up be a lingering sweetness. I would have preferred more of a dry red wine finish in the mouthfeel (it's a lot drier than the regular), but it does a great job transitioning through the depth of flavors present. The acquired 1% in abv is not noticeable. Great beer that's delicious and completely worth trying.

 611 characters

Photo of kaseydad
3.57/5  rDev -11.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

Found this at the brewery. Haven’t seen it around the East Bay so not sure this is ever making it down to the Bay.

Pours a cloudy brown/burgundy ale with a nice size off-white head. No lacing to speak of.

The aroma has a nice wine element to it. Which it should considering where it was housed. Light funk. Cherries. Raspberries.

The taste is rather lacking in flavor. Not getting much of anything. Bland. Light wine but mainly just dull tasting. Actually reminds me of a very, very flat cranberry juice. Some bitter notes. Not sure what I’m supposed to be tasting here. Spicy finish with a biting-back hope bite at the end.

Mucho carbonation here.

Overall I, sadly, was not impressed. The wine barrel didn’t do much for this other than the nose. Love the look of the dark burgundy label, but the flavor was just lacking. I can’t blame it on lack of carbonation either. That was there!

 899 characters

Photo of weonfire
4.21/5  rDev +4.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Enjoyed on tap at the Holy Grale in Louisville, KY. Poured into a snifter.

A - Think finger of white head. Dissapates after 3-4 min. Brazilian Cherry hue.

S - Vanilla, Red wine, Sugar/molasses, really sweet. Smells very very good. Assortment of fruit in which I cannot distinguish individually. Dates if i had to guess ?

T - Yep, certainly aged in a red wine barrel. Nice Vanilla taste. 8.5ABV hidden really well. Very sweet though

M - Viscosity is low/med. great vanilla/fruit flavor remains for 20-30 seconds after each sip. Small taste of vinegar down the throat.

O- Really nice. Aging in the wine barrel was a great addition to the already great Dubbel. very nice wine flavor. A bit sweet to drink all night. It did remind me of an unaged BFM - Abbaye De Saint Bon Chien.

 780 characters

Photo of KickbacksSteve
4.31/5  rDev +6.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

On tap at Kickbacks in Jax. Poured into a snifter. Off-white head with moderate retention on a hazy mahogany body. Mostly clear lacing. Aroma includes caramel malt, dark cherry, Belgian yeast, green apple, raisins and molasses. Taste follows suit. Actually approaches a flanders red in a lot of ways, in quite a tasty way. Similar to what I expected to taste aging this dubbel in a wine barrel. Awesome.

 403 characters

Photo of popery
4.32/5  rDev +7.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours a deep reddish brown, a nice mahogany color. The head is small and beige-ish. Just a thin blanket of bubbles. I don't see any haze or sediment. Once the head fades away, it looks like a glass of brandy or bourbon with a fine ring of bubbles around the edge. The aroma is excellent. It reminds me of Russian River Supplication, more than anything. There are berry and red wine flavors on top of sweet caramels, peaches and an earthy yeast note. It smells like a fancy dessert, maybe a piece of bread pudding with a wine reduction sauce. The taste doesn't quite live up to the aroma, but it's close. This is probably the best non-sour wine barrel aged beer that I've tried. It starts with sweet stone fruits, and caramel malt flavors builds up more refined sweetness. The barrel adds mildly tannic vinous and oak notes. It balances the sweetness wonderfully. It tastes like a non-sour take on a Russian River sour, somewhere between Supplication and Consecration. The finish is caramel, merlot and oak. Mouthfeel is effervescent but not harsh. About medium in total carbonation but it prickles the palate nicely. I came to this beer with relatively low expectations. I haven't been a big fan of the previous Ovila beers that I've tried. They all seemed a bit safe and not quite refined enough. However, this beer is a definite winner. The base beer works excellently with the barrel-aging, and the barrel-aging is particularly well done. The flavors blend very well and produce a combination that is greater than the sum of its parts.

 1,538 characters

first ← prev | 1-25 | 26-50  | nextlast
Ovila Abbey Barrel Aged Dubbel from Sierra Nevada Brewing Co.
89 out of 100 based on 33 ratings.