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Abbey Belgian Style Ale - New Belgium Brewing

Not Rated.
Abbey Belgian Style AleAbbey Belgian Style Ale

Educational use only; do not reuse.

747 Reviews

(Read More)
Reviews: 747
Hads: 2,093
Avg: 4.01
pDev: 20.7%
Wants: 187
Gots: 268 | FT: 1
Brewed by:
New Belgium Brewing visit their website
Colorado, United States

Style | ABV
Dubbel |  7.00% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 03-02-2002

No notes at this time.
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Abbey Belgian Style Ale Alström Bros
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Reviews: 747 | Hads: 2,093
Photo of K_schrim
4.74/5  rDev +18.2%
look: 4.75 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.75

Poured into tulip glass. Color is a very pretty dark red/Amber. Light tan head. The SMELL, THOUGH!!! It smelled like I was 19 years old in a German pub again! Taste-German pub! Maybe I've had this before? Feel-meh. Kinda thin. I'm in love, though, and will soon invest in a sixer.

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Photo of Libeertarian
3.96/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

For a time, as I was still cutting my teeth, this may have been my favorite beer. Well since then, quite recently in fact, they have changed the recipe. That's okay, nothing lasts forever. I'm sure the new one will still be worthy of its name. I am currently reviewing the old recipe ("expires" 20th of September, 2015), but I intend to update this review for a comparison with the new ("expires" 19th of June, 2016 or later) very soon (and to do the same with NB's Trippel). I am hoping they will be close enough to where I won't have to get too creative with my number rating. Here goes:

Old recipe first. Poured into New Belgium short chalice that was gifted to me at a City Vineyard educational tasting here in Billings, Montana. Appears a mostly clear dark brownish copper, nearly ruby. It's quite bubbly with fine creamy tan head of decent retention. Lace is thick, but wet and heavy, doesn't stay for long. Smells like good banana nut bread. Also a bit phenolic, stewy, spicy, boozey, though hardly any vinegar. Taste has same robust phenolic presence and slight alcoholic edge to it, but both are tamed by strong flavors of caramel, dark fruits, overripe banana, bread crust, light toastiness. Retro-olfaction and aftertaste consist primarily of clove notes and secondarily of peppercorn. In any case, both are more powerful than the earthy, leafy, tea-like hops in the finish. Good balance here and an excellent introductory Belgian style ale. Fuller end of medium, very smooth, slick, and sloshy, with fair amount of gentler sudsy carbonation and cheek-heating charm.

Now for the new recipe, reviewing only about a day later. Looks the same. On the nose I can detect more of a rubber band or brewers yeast aroma, and less banana nut bread. Other notes are all present, but more subdued. Honestly, it's hard to tell the difference in the taste without doing a literal side by side comparison. Caramel base. Less fruit and banana and therefore more bread and toast. And then more alcohol and peppercorn shining through. Also faint Band-Aid or medicinal notes that I don't think were here before. Feels fuller and more heavily laden with carbonation, but on the whole about the same. Truly, there's not enough of a difference here, on my palate, to modify my number rating.

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Photo of ChicagoPartisan
4.6/5  rDev +14.7%
look: 5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75


Standard pint glass

A – A beautiful dark redish color. Slight head, maybe a quarter of an inch. Moderate carbonation.

S – Rich plums shine through the rest. Hints of cherry. Fairly mute.

T – Cherries dominate with a strong chocolate presence on the back end. Subdued is notes of raisin and dried plum. Incredible.

M – Medium bodied. Fairly wet on the palate.

O – What an excellent selection. I am fairly unacquainted with the style, but an excellent beer overall. Drinks like a warmer. Perfect for a cold evening in late Fall.

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Photo of stlfatguy
3.84/5  rDev -4.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured a cola color with a nice red tint when it hits the light. Khaki colored head was smooth with nice lacing but Didn't last. Smell was sweet, fresh, spicy... but not overpowering, very smooth. Taste was the same. Very smooth and balanced. Hints of cinnamon bread maybe. Spicy but sweet. Light malt, peppery aftertaste builds as you drink. Compared to other Belgians, this one had less banana yeast flavor (which is fine with me) although it was still present. Alcohol was warming but not overpowering. Not my favorite style, but this one was nice.

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Photo of sculls65
4.18/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

A nice Belgian . deep amber color. Smells of banana raisin brown sugar. The yeast dominates the flavor. Banana, raisin, pepper before finishing with dry bread notes from the malts. An excellent choice.

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Photo of infinitebruner
3.68/5  rDev -8.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

July 8, 2015

12 oz bottle, tulip glass

A – Very deep amber, basically mahogany but extremely clear, though dark. Off-white moussy foam sits on top, with long retention, never fully dissipating.

S – Plums and raisins with some light chocolate and low, rich caramel and toffee. A minor touch of cherries. Some light herbal hopping.

T – Light chocolate and caramel, and subdued plums and cherries. Very low herbal-floral hopping. Only a bit of hop bitterness.

M – Medium to medium-full body with moderate, lightly sudsy carbonation. Somewhat juicy up front and mildly dry the rest of the way. Only light bitterness.

O – A valiant attempt to duplicate the style but overall a bit too subdued, unremarkable. Serviceable, but not a great beer.

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Photo of pat61
4.75/5  rDev +18.5%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

L: Brilliant dark amber to brown under a 2” cream colored foam collar. Persistent and lacy.
S: Earthy hops, faint chocolate, hints of fruit cake.
T: Malty sweetness wrapped in a big moist chewy brown fruit cake with faint ginger, cinnamon and cardamom, some raisins, a hint of plum and pepper, finishes dry with a bit of grain. Layered and complex.
F: Very creamy, above average soft carbonation, medium body.
O: A very nicely done dubel.

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Photo of Brutaltruth
4.18/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Enjoyed in a Chimay snifter from the 12 oz bottle. This FINE dubbel pours a very clear dark reddish brown with a solid light tan head of dissipating foam that settles to a nice 1/2" thick pool of foam and nice lacing. Nose of brown sugars, raisins, strong banana notes from the yeast, light spice, and a moderate grain alcohol note. Flavors follow the nose with brown sugars and banana ester notes to all sides, raisins, plums, and a light nutmeg note comes through on the back and aftertaste making for a fantastic symposium of a Belgian done right in America. Warmth adds to the ester notes from the yeast with a moderately dry finish yet with a creamy smooth mouth feel from good carbonation. An A plus in my book!


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Photo of car2052
4.4/5  rDev +9.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

12 oz. bottle poured into Belgian goblet. (Left in freezer a little too long)

A: Clear deep garnet, with a inch of light tan head.
S: Nice banana from the yeast, caramelization, dark sweet bread, slightly burnt aroma. A little vanilla too.
T: Reminds me of a sweet dark bread with a spice. A lot of caramel, raisin, vanilla, banana, and a whiff of bourbon/rum. Nice roasted malt.
M: Thick side of medium. Bitterness is low.
O: Great beer with a nice sweetness to it. I liked this better than the Ommegang. Easier-drinking.

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Photo of gmossii
4.07/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

I really wish I have tasted an actual Belgian Dubbel so I'd have a true benchmark of a Dubbel; however, I have to say that this is a very good beer. You can truly tell that there is a detailed blend of six different malts. It results in an incrediblely smooth beer that is almost like a malt ball in a glass. This is also a nice change to the IPA dominated market right now.

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Photo of craftbeersweden
4/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Dark copper color with a beige head.

Nose: Caramel malt, dried fruit, yeast, bread, resin and banana.
Taste: About the same as the aroma, dried fruit, caramel malt, brown sugar, spice, cinnamon and bread.
Body: Medium, complex body with a beatiful softness. I really like this Dubbel!

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Photo of BeerWithMike
4.09/5  rDev +2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Sampling right now on 3/16/15. Bottle chilled down to 36 degrees F in my beer cooler and poured in to a vintage 10 ounce pilsner glass.

Brew pours a dark amber in color with close to a 1-finger off-white head. A decent amount of lacing is seen when sipped. The aroma is of spices and burnt brown sugar. Pretty much is said for the taste as with a hint of bready yeast with a light hint of floral hops also. Actually very smooth to drink with no bitter or hoppy finish. Medium-bodied with perfect carbonation. Overall, Fat Tire did a great job on this brew style.

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Photo of colingaiser
3.74/5  rDev -6.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.75

Poured from bottle into nonic pint glass...

L: A very attractive, transparent and light caramel-brown hue, with a sticky two-finger head.

S: A unique aroma with notes of burnt brown sugar, baking spices, some floral undertones (like a flower shop!), and lingering breadiness. Beautifully balanced.

T: Like the aroma, nice and complex -- the malt provides a warming, sweet booziness, and there's a spicy combo of pepper, cinnamon, and cloves. However, what's most surprising is the presence of the floral notes, like some kind of lingering lavender perfume. It's a taste that's admirable, yet it's not grabbing me.

F: A little thin, like a flat cola. There's a moderate amount of carbonation but the mouthfeel doesn't offer anything invigorating. Just fine.

O: I respect this beer more than I love it. There's a unique grab-bag of flavors and aromas here, but I think maybe the floral, perfume-like characteristics are a TAD too prominent. Overall though, a good, classy brew.

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Photo of Fear4Beer
4.66/5  rDev +16.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

An amazing American version of a Belgium beer. There is SO much that this beer gets right. The beer pours beautifully with at least a two finger head, it has a beautiful shade of redish brown liquid, and it has a GREAT mouth feel (it isn't watered down). It feels like an authentic Belgium beer (that costs about $6+ a bottle). This beer is priced perfectly, wow, so much bang for the buck! I can get it for $1.50 a bottle. It has 7% abv too! The alcohol is masked: you can feel the warmth of it but not really a taste of alcohol.

The taste is of malt, banana, bubble gum (you can taste it when you burp :-D ), pepper, and yeast.

This is one of the best bang for your buck beers in America. I'm in love with this stuff.

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Photo of tekstr1der
4.38/5  rDev +9.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Deep copper pour with creamy clingy head. Aromas of caramel, bread, yeast, and esters. Flavor is somewhat alcoholic, with heavy malt presence balanced by delicate hops. Somewhat sweet finish has me sipping more...

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Photo of hokieguy95
4.57/5  rDev +14%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Sampled from a bottle in a snifter glass

Nice one finger head that quickly dissipates. Decent lacing but nothing to get overly excited about. Very clear reddish brown hues. No sign of Belgian yeast clumps. lighter in color than most Dubbels I've tried.

Wonderful strong nose with scents of cinnamon and dark fruits and a little banana creeping in. Belgian yeast is upfront and present.

Taste is all spicey up front cinnamon and peppery, with a hint of rumminess. Extremely fruity with a bit of warming alcohol on the finish. Very complex flavor.

mouthfeel is medium body and less dry than other Belgians I have sampled

One great American example of the Abbey/Trappiste style Dubbel. Being a Belgian fan, this is definitely a must try regularly. Now one of my go to Dubbel's.

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Photo of cellojon
3.99/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Poured from 12oz bottle into a large wine glass

Red-amber, pristinely clear, Foamy with good lacing

overripe fruit, bubblegum

That belgian yeasty flavor with a floral maltiness moves into not-overwhelming bitter on the sides of tongue together with a slight alcohol bite. Strong bread in the finish with the tartness hanging on a bit.

Initially sensation on the tongue is the carbonation, even before tasting. Crispy.

Overall: This one is definitely worth buying. Good beer for a good price.

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Photo of DeepBrew
3.96/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Poured from 12oz bottle into chalice.

A: Dark amber color, clear. Medium-low foam, that dissipates relatively quickly and leaves behind some lacing.

S: Inviting spice and yeasty smell throughout.

T: Dark fruit and malt first, then spice and light bitter. The spice and bitter linger in the aftertaste.

M: Medium with some creaminess. The booze creeps up toward the end.

O: Well executed dubbel, good and drinkable.

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Photo of Darkmagus82
4.03/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from bottle into a chalice glass

Appearance – The beer pours a deep mahogany color with some ruby highlights and a small off white head of fizzy foam. The head fades rather fast leaving a bit of foamy lace on the sides of the glass.

Smell – The aroma of the beer is huge of a nice big fruity smell of a darker fruit nature, with plenty of raisin, plum, and some cherry. Along with these aromas are a nice blend of a yeasty smell as well as some aromas of a more roasted malt smell with some aromas of a coriander and clove mixed in along side. A little bit of a boozy smell is there as well, creating a nice fruity and warming dubbel aroma overall.

Taste – The taste begins with a good dark fruit flavor of raisin and plum predominantly, with some lighter hints of cherry as well. Along with the fruit there is a little bit of a roasted taste as well as a very light boozy flavor. As the taste advances, the booziness increases all while fruitiness decays a little bit. At the same time, some yeast and spice of coriander and clove and a hint of banana and bubblegum come to the tongue. Some boozy tastes and a resurgence of the dark fruit occur at the end, leaving one with a fruity and warming dubbel flavor to linger on the tongue.

Mouthfeel – The body of the beer is on the average side in terms of thickness and creaminess with a carbonation level that is rather average as well. For the mix of fruity, yeasty, and boozy flavor of the brew, the feel is rather nice and does a good job of balancing the booze with the sweet fruit, making for a good moderate pace drinking dubbel.

Overall – A rather nice Abbey style ale overall with a nice drinkability and a good blend of fruit, booze, and yeasty spice. A rather well done dubbel that is quite nicely priced. A good go to dubbel style ale.

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Photo of 2beersaday-stronglikebull
4.48/5  rDev +11.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Dark Amber like honey with creamy head and moderate lacing, smells fantastic, like banana bread. Taste clove, banana candy, breads. Mouthfeel carbonated, faint stickiness. Overall, I really enjoyed this, would go great with a bananas foster dessert.

