1. The wait is over! Download the BeerAdvocate app on iTunes or Google Play now.
  2. Get 12 issues / year of BeerAdvocate magazine for only $9.99!

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

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
88
very good

689 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 689
Reviews: 162
rAvg: 3.93
pDev: 11.2%
Wants: 17
Gots: 88 | FT: 7
Brewed by:
Sierra Nevada Brewing Co. visit their website
California, United States

Style | ABV
Quadrupel (Quad) |  10.20% ABV

Availability: Limited (brewed once)

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: Trilogy31 on 01-30-2013)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Latest | High | Low | Top Raters
Ratings: 689 | Reviews: 162 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of rhoadsrage
rhoadsrage

Illinois

3.53/5  rDev -10.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

(Served in a chalice)
A- This beer pours a dense walnut brown body with a glowing brown at the base and a thin cream of foam that breaks up in the center. There are microbubbles that pop at the surface.

S- The soft fusel alcohol and dark berry notes blend with some dark sweet malt and dark cola notes with graham hints growing as it opens. There is a classic abbey yeast character which always makes me think of monk’s bad breath when I smell it.

T- Tastes of sweet dark fruit with hints of tart plum skins under a sweet syrup malt finish. There is a fusel taste to the finish with some bittern notes and a slight tang that grows and leads to a plum hint that lingers.

M- The medium mouthfeel has a gentle alcohol heat that fills the throat after each sip.

O- This is a big hot (fusel) sweet monster that could really use some age, but no dates on the bottles. The fruity quality is nice but it can’t save the beer. It was a bit rough to slug through but perhaps it will be better in the bitter winter winds?

Serving type: bottle

07-04-2013 03:39:59 | More by rhoadsrage
Photo of bluejacket74
bluejacket74

Ohio

3.85/5  rDev -2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

375 ml caged and corked bottle. Served in a Unibroue tulip, the beer pours a dark cola brown color with a half inch light tan head. Head retention and lacing are both decent enough. The brew smells like plums, cherries, bready malt and a bit of molasses. It tastes like plums, bready malt, cloves, toffee, and some bananas, chocolate, and a slight medicinal taste. Mouthfeel/body is medium, it's a bit creamy and coating with a good amount of carbonation. I think it's a good brew overall, but with that being said it's not one of the best Quads I've tried. Still, it's certainly worth trying. $3.79 for a single bottle.

Serving type: bottle

07-04-2013 01:32:45 | More by bluejacket74
Photo of Roland45s
Roland45s

Virginia

3.5/5  rDev -10.9%

07-03-2013 14:33:48 | More by Roland45s
Photo of blivingston1985
blivingston1985

North Carolina

4.25/5  rDev +8.1%

07-02-2013 04:36:54 | More by blivingston1985
Photo of PHSCAPT
PHSCAPT

Pennsylvania

4.5/5  rDev +14.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured at fridge temp into a Bernardus goblet. Little to no head at this temperature. Also, almost no yeast at bottom of bottle. Dark, impenetrable brown in color. I get sweet notes of coffee, chocolate and smoke both on the nose and on the tongue. Sweeter than I expected, similar to a St Bernardus. No bitterness and a front-tongue dry finish. Very little carbonation, again probably due to the low temperature. Warms nicely to a full bouquet, like I'd expect from an abbey-style quad. Very nice, buy again.

Serving type: bottle

07-01-2013 22:49:05 | More by PHSCAPT
Photo of ADZA
ADZA

Australia

3.4/5  rDev -13.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.25

Pours a kola hue with the creamiest two finger head that stays forever and clingy lacing all down the sides,the smell is caramel candy,booze,plums,toffee malts and raisin bread,the mouthfeel is just over medium bodied with moderate carbonation and has tastes of plum jam,port,toffee liqueur,marzipan,bready malts and finished with a sweet raisin booziness which is most noticeable on first sip and goes away after it warms you up and overall it's not a bad quad but I don't get much of the plums added and just tastes like a normal quad with nothing added but a nice winter warmer netherless just not a beer you would have to repeat to relive the taste.

Serving type: bottle

06-30-2013 12:02:55 | More by ADZA
Photo of illidurit
illidurit

California

3.25/5  rDev -17.3%

06-29-2013 02:32:03 | More by illidurit
Photo of Lucnifter
Lucnifter

California

4/5  rDev +1.8%

06-29-2013 00:21:56 | More by Lucnifter
Photo of Tom-Peters
Tom-Peters

California

2.5/5  rDev -36.4%

06-28-2013 17:13:57 | More by Tom-Peters
Photo of mxchap
mxchap

California

4.06/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.75

Re-Review (5 months later)

Appearance: dark brown with a nice reddish hue if you shine a light on it. Short head but still dense and creamy.
Aroma: Complex mix of esters and phenols, plums (duh), candied fruit, and something dark and toasty (toffee?)
Taste: Sweetness upfront yields to a nice toffee / plum / chocolate middle. Very smooth and balanced finish.
Feel: Initially feels overcarbed, but this notion fades to a nice smooth finish. The alcohol isn't too hot and blends nicely.
Overall: I tried this in January and thought it was very average (3). Different beer to me now and I think it should be up in the 4 range.

