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!

Abbey Belgian Style Ale - New Belgium Brewing

Not Rated.
Abbey Belgian Style AleAbbey Belgian Style Ale

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.

1,927 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 1,927
Reviews: 723
rAvg: 4
pDev: 12.5%
Wants: 145
Gots: 175 | 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:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 03-02-2002)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | Likes | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Abbey Belgian Style Ale Alström Bros
Ratings: 1,927 | Reviews: 723 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of bluemoonswoon
4.05/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

12oz bottle poured into a tulip glass.

A: Pours out a clear, golden chestnut amber and topped with a thick and foamy two inch thick head. Nice little ropes of carbonation bubbling up from the bottom of the glass, showing a little life in the beer. Nice curtains of Belgian lace decorate the wall of the glass.

D: Lovely, super sweet and super malