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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

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very good

747 Ratings
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 747
Reviews: 166
rAvg: 3.93
pDev: 11.2%
Wants: 18
Gots: 106 | FT: 8
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
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Ratings: 747 | Reviews: 166 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of BigPlay1824
4.51/5  rDev +14.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

served in a sierra Nevada snifter

A: pours a very deep brown, not quite black. slightly transparent with a very thin head of fine bubbled coffee tan colored head that dissipates immediately, has a nice amount of small carbonation bubbles working their way up from the bottom,
S: very deep dark fruit notes, plums are most obvious with grapes as well and a bit of a smell like the outdoors after a torrential downpour in the spring with the sun shining and everything feeling clean again
T: very multidimensional, begins with the deep fruit notes up front and then, moves into the nice deep Belgian spice notes i had been looking for from the yeast profile, finishes just slightly cloying and sweet with an interesting warmth in the back of the throat that hits gently and briefly from the ABV
M: smooth all across, interesting thickness to it which makes is slightly astringent and dry but not at all too much, very well balanced, perfect amount of carbonation for the style, quite wonderful
O: pretty much on par with what I expect from sierra Nevada, exceptional quality and balance. i really enjoyed this one but ive also had the brandy barrel aged one which was a bit more over the top as is to be expected.

BigPlay1824, Mar 23, 2013
Photo of ohiobeer29
3.5/5  rDev -10.9%

ohiobeer29, Mar 22, 2013
Photo of Danny1217
4.25/5  rDev +8.1%

Danny1217, Mar 22, 2013
Photo of harrymel
3.75/5  rDev -4.6%

harrymel, Mar 22, 2013
Photo of cbutova
3.99/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

I like the new look of the corked and caged 12oz bottles. Says 10.2% ABV on this bottle, no date that I can find. Turns out this is an entirely separate beer, I just accidentally reviewed the normal version. This one has cooler labels!

A- Poured from the caged 12oz bottle into a large chalice. The beer itself is quite dark, a very dark brown hue with a light tan head. The cap is about one finger high with a very silky looking texture. The bubbles are extremely fine in the foam and retention is nice. Big coats of lace all around the glass.

S- Right upon opening the bottle I noticed a pretty heavy dark fruit, vinous presence. This has a grape and plum feel and is probably from both the added fruit and the yeast strain they use. Dark candi sugar, sweet caramel, raisins, esters like banana and some clove in there as well.

T- Like the nose, dark fruit forward in the flavor and a very strong flavor overall. Specific fruit elements I get are plum, figs, prune, dark grapes and fruit pits. Definitely like wine in a way with the heavy grape and dark fruit notes. Belgian yeast brings spice, phenols, pepper, clove and some esters. Caramel sweets, candi sugars and a hint of alcohol in the finish.

MF- A pretty big, oily thick body with a pretty creamy overall consistency. Carbonation is moderately high but smooth. Alcohol warmth and some bitterness in the finish.

Either the plums or the yeast gives this beer a pretty vinous overall flavor. This adds a nice complexity to a very flavorful yeast strain in such a big beer. A bit boozy but not enough to bother me.

cbutova, Mar 22, 2013
Photo of PEIhop
4/5  rDev +1.8%

PEIhop, Mar 21, 2013
Photo of thegerm87
2/5  rDev -49.1%

thegerm87, Mar 21, 2013
Photo of Bung
2.49/5  rDev -36.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.25

375ml. Dark cola brown pour, thin layer of off white head. Retained for a little while.

Aroma, pretty sweet, candied fruit, plum, some prune and fig.

Taste, a little sweet malt and brown sugar up front. Some yeastiness, allspice. Goes into plum other light candy fruit. Finish is cherry medicine.

About medium body, I thought a bit low on carbonation which did not help the cough syrup like nature of this. A little warming, like a nice shot of Nyquil.

It feels like this is close, maybe some time, maybe some small tweaks in the recipe. As it is seems a bit medicinal. It seems to get worse as it warms.

Bung, Mar 21, 2013
Photo of deuce9259
4/5  rDev +1.8%

deuce9259, Mar 21, 2013
Photo of michaeljstraub
4.5/5  rDev +14.5%

michaeljstraub, Mar 21, 2013
Photo of oline73
3.5/5  rDev -10.9%

oline73, Mar 20, 2013
Photo of BillyLrsn
3.5/5  rDev -10.9%

BillyLrsn, Mar 19, 2013
Photo of BARFLYB
4/5  rDev +1.8%

BARFLYB, Mar 19, 2013
Photo of Envelopes
3.5/5  rDev -10.9%

Envelopes, Mar 19, 2013
Photo of impending
3.84/5  rDev -2.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4


375ml into a tulip. Pours a slick deep dark copper mahogany, towering café au lait colored head with an encouraging pour recedes slowly, ok lacing.

Aroma is of spicy plums, a strong phenolic note and a little solvent alcohol but nice nonetheless.

