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Ovila Belgian-Style Abbey Quad: Ale Brewed With Plums - Sierra Nevada Brewing Co.

Not Rated.
Ovila Belgian-Style Abbey Quad: Ale Brewed With PlumsOvila Belgian-Style Abbey Quad: Ale Brewed With Plums

Educational use only; do not reuse.
very good

212 Reviews
no score

(Send Samples)
Reviews: 212
Hads: 1,058
Avg: 3.95
pDev: 24.81%
Wants: 51
Gots: 211 | FT: 11
Brewed by:
Sierra Nevada Brewing Co. visit their website
California, United States

Style | ABV
Quadrupel (Quad) |  10.20% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: Trilogy31 on 01-30-2013

No notes at this time.
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
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Reviews: 212 | Hads: 1,058
Reviews by TrojanRB:
Photo of TrojanRB
3.75/5  rDev -5.1%

More User Reviews:
Photo of RexBanner
4.55/5  rDev +15.2%

Poured from bottle into a glass chalice.
Pours a dark brown leaning toward purple, almost like prune juice in its color. No detectable carbonation. 2 finger creamy head which dissipated after about 2 sips. Its appearance was by no means thick although no light made it through the glass.

The aroma was of Belgian yeast. Bready, banana like. You can really pickup the prunes as well as other dark fruits, raisins, dry figs etc.

The taste was delicious! Sweet malts, caramel, subtle prunes. The alcohol burn and spicy notes pleasantly balanced out the sweetness of the malts. Great aftertaste. The mouth feel was chewy yet not heavy. It coated the tongue but didn't linger.

Overall this was a delicious beer. Not a true quad. Its characteristics were more akin to an English barleywine than a Belgian quad but it was delicious nonetheless. I just hate/love these collaborations between brewers because every so often they come up with a gem but it can only be had for a limited time, then you're left with the memories.
I aged this one for 6 months. I think I'll age the remaining 4 bottles for 2 years and see what happens.

 1,130 characters

Photo of TheSixthRing
3.69/5  rDev -6.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Appearance - Pours deep brown with ruby red highlights where light can penetrate with a tan half finger's worth of head. Fair retention, leading to a flat and barren surface with no lacing on the side. Very wine-like in appearance.

Smell - Aroma hits on sweet, dark fruitiness and light sugary notes. Hints of astringency from the alcohol.

Taste - Follows the nose. The plum comes through well with a predominant dark fruit character, along with some brown sugar sweetness. Touches of alcohol in there, but doesn't get too hot. Very wine-like in the finish, with plum, black cherry fruit and dark chocolate in the mix.

Mouthfeel - Full in body with light carbonation. Not quite as chewy as some quads. Drying finish.

Overall - Good brew. Drinks similarly to red wine; like a cab or zin with a touch of carbonation. Maybe not the best or most complex quad out there, but certainly unique. I wouldn't be opposed to drinking it again.

 935 characters

Photo of dbossman
4.02/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Dark reddish brown--actually almost black--with a huge, brown and frothy head; okay lacing

S: Fruity--grapes, plums, cherries, banana--up front; some candi sugars; burnt brown sugar; roasted malts underneath the complexities develop as this warms

T: Slightly burnt brown sugar mingles with fruits: cherries, plums, bananas; some roasted malts linger but the sugary, fruity esters are the star here; some booziness as well in the finish

F: Medium body; nice texture and mouth feel

O: A really pleasant, fruity malty quad

 526 characters

Photo of Catracho5
4.19/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.25

12.7 ounce bottle poured into an Ovila Goblet

A: Dark brown with some ruby edges when held up to the light, tan colored head that quickly vanished, lots of tiny bubbles in the head, what's left of it, no lacing, not seeing any carbonation.

A: Belgian yeast, plums coming through really nice, dark fruits, brown sugar, smells really dark and sweet, picking up some alcohol on the end.

T: Classic Belgian yeast flavors quickly give way to plum, dark fruits, brown sugar sweetness, slight tart flavor at the end, plum sweetness lingers, not much alcohol for 10.2%.

M: Medium mouthfeel, slight dry finish. A little thin, doesn't pop like a Belgian quad.

