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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.

744 Reviews

(Read More)
Reviews: 744
Hads: 2,080
Avg: 4.02
pDev: 20.65%
Wants: 184
Gots: 261 | 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
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Reviews: 744 | Hads: 2,080
Photo of Sammy
4.15/5  rDev +3.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Very creamy foamy head on amber brandyish body, a bit of yeast sediment as expiration date in 2 more months. Fruity yeasty aroma and taste. Very creamy mouthfeel like whipped cream. Tangy fruitiness and hops kick finish so that aftertaste is melange of malty, yeasty and moderately bitter. Very enjoyable American version that stands up there with Ommegang and Unibroue. Only 7%.

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Photo of UCLABrewN84
4.2/5  rDev +4.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Best by 4/21/13.

Pours a clear copper with a foamy khaki head that settles to a film on top of the beer. Foamy rings of lace line the glass on the drink down. Smell is of malt, spices, Belgian yeast, and a very nice banana bread aroma. Taste is much the same with a banana bread flavor on the finish. There is a mild amount of spice bitterness on the palate with each sip. This beer has a good level of carbonation with a crisp mouthfeel. Overall, this is a very good beer with a great smell and some tasty flavors.

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Photo of metter98
4.04/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

A: The beer is clear amber in color and has a slight amount of visible carbonation. It poured with a half finger high off white head that died down, leaving a patch of bubbles in the center and a collar around the edge of the glass.
S: Moderately strong aromas of candi sugars are present in the nose.
T: Like the smell, the taste has sweet flavors of candi sugars along with some notes of dark fruits and hints of spices.
M: It feels medium-bodied on the palate and has a moderate amount of carbonation.
O: I thought that this dubbel was a good represention of of the style and wasn't overly sweet.

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Photo of StonedTrippin
4.08/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

the finest of the conventional new belgium offerings in my opinion. pours a dark brown (darker than i was anticipating), with a fluffy white head an inch or so think. smell is malt and alcohol, with that belgian yeast present and some clear bananna vibes happening. notes of toffee and subtle roasted nuts in the taste, with a faintly spiced finish. a very quaffable brew for 7 percent abv. bravo!

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Photo of Thorpe429
3.55/5  rDev -11.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

On tap at the brewery. August 2009. Reviewed from notes.

Pours an amber-red with a light tan head. Good lacing. Nose brings forward some spice with dark fruits and a bit of bread. Taste brings some fairly strong yeast characteristics to the front with some dates and raisins. Slight alcohol presence. Good body with a bit of heat. Drinks fairly well fresh but could probably use some time.

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Photo of brentk56
4.4/5  rDev +9.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Appearance: Pours a hazy dark amber color with garnet highlights; not much head, decent retention and lacing

Smell: Nice fruity aroma - bananas, plums and pears along with some peppery spice

Taste: Starts with a nice fruity flavor that builds through to the finish but remains rather dry, unlike many Belgian dubbels; nice yeasty aspect as well

Mouthfeel: Just perfect for a Belgian style - soft, medium bodied with plenty of carbonation; some warming on the finish

Drinkability: A very nice American interpretation of the Belgian style that goes in its own direction

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Photo of BEERchitect
4.02/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Candied malt, fruit flavor and savory notes abound in this- a trademark of the famed New Belgium brewery. Their Dubbel Ale is a staple in classic Belgian flavor profiling. It's simply a who's who of the taste of Belgium.

It's near perfect clarity casts only the faintest of diffusions against a bronze-ruby backdrop. The classy ale releases a dense blanket of foam that nestles the beer nicely in a cocoon of light tan froth. A slow recession to skim the beer yields intricate lacing left on the glass behind the fading beer. It's a beautiful looking ale.

Whiffs of toffee and brown sugar start the aromatic spread. But the beer's sweetness and fruit character carry complementing notes of candied malt, black cherries, caramel apples, and a tinge of red licorice. The aromas excite the senses with spiciness of white pepper, dried orange peels, and a dash of soft coriander. Earthy hops offer a soft glow of wood that simmers underneath all that fruit and spice.

Delicious tastes of brown sugar and toffee sweetness coat the tongue with a candied taste of confectioner's sugar. Hiding just beneath are the fruit flavors of apples, cherries and grapes. Richer and earthier stone fruit flavors of dates, figs, and raisins give a depth and variety of taste that exudes savory and succulent notions. Racy red wine flavors are slim but do offer vinous taste to usher in a spicy and earthy sweetness of light cinnamon, clove, and allspice. The taste is remarkably understated but complex, while retaining exemplary drinkability.

The savory ale starts off with a body that's malty and semi-rich. But it very quickly makes a turn toward dry spice, and evaporative warmth. A slow fade at middle palate never reveals its deviant turn to spicy heat late. The beer is simply way too drinkable to be so strong.

New Belgium Abbey Ale comes so close to selling the authentic Belgian character to me, but alas it reveals too much caramel sweetness and earthen yeast character that I expect from American-made Belgian beers. Where those are overly simplistic and sweet, this one doesn't go that far, but approaches the Dubbel Ale taste with somewhat timid character.

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Photo of Phyl21ca
3/5  rDev -25.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Bottle: Poured a hazy red brown colored beer with a medium head with average retention. I noticed lots of sediment floating in my glass. Aroma is quite sweet with a nice malty tone underneath. At first, I was surprised with the sweetness of this beer, which hides some of the floral malt used in this beer. The end is quietly bitter but lack some roastiness. Something is missing here, not the best dubbel I had…

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Photo of largadeer
4/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance: Dark translucent brown with copious head and lacing, a fine looking beer.

Taste & smell: Brown sugar, caramel, milk chocolate and bananas, spices and yeast. A very sweet brew in both smell and taste.

Mouthfeel & drinkability: Not too heavy, slightly thin for a dubbel, smooth and crisp effervescence.

Overall a good, solid Belgian-style dubbel, rich in flavor and very reasonably priced, especially in comparison to something imported from Belgium.

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Photo of biboergosum
3.93/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

This beer pours a very attractive reddish-copper colour, with one finger of tight sudsy pale beige head, which leaves a near-perfect latticework of lace around the glass as it drops away. It smells strongly of mashed banana, dark fruit, doughy breadiness, and mild, soft yeast. The taste is bready malt, a bit of clove, plum, date, a twinge of molasses, and dry yeast. The carbonation is moderate, but oddly noticeable at times, the body medium weight, crisp, and a bit pithy. It finishes mostly dry - biscuity and fruity.

A very nice, rounded, and enjoyable dubbel. The booze certainly doesn't show in any real way, making this a decidedly easy drinker - if that's your thing.

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Photo of BuckeyeNation
4.35/5  rDev +8.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Particulate-laden orangish bronze with a monumental head of creamysoft beige foam. The cap begins its slow motion descent as surface bubbles languidly pop, resulting in random squiggles of soapy lace. The color is on the lighter end of the dubbel scale, but is plenty pleasing to the eye.

The nose is dominated by Belgian yeast. No surprise since 'an authentic Belgian yeast strain' is in use according to the label. Clove spice is dominant. It isn't as brown malty as expected, nor as fruity. A little more power would be great.

The flavor is wonderful and changes in fascinating ways over the course of each sip. It's malty sweet with a spunky carbonation out of the chute, is darkly fruity and spicy on the backstretch and develops a deepening, expanding burst of fruit and spice--and warming alcohol--at the wire. It also improves noticeably with warming. The mouthfeel is incredibly well-mannered with a smooth richness that retains a light elegance thanks to a perfect amount of carbonation.

Abbey Belgian Style Ale (the name is too generic) is a wonderful homage to the original dubbels of Belgium. It's no Westvleteren 8, but is unquestionably the best American-brewed dubbel that has ever crossed my lips. New Belgium's best? Even though I haven't tried their entire lineup, it's hard to imagine that they could top this.

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Photo of zeff80
4.2/5  rDev +4.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - 12 oz bottle poured out an amber hue with a good white head. It left distinct lacing.

S - It smelled of malt and spices. There was also a fruity aroma (banana?).

T - The malt flavor was outstanding. Caramel flavors popped up throughout. Nice sharp spiciness

M - It is smooth and crisp. A medium-bodied brew with just a touch of alcohol warmth.

D - Very drinkable. One of New Belgium's best and a great "American try" at a dubbel.

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Photo of oberon
4.09/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a medium brown with some reddish tint with a thinner head than expected,the aromas more than make up for the lackluster appearance of this beer sweet malt and very fruity with a faint smoky-like yeastiness.Flavors of raisins and toffee really jump out at ya up front but its not overly sweet in my mind,a touch of phenolic spiciness in the finish with some warming alcohol as the beer warms a little.A fine American example of a Belgian Dubbel,I would buy again.

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Photo of mikesgroove
4.12/5  rDev +2.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Poured a nice reddish brown with a big off white head. Nice slow fade left a good quarter inch film on top. No significant lace, but good audible carbonation.

S - Smell was full of dark fruity esthers. Notes of figs and raisins were quite noticeable as well a nice well rounded belgian spiceness and a hint of pears as it warmed.

M & T - First impression was a great feel on this one. Very smooth with awesome carbonation. Very lively when sipping. Hints of figs apples, peaches, pears, raisens were all readily apparent. A slight touch of alcohol could be found but was not distracting in the least.

D - Overall a really nice belgian ale and a good quality drinker. Very sessionable and a new favorite from New Belgium for sure.

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Photo of ChainGangGuy
4.03/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

12 ounce bottle - I lost my receipt! from Total Wine & More in Kennesaw, Georgia. Well, actually, I sent it through the shredder.

Appearance: Pours out a clear, darkened amber-hued body with a largely-sized, off-white head.

Smell: Fruity, spicy, smelling of mashed bananas, golden raisins, and ground cloves coated in a variety of sugars. Teensy hint of chewing gum.

Taste: Modest tastes of caramel, brown sugar, and one lone, lost chocolate sprinkle with a background bread crust element. Tangy, ever so slightly sourish fruity, spice mix. Again, the cloves and light pepper are arm in arm with the fruitiness tasting of raisins, dates, and ripe bananas. Very faint herbal tone. As with the nose, there's a small hint of gum wandering about. The hops are incidental, at best. A little candyish sweetness, some drying action taking place, some spice and fruit on the smooth finish.

Mouthfeel: Medium-bodied. Just a hair above medium carbonation.

Overall: Dubbel perfection? No, but it's certainly one of the better American-born dubbels available and has been for quite some time.

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Photo of TMoney2591
3.9/5  rDev -3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Served in a Chimay goblet.

This is the random beer chosen to see the finish to MLB's Opening Day. It pours a clear ruby brown topped by a half-finger of dirty-cream foam. The nose comprises raisins, nutmeg, dark wheat, cinnamon, Belgian yeast, clove, fig, and a few drops of light maple syrup. The taste follows pretty closely, with the additions of black pepper, red grapes (very red wine-y thing goin' on here), and a touch of darkly-toasted rye bread. The body is a light medium, with a light moderate carbonation and a lightly syrupy feel. Overall, a pretty nice dubbel, though it doesn't warm all too well. So long as the temperature is controlled, this ain't too bad at all.

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Photo of NeroFiddled
3.92/5  rDev -2.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

New Belgium's Abbey delivers a very hazy russet brown body beneath a fair-sized head of light-tan that's lightly creamy. The head retention is average and it doesn't hold real well, but it does maintain a thin surface covering and a good collar, and it leaves some light lace about the glass. The aroma offers dark fruit (sweet dark raisins, juicy red wine), candy, light caramel malt and a subtle spiciness. It's smooth across the palate with a light-medium body and exceptionally fine-bubbled carbonation that's mildly effervescent but does no more that caress the tongue. The flavor follows the suggestions of the aroma with some additional candyish sugariness, some more fruit, some leafy hops, and a stabilizing back-bone of bitterness. It's well balanced and although the alcohol is noticeable, it actually acts as part of the flavor profile and isn't offensive at all. It finishes with dark fruit and leafy hops in a fairly long, gently lingering aftertaste.

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Photo of jlindros
3.88/5  rDev -3.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks to Optimator13.

Light fizzy head nice lacing, clear toasty amber color.

Nose plenty of Belgian, candi sugar, Belgian malts, yeast, dark raisin like fruits, some booze, light spices, cinnamon, nutmeg, etc, slight herbal decayed aroma.