Big flavor. Vinous notes and plums without a doubt. Minor bitter, tiny dry twang at the beginning of the finish. Generally bittersweet until the aftertaste fades when a pleasant sweetness is left behind. A strong phenolic aftertaste evaporates slowly. A tad more than thin mouthfeel.

interesting that this is apparently different that the original quad offering - the first I thought was one of the best american brewed quads, this one, not to the same degree

impending, Mar 18, 2013
Photo of XnFM
4.25/5  rDev +8.1%

XnFM, Mar 17, 2013
Photo of RadfordBrewing
4.25/5  rDev +8.1%

RadfordBrewing, Mar 17, 2013
Photo of JarMills
4.5/5  rDev +14.5%

JarMills, Mar 17, 2013
Photo of Pinche_Oso
4/5  rDev +1.8%

Pinche_Oso, Mar 17, 2013
Photo of mportnoy
3.25/5  rDev -17.3%

mportnoy, Mar 17, 2013
Photo of Gavage
3.83/5  rDev -2.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Appearance: pours a dark brown almost black color with a short wispy head.

Smell: malt and fruit sweetness, and a hint of alcohol comes through.

Taste: big malt profile with slight chocolate flavors, some plum sweetness, a hint of allspice, Belgian yeast, some pepper, and a decent balancing bitterness. Alcohol is soft but noticeable.

Mouthfeel: heavy in body. Lightly crisp to start, smooth and velvety at the finish. Sme dryness arrives late too.

Overall: a slow sipping big beer that has a nice flavor profile. The fruit sweetness is mild here so the plum flavors contribute but are not overly noticeable. Worthy of a try.

Gavage, Mar 16, 2013
Photo of teromous
3.68/5  rDev -6.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 3.5

A: Dark black-brown completely opaque body. Thin creamy light tan head on top, with a few large bubbles in the mix. Does provide some spotty lacing on the glass.

S: I get a huge whiff of alcohol, followed by some coffee notes and wood.

T: Some alcohol flavor, along with a light roasted quality. The roasted flavor (although soft) is a lot stronger than you'll find in most other quads. Some dark chocolate flavors are in there as well, and a soft mineral-like quality to the taste. The bottle says it is brewed with plums, and I get zero plum flavor.

M: The mouthfeel on this beer is fantastic. It's full bodied without being heavy, it's creamy, and just feels great to drink. Perfect carbonation, and just a real pleasure to drink.

O: Overall it was a very nice beer. I would call it a "take" on a quad, because it generally steps away from many Belgian flavors and scents. I was a bit dissatisfied that there was no plum taste in the beer. If the label didn't mention it, I never would have known.

teromous, Mar 16, 2013
Photo of KevSal
4.25/5  rDev +8.1%

KevSal, Mar 16, 2013
Photo of Chrysostom
3.51/5  rDev -10.7%
look: 3.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2.25 | overall: 3.75

This is the best American Trappist knock-off or Trappist replica I've yet to try, that still manages to be somewhat (and I use the word loosely), remotely, distantly like a Belgian. (Three Philosophers is the best, but, like this beer, is more of a stout-cum-barleywine than a Trappist.) For style, this beer is disqualified - it has none of the typical Trappist characteristics.

Presentation: 12.7 fl oz corked and caged bottle decanted (if that's the right word, the beer is so dark as to render impossible to detect any indication of bottle-conditioning or lees) in to a Chimay goblet/chalice.

A: Pours a very dark reddish brown, tending to black. Looks like a stout. One-finger head quickly recedes to barely a rim of foam. Lacing is nonexistent, in keeping with the high ABV and low hop presence (surprising for Sierra Nevada). This looks like a stout, not a Belgian.

S: Booze and grapes. Has a smell more reminiscent of a merlot or pinot noir (I'm not a big wine drinker, as you can tell from my conflating of styles) than anything resembling beer. There are dark fruits present, but no out-of-balance plum - the smell is the closest thing to Belgian about this beer, but the alcohol character is somewhat pronounced.

T: Booze and grapes, with dates, figs, and a definite plum on the back-palate. Moderately strong alcohol presence on the fore- and mid-palate, becoming stronger as the drink warms. Very tart, almost bitter alcoholic finish with a strong warming effect. A tiny bit of complexity, but not that much. "Booze and grapes", or "Booze and dark fruits", about sums it up. I thought I tasted a bit of spice, reminiscent of Rochefort, on my first sip. On later sips, it had disappeared. Uniquely, both malt and hops are virtually non-existent, or at least strongly overpowered by other characteristics. The backbone of this is "grape" or "booze", not malt. The bitterness-component of the finish is the only place where any hop comes through, and it's still dominated by the alcohol.

M: Very thin for the style. Unbalanced. Carbonation nil, at least in effect. Alcohol thins the palate perceptibly, leaning towards spirits. Low point of this beer. When cold, it tasted and felt like water on the tongue. As it warms, it tastes more like wine (non-sparkling) than beer.

D: Somewhat low. Not an excellent drink, but no problem finishing a bottle. Inoffensive, but high in alcohol content, and in alcohol character. Drinkable, but doesn't make you want another - it makes you want a Chimay.

O: About equal to the sum of its parts, a decent beer that is quite a bit above-average for American imitations of Trappists, head and shoulders above similar failed experiments such as the Nineteen, the Reverend, Brother Thelonious, etc., but is not something that one would go out of the way to drink again. About 72-75 on a scale of 100.

Three Philosophers is much better as a drink, but even less Belgian than this - at least this has some Belgian character in the nose.

Chrysostom, Mar 16, 2013
Photo of Commodore69
4/5  rDev +1.8%

Commodore69, Mar 16, 2013
Ovila Belgian-Style Abbey Quad: Ale Brewed With Plums from Sierra Nevada Brewing Co.
88 out of 100 based on 747 ratings.