Serving type: bottle

06-27-2013 21:55:36 | More by mxchap
Photo of smonice
smonice

New Jersey

3.75/5  rDev -4.6%

06-26-2013 19:28:43 | More by smonice
Photo of BKBassist
BKBassist

New York

4/5  rDev +1.8%

06-25-2013 19:16:33 | More by BKBassist
Photo of Jadjunk
Jadjunk

Georgia

3.8/5  rDev -3.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

"Ovila Abbey Quad is heady with aromas of caramel, rich malt, and dark fruit- balanced by the spiciness and delicate fruity notes of a traditional Belgian yeast. This complex beer is a collaboration between Sierra Nevada Brewing Co. and the monks from the Abbey of New Clairvaux. It features sugar plums grown on the grounds of the Abbey, and harvested by the monks in Vina. We hope you enjoy this collaboration ale." Brewed in the style of a Quadrupel with plums added. A recent one-time release in the expanding Ovila Abbey Ales series, this one continues the reformatting to 4 11.5 ounce corked & caged bottles rather than the previous format of 750ml. bottles. A one-time release.

Poured from an 11.5oz. bottle to an Ovila Goblet glass. Served north of 56º Fahrenheit.

(Appearance) Pours a crispy caramel head of a light fizzy texture. Body color is a deep, dark brown. Retention is slightly above average, runs to a thin surface cover quickly and lacing is a bit thin and streaked. It's a pretty nice appearance. 3.75

(Smell) Aroma consists of bready caramel, clean candied brown sugars, hints of medium roasted buttery malt, fruity characters are certainly reminiscent of plums, although cherry lingers in trace amounts. Hints of anise for a slight licorice twang is in tow to contradict an otherwise clean aroma. Potency is slightly north of medium. All characters are collectively approachable and collaboratively enjoyable with few missteps. 4

(Taste) Flavors of slight plum sugar and licorice up front, following into a semi-sweet cocoa and roasty malt finish. Balance is slightly sweet over bitter with lingering alcohol providing a balance counterpoint. There are a few weary spots of ethanol reminiscent of cough syrup consistency with not a lot of body flavor nor depth to balance it out, calling out a sharp, sticky and dry finish. Drinkability is lower than expected- not for the best reasons. The plum character is surprisingly mild, a bit underrepresented from my expectations in flavor, rather adding a pure phenolic sugar character to the already stark sweetness of the malt. 3.75

(Mouthfeel) Texture is slick with a medium thickness and mildly syrupy. Body is light/medium for quadrupels and medium+ amongst all beers. Alcohol presence is medium/heavy. The carbonation is fine, but there could have been a lot more depth to this beer; grain, fruit, malt sweetness, sour notes- anything should have been employed to balance out the alcohol presence- it just isn't captivating or even enjoyable on its own. 3.75

(Overall) Despite being a Quadrupel, flavors are very mild. Yet, it's not quite as drinkable as I thought it should be, with a startling cough syrup finish and not enough body depth nor flavor to round it out better. The plums were not particularly a strong focal point of this beer, but then again not much in this beer took that honor either. I'm not overly pleased with yet another Ovila collaboration. It's passable but I expect a lot more from my Quads than this one gives me. 3.75

Sierra Nevada Brewing Co.'s
Ovila Belgian-Style Abbey Quad Ale Brewed With Plums
3.8/5.00

Serving type: bottle

06-25-2013 02:37:50 | More by Jadjunk
Photo of st9647v3
st9647v3

New Jersey

4/5  rDev +1.8%

06-25-2013 01:43:00 | More by st9647v3
Photo of Illmaticzx
Illmaticzx

North Carolina

3.95/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from corked bottle to nonic

A: dark purplish brown, the color of cola with a nice 1 to 2 finger tan head that hung around

S: pungent dark fruits, malt, alcohol

T: taste plums and dark sweet fruit immediately, something a little bitter in the middle, maybe its the hops struggling to make a presence, then a slightly tart alcohol wall

M: viscous, syrupy

O: its a very good beer with some wow factor but wont make you do cartwheels as there are other quads i prefer

Serving type: bottle

06-21-2013 22:16:58 | More by Illmaticzx
Photo of Nightrain87
Nightrain87

California

4/5  rDev +1.8%

06-20-2013 03:00:19 | More by Nightrain87
Photo of Beer-A-Lot
Beer-A-Lot

Virginia

3.96/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

A very solid and tasty quad. Looks good, although not a great head. Taste of raisins, plums, figs, and bread. Nicely balanced. Not the most full bodied but not too bad in that area. Enjoyable from the first taste to the end. You feel the booze by the end, but heck, that's a quad for you. I could definitely drink this again. I'd like to try some of the other collaborations of Ovila.