Taste light aged soft malts, Belgian malts and yeast, candi sugar but light, bright spices with some cinnamon, clove like, nutmeg like, nutty malts, dried fruits with raisin, light herbal hop and herbal aged flavor almost but not really oxidized, light tin. Finishes a bit dry, semi bitter as well as some earthy herbal and light spicy hops come out, and some booze. Semi sweet but not as much as the nose.

Mouth is med to slightly heavier with good carb and warming light tingly booze.

Overall not bad, herbal hops are meh, malts are nice, decent beer.

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Photo of TheManiacalOne
3.8/5  rDev -5.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Acquired via trade from Wasatch, so a big “Thank you” goes out to him. Poured from a 12oz. bottle into a US tumbler pint glass.

A: The beer is a light reddish brown color with a large off-white head that fades slowly and leaves a thick lace on the glass.

S: The aroma is of Belgian yeast, dark fruits, spice and caramelized malt.

T: The taste is malty with flavors of dark fruit, Belgian yeast, some smokiness and a little spice. There’s a mild hops presence that brings a little balance. The after-taste is slightly bready and a little sweet.

M: Crisp and smooth, medium body, medium carbonation, clean and dry finish.

D: Tasty, goes down ok, not very filling, decent kick, good representation of style, it’s good beer to drink for a while. There are a couple of others that I might choose within the style above this one, but it’s still pretty good.

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Photo of Jason
4.49/5  rDev +11.7%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Presentation: 12 oz brown bottle with a best before date on the side of the label. Info about the brewery and beer are on the label as well.

Appearance: The loose yeast ended up making its way into the chalice though with the color being a deep leather brown it did not affect any kind of clarity. Decent lacing with a good stickage down the glass.

Smell: Creamy phenolic, crushed bananas and plums, anise and black pepper with mildly solvent alcohol in the back.

Taste & Mouthfeel: Medium bodied with a creamy backing, turbid crispness ends with a sharp bite. Malty with ripe fruit all over, playful phenolics help to balance. Hard pinch of alcohol shows its 7% abv. Some brown bread in the finish, semi-dry with a slowly fading bitterness.

Notes: Very drinkable and comparable to the real Trappist brews. WOW! What an amazing American brewed Belgian Style beer … I hope to have this beer in the Boston area some day soon as one bottle was just a tease.

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Photo of kojevergas
3.52/5  rDev -12.4%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.5

Best before: "03Aug14." 7% ABV. 12 fl oz brown glass bottle with simple appealing label art and iconic red/orange branded pry-off pressure cap acquired at a local grocery store and served into an Avery stem-tulip in low altitude Austin, Texas. Reviewed live. Expectations are high given its current 90 rating as well as the brewery, whose Trippel [sic] I quite like. Reviewed as a dubbel since the label's description identifies it as such.

Served cold - straight from the fridge - and allowed to warm over the course of consumption. Side-poured with standard vigor as no carbonation issues are anticipated.

A: No bubble show forms as it's poured.

Pours a one finger wide head of pale khaki colour. Nice creaminess and thickness. Has a nice soft complexion. Even smooth consistency. Head retention is pretty good for the above average ABV - about 4-5 minutes. Nice albeit inconsistent lacing clings to the sides of the glass as the head recedes. It's a supple appealing head overall.

Body colour is a dark translucent semitransparent amber of average vibrance. Clean; no floating yeast particles or sediment is visible. Appears adequately carbonated.

Overall, it's an appealing appearance for a dubbel and I'm looking forward to the first sip, but it doesn't hold a candle to the appearances of the best traditional beers in the style.

Not unique or special. There are no egregious flaws.

Sm: Has a definite Belgian yeast vibe. Candi sugar, plum, prune, Belgian amber malts, lovely banana notes, cream, and light bready malts. It's pretty impressive for a dubbel at this price point; I'm surprised. Definitely fits into style conventions.

No hop profile, overt alcohol, or off-notes are detectable.

A pleasant, inviting aroma of mild strength. Really solid for a dubbel. I'm craving the first sip. The subtle banana and luscious plum notes are simply fantastic.

Mf/T: Has a lovely creamy texture with an aptly medium body and comforting feel on the palate. Well-carbonated, with apt thickness and weight. Soft, smooth, and wet without feeling weak. Has good overall presence on the palate and the texture suits the taste quite well. Supple and almost refreshing. Very approachable.

Not oily, gushed, hot, boozy, astringent, or harsh.

Banana and plum dominate this surprisingly well-balanced flavour profile. The malty core is a great complement to the more refined notes, offering Belgian amber and brown malts alongside some light bready character and subtly integrated caramel. Has unexpected subtlety and some fair complexity, but in terms of complexity and intricacy relative to traditional examples of the style, it's lackluster.

Still, for a dubbel at this price point which is so widely available, I'm taken aback by its quality. Above average depth of flavour. Average duration and intensity of flavour. Build is cohesive but not gestalt.

Dr: Very drinkable; I'll have no trouble finishing this bottle and I look forward to doing so. Hides its ABV pretty well. A surprisingly good seasonal brew from New Belgium that I'll look forward to picking up again in the future. Probably the best widely available U.S.-brewed example of the style. Well worth trying. Amongst New Belgium's finest mainstream efforts - right up there with Trippel [sic].

Borderline B-/B

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Photo of RblWthACoz
4.35/5  rDev +8.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Wow. Okay. A home run from NB. Pours a slightly cloudy ruby. Nose is very like, well, a Belgian brew. Yeasty with a sweet and citric tone. Taste is very good. Smooth and even. You get that slightly sweet edge that comes and goes with the rolling of the flavors. Overall a very good brew I think. Recently I was getting so irritated at the lack of interesting stuff from NB that I was about to just write the whole brewery off. But this one is redemption in a bottle. Damn good. The feel is slightly thick, but a bit lighter than some other Belgian brews. Definitely drinkable.

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Photo of russpowell
4.35/5  rDev +8.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours almost clear caramel with a lively/fluffy white head , Very good head retention and impressive lacing

Smell: Yeast, mustiness, malt faint hint of phenoylic (sp) tones

Taste: Fruitiness/yeastiness, woody taste more like popsicle stick than oakiness. Some choclate notes also noticed up front with appreciable dryness and plum-like notes. Slight sourness, alcohol & dryness come through in the finish.

MF: Chewy enough with a effervesicent (sp?) presence that helps bring out the beer subtleness

Drinkable for its sytle, which I enjoy, but not a session quaffer to me. Holds its own with its oldworld brothers/cousins

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Photo of WVbeergeek
4.3/5  rDev +7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Appearance: Deep ruby brown with a nice tan head decent sized leaves behind Belgian style lacing. Aroma: Candi sugar, plums, nice toasted malts it ties all the tones together very well. Taste: Crisp balance alcohol, fruit esters, darker malts, with sweet candi sugar and soft water. Mouthfeel: Medium body but very refreshing decent carbonation. Drinkability: Not as complex as some dubbels out there but this one does an awesome job of making it incredibly satisfying and drinkable, hell yeah.

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Photo of superspak
4.1/5  rDev +2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

12 ounce bottle into signature globe glass, best before 9/21/2014. Pours lightly cloudy deep reddish copper color with a 1-2 finger fairly dense light khaki head with good retention, that reduces to a small cap that lingers. Nice soapy lacing clings on the glass, with a good amount of streaming carbonation. Aromas of caramel, toast, biscuit, light chocolate, raisin, plum, banana, clove, pepper, candi sugar, herbal, and yeast earthiness. Very nice aromas with good balance and complexity of fruity/spicy yeast ester and dark/bready malt notes; with good strength. Taste of big caramel, toast, biscuit, light chocolate, raisin, plum, banana, clove, pepper, candi sugar, herbal, and yeast earthiness. Light earthy bitterness and moderate yeast spice on the finish; with lingering notes of caramel, toast, biscuit, light chocolate, raisin, plum, banana, clove, pepper, herbal, and yeast earthiness on the finish for a good bit. Very nice complexity of fruity/spicy yeast and dark/bready malts; with a great malt/yeast balance and zero cloying flavors after the finish. Medium-high carbonation and medium bodied; with a very smooth, crisp, and lightly bready/chalky mouthfeel that is nice. Alcohol is well hidden with a slight warming present after the finish. Overall this is an excellent dubbel style. All around great balance and complexity of fruity/spicy yeast and dark/bready malt flavors; and very smooth and crisp to drink. A very enjoyable offering.

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Abbey Belgian Style Ale from New Belgium Brewing
90 out of 100 based on 744 ratings.