O: I really like this, very balanced, it has that classic quad Belgian flavors but it is enhanced with a nice plum, dark fruit sweetness, warms up really well, alcohol is hidden pretty good, definitely going to pick up another four-pack.

 893 characters

Photo of boilermakerbrew
4.26/5  rDev +7.8%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

A- Pours a very deep brown in color in the body. Slight hints of red are mixed into the body when held up to the light and the overall color impression is similar to a very deep colored, cherry hardwood. A small. 1cm head forms and hangs around for a good while and is beige in color. Lacing is very good as well.

S- First impression of the smell is mush less fruity than expected, and much more roasty. Chocolate and medium toasted malts greet you right up front with a touch of the plums underneath. The end of the scent is more dark fruit forward than the beginning, but still predominantly malts.

T- Starts off with the same dark and roasty malts as the scent, but moves into the plums more quickly than the scent. Chocolate and slightly burnt malts intermingle over top of the plums before the dark fruit flavor kicks in full strength. The fruit flavor dominates the middle of the drink before some burnt flavors come back at the end and linger a little after the drink.

M- This beer is thick, smooth, and low in carbonation; it feels just like the liquid bread the style is intended to be. There is only a slight bitterness and warmth from the alcohol, but it remains dangerously smooth and easy to drink.

Overall, this is a pleasant surprise. I was expecting a very fruit forward quad, but the dark and chocolate malts actually maintain a great balance with the fruit and provide a pretty awesome drinking experience.

 1,428 characters

Photo of don1481
4.55/5  rDev +15.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

12.7oz bottle poured into Mr. Pint Glass. Grabbed it on a whim at Woodman's tonight 3 minutes before the liquor section closed. Let's see what we got.

Appearance: This is fancy, with a cage and cork and all the good stuff! Pours a very dark brown with a hint of red and a rapidly-diminishing tan head. Almost dropped the glass on my head holding it up to the light to try and see through it! Yeah, really no light is getting through this.

Smell: Initially, it smells an awful lot like St. Bernardus Abt 12. Dark fruits, plums for sure, caramel, molasses, a little hint of hoppiness. Pretty complex. And intriguing. Keeps opening up more as I let it sit for a moment. Almost smells like a dry red wine when it's all put together. Definitely... interesting.

Taste: Yeah, this is... WOW. This is dry with a definite dry red wine theme to it. It's got a hint of sweetness up front, but that quickly gets spun into the aforementioned dryness. Really, really complex. This is way different from any other quad I've ever had.

Mouthfeel: Really, really clean and smooth. If I was blindfolded I probably would have guessed this to be a richer, thicker red wine. Unbelievable. This bottle is gonna go down WAY too easily.

Overall: I have not been this pleasantly surprised with a beer in a long time. At least with others that I've bought on a whim lately, there was a description of what to expect. Here... I didn't even look it up on BA or have anything to go off of other than the bottle's description. I am so glad I bought this - I suspect I may buy another 4 pack to age!

 1,572 characters

Photo of tectactoe
3.2/5  rDev -19%
look: 4 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3

Very interested to see Sierra Nevada's spin on the Belgian-style quadruple. Thanks to Chris for splitting this one. Ovila appears black from atop, but shows some beaming ruby translucency when held in front of the light. A small and creamy khaki-colored head settles almost instantly to a ring. Some wet lacing hangs for only a few moments before dripping back down into the beer, leaving the glass fairly unscathed in the end.

Heavy plums dominate the aroma - no surprise there, really. Unfortunately they seem a bit "off" - almost chalky and slightly medicinal to a degree. Not quite off-putting, but not extremely enjoyable, either. There are, however, lots of vibrant juicy and sweet fruit notes beneath the strange plum blanket. Some light cocoa notes, molasses, and Belgian spiced yeast aromas catch on a bit more once this sucker warms up. Mild spices and even a tint of bubblegum. Overall, kind of a middle of the road aroma for the style.