Serving type: bottle

06-19-2013 02:19:18 | More by Beer-A-Lot
Photo of Rudy
Rudy

California

4/5  rDev +1.8%

06-18-2013 09:53:10 | More by Rudy
Photo of mychalg9
mychalg9

Illinois

4/5  rDev +1.8%

06-18-2013 02:28:51 | More by mychalg9
Photo of Pencible
Pencible

Virginia

4.03/5  rDev +2.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A: This poured a hazy black garnet, with some tan had.
S: It smelled like bitter copper and earthy pumpernickel, with some molasses and dates and creamy yeast.
T: It tasted like earthy honey wheat and molasses and spicy Belgian yeast, with some copper and fig and clove. It had a clean bittersweet aftertaste, almost like cola, with some alcohol warming.
M: It was thick with lots of fine natural carbonation. Excellent body.
D: This was a great brew, with complex and delicate scent and taste. The body was great, and the finish was smooth despite the noticeable alcohol. So it was pretty easy to drink, although I suspect it would mellow further if cellared for some years. I was surprised to enjoy this beer so much, even fresh.

Serving type: bottle

06-16-2013 19:11:19 | More by Pencible
Photo of Jas45678
Jas45678

Michigan

3.75/5  rDev -4.6%

06-12-2013 23:34:36 | More by Jas45678
Photo of YogiBeer
YogiBeer

Illinois

4.5/5  rDev +14.5%

06-12-2013 22:44:46 | More by YogiBeer
Photo of utopiajane
utopiajane

New York

3.16/5  rDev -19.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3

From a straight pour it’s purplish black like an eggplant with a soft full head of foam that fell fast but hugs the glass with soapy lace. Left a thin skin on top and has alcohol legs. Nose is really sweet and I’m immediately turned off. Big heavy malt, sugar, molasses and dough. Plums, more dark fruit sweetness and the subtlest of hop floral and spice underneath. Alcohol is peeking out. As it warms it opens up vinous and with some leather and tobacco . Taste is sweet and then some. Sugar, heavy and cloying. Plums are lost to the sugary sweetness and to the taste of prune. The malt is underplayed and could have used more roast, more toast, more depth and some biscuit. There was no hop presence to balance the sweetness and it was thick and syrupy. Yeast tries to offer up spice but is devoured by sugar. One dimensional. As it warmed it developed a bitterness from the alcohol. Without much carbonation the alcohol is fully on the palate and this hits the stomach like a big sweet donut. I could live without it.

Serving type: bottle

06-12-2013 10:23:17 | More by utopiajane
Photo of Flounder57
Flounder57

Massachusetts

4/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12.7 oz bottle was poured into a Chimay goblet.

Appearance: This beer poured a small head that reduced to a thin layer. It is a dark brown color with no clarity or bubbles seen coming up through the glass.

Smell: Caramel malts, doughy, spicy, yeasty, plums, raisins, bananas, figs, and boozy alcohol.

Taste: Same as above. Pretty tasty brew and exactly what I was expecting put of a quad.

Mouthfeel: Warm boozy alcohol, full bodied, low to medium carbonation, spicy, a little chewy, and smooth.

Overall: Awesome stuff. Will look for more of this in the future.

Serving type: bottle

06-12-2013 06:00:14 | More by Flounder57
Photo of lsummers
lsummers

California

3.96/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours black as night with a three finger tannish frothy head that recedes to a half finger head leaving some great lacing behind. Looks mildly carbonated.

Smells coming from this remind me of the classic quad notes. Dark fruits, raisins, slight malty burnt brown sugar sweetness, and that great dessert/pie quality.

Taste hits right away with a sort of dark fruits and slightly smokey malts. A definite sweetness like that of candied fruit. Slight vanilla and toffee. Mostly those overly ripe dark and dried fruit qualities. The toffee malts help mix this all together. Slight boozyness on the backend that detracts a bit.

Mouthfeel is mildly carbonated yet full bodied. This is a thick beer and thank goodness it's carbonated well.

Overall, a solid quad and one that a fan of the style should definitely try. This is a huge beer and you can definitely tell while tasting it. Newcomers should steer away as it could deter them from the style. But to me, this is just plain delicious.

Serving type: bottle

06-10-2013 02:48:36 | More by lsummers
Ovila Belgian-Style Abbey Quad: Ale Brewed With Plums from Sierra Nevada Brewing Co.
88 out of 100 based on 689 ratings.