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Photo of scootny
4.39/5  rDev +9.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A surprisingly clear light red brown. Light tan head of decent size. Spots and streaks here and there. Clumps of yeast in the bottom of my glass. Nose is sublime. Lots of banana, dark fruits, sugary malted toffee. A boot of alcohol and pepper spice. Taste continues the excellent nose. Toffee flavored malt front. Figs and raisins flow next. Herbaceous biting bitterness gives a bit of a jolt but it works so well. A light coffee lingers with mocha notes as it fades to hops. Feel is to notch. Full and smooth with a creamy carbonation. Not a session ale but quite easy drinking. A superb dubbel period. Love this one.

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Photo of Johyka
4.3/5  rDev +7.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

L: Poured into a pint glass, decent head (poured it too lightly) with a good amount of lacing. Very sticky lace, clings on for dear life! Color is dark brown, little bit of amber and gold, seeing a tinge of sienna maybe?

S: Delicious. Like a frozen banana mixed with caramel, with a handful of raisins. Just enough sweetness to make my mouth water.

T: Smoky, caramel, lots of candied banana (Laffy Taffy-esque). A good amount of bread, but very candy-like. Fantastic taste... But has a very slightly bitter, medicinal, finish.

F: Very smooth, hit of carbonation at the front of the palate and smooths out in the middle and end.

Overall: Very nice, smooth beer to drink on a cold night in Colorado. Smells fantastic, looks like a BEER, and it tastes too good to be mass produced from New Belgium. I love it, and will drink it until the springtime comes around!

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Photo of hophugger
3.97/5  rDev -1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A beautiful deep, dark golden-brown. Bubbles, bubbles, bubbles. Nice tan head with pretty nice lacing. Aroma is of fresh baked muffins, with hints of banana and candy. I am not a huge fan, nor an expert on this style of beer, but I will have to say, this is one nice brew. Taste is spectacular with fresh baked pastry and sweet malt notes. I also get some banana and molasses also. Feels, light on the palate with some minor alcohol twang, but that's ok, this is a nice beer and very drinkable !

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Photo of Pantalones
4.54/5  rDev +13.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

My second (and unfortunately, last) bottle of this from the Folly pack I picked up earlier. Poured into a standard pint glass, probably a bit quicker than I should have since the head came thiiiiis close to overflowing! Still managed to fit almost all of the beer in the glass... but just barely, there was a lot of head on this one.

Color is a nice dark brown, with a light tan head. With the help of a light I can see little bubbles streaming up from the bottom, though it's dark enough that I can't make them out without any extra light. I can actually hear the fizzing of bubbles, even a couple minutes after the beer is poured when the head is starting to shrink away a bit. Head shrinks into more of a thin "coating" on top after a while, but doesn't ever vanish entirely. As I drink more of the beer, wide bubbly trails are left behind on the inside of the glass. To put it simply, this is a very nice-looking beer.

Smells... good! Not in a "this is regular beer, but it's a good one" sort of way, but in a way that reminds me more of banana bread. Dark toasty banana bread. Actually, nearing the end of the glass I noticed just a bit of a coffee-like smell too. I don't drink coffee, but I do think some of it smells pretty nice, so there's another plus for tnis one there.

Taste is mostly toasty and bready to start with, but there's definitely a lot of banana-like flavor in there too. The banana seems to be kicking in earlier this time compared to the first one I had. There's also another interesting sweet flavor (or two?) that pops up sometimes; reminds me of tropical fruit flavored bubblegum or cotton candy or a mixture of the two. But interestingly, it never seems overly sweet to me. It's like... sweet flavors but without the "feeling" of sweetness, if that makes any sense. Also, it makes my burps taste like banana bread.

...And for the first time I think I'm starting to "get" the concept of mouthfeel. This feels both substantial and easy to drink all at once, somehow. It's not watery-feeling but at the same time there's no harsh fizziness or any other weird feelings, just a very slight warmth sometimes (from the 7% alcohol, I assume.) It's a beer I drink slow because I want to taste it for as long as possible, not because going faster would be unpleasant.

Basically... I can't think of anything I don't like about this beer. I don't believe in "perfect" (hence my unwillingness to hand out 5's...) and I'm sure I'll probably find beers I like more eventually, but this is one of the few beers that's really *amazed* me so far--and even better than that, it was still amazing the second time I had it! I look forward to trying more of the darker Belgian-style ales (and having this one again!) in the future.

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Photo of Gajo74
4.45/5  rDev +11%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Pours a dark copper almost brown color with a thick head that dissipates to ring like lace. Great aroma! Maple syrup, bannanas, a boozy liqueur like feel and even a hint of coffee. Taste is fruity, malty sweet and with a dry boozy finish. Good feel. Lively carbonation that settles as the drink warms. This is my first foray into New Belgium Brewing co. and am thus far impressed. A good interpretation of Belgian Dubbel!

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Abbey Belgian Style Ale from New Belgium Brewing
90 out of 100 based on 747 ratings.