Would you be shocked to hear that Ovila tastes like a quad with extra-dense plum notes? Because that's what I'm about to tell you. Some of the "standard" or common quad flavors are present - dates, figs, light black licorice, phenols, and very faint Candi sugar. But the plums really work their hardest to pull the wool over all of these things. Sadly, the plums on the palate come right along with the weird chalky and medicinal notes that the aroma was putting out there. Almost tastes like a chewed up vitamin. That strong chalkiness carries into the aftertaste along with a faint hint of sugar, dates, and plums. Medium bodied, mildly creamy with medium carbonation.

Not terrible, but the weird and vitamin-like aroma and flavor that seemed to cling alongside the plums was just too prevalent to be fully enjoyable. It masked what would otherwise be a solid Belgian-style quad and instead turned it into a forgettable, slightly better than average ale. Wasn't disappointed to have tried it, but I recommend passing it up, especially when options like Rochefort 10 and Abt 12 are readily available.

 2,052 characters

Photo of t2grogan
4/5  rDev +1.3%

Photo of MadScientist
4.25/5  rDev +7.6%

Photo of BubalooBrewMaster
3/5  rDev -24.1%

Photo of NWer
4/5  rDev +1.3%

Photo of thetommo
3.75/5  rDev -5.1%

Photo of SD-Alefan
4.34/5  rDev +9.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Poured from a 12 oz. bottle into a Sierra Nevada Luettich Balloon.

This beer pours a very, very dark plum color. It's nearly black with spots of plum purple showing up in the light. There's very little foam from an aggressive center pour, perhaps a half a finger that quickly dissipates to traceries of a head.

The smell? Initially it was booze. Straight up. Then hints of fruit gather in your nostrils. Plum? I think so. There's also just a trace of yeast in the background.

The first taste to hit my tongue was the sharp bite of alcohol, then maybe a little smack of chocolate and roast coffee, maybe even some good black tea. Then the fruit. Plum, raisin, maybe some fig. There is a very nice, lingering tartness and the finishing bubbly, boozy dryness. As the beer warms a bit, I'm getting more of the plum.

The mouthfeel is warm and boozy, smooth and slick, followed by the bubbly carb and a alcohol bite the back of the throat. there is a pleasant, lingering tingle.

All in all, a very enjoyable experience and a great sipping brew. I was expecting more plum very but I find I'm enjoying the subtlety here,. Quite nice. It would be interesting to age a couple of these.

 1,181 characters

Photo of warnerry
4/5  rDev +1.3%

Photo of chip26
3.75/5  rDev -5.1%

Photo of Beaver13
2.56/5  rDev -35.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 2 | feel: 4 | overall: 2

12.7 oz caged and corked bottle. Pours dark amber with a medium creamy tan head that goes to a thin film that laces the glass some.

The aroma is bready malts, dark fruits, some floral wood, Belgian yeast and a bit of harsh alcohol.

The flavor is sweet woody floral malts, with dark fruits and some harsh charred alcohol. It's got some off notes that I can't identify too (plastic and cardboard). The mouthfeel is medium to full bodied with smooth carbonation.

Overall, I didn't care for this. I remember it being fruitier with less off notes last I had it (still not great though).

 584 characters

Photo of Dbrulet
4/5  rDev +1.3%

Photo of Beerswag
4.1/5  rDev +3.8%

Photo of mrquartetman
5/5  rDev +26.6%

Photo of henryclay_
4.25/5  rDev +7.6%

Photo of SuperbikeShaun
4.39/5  rDev +11.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A very interesting take on a Belgian quad. Pours a very murky, imposing dark brown/black, very little head and almost no head retention. Smells of dark fruits, plums, dried black raspberry, some of the spiciness from the yeast comes through. Taste follows suit, tons of dark fruits and floral/spicy yeast. Mouthfeel is superb, extremely smooth with a great finish. This is closer to a good Syrah than to most beers.

 415 characters

Photo of olradetbalder
3/5  rDev -24.1%

Photo of Mugenlude
4/5  rDev +1.3%

Photo of bartlettc42
5/5  rDev +26.6%

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Ovila Belgian-Style Abbey Quad: Ale Brewed With Plums from Sierra Nevada Brewing Co.
88 out of 100 based on 212 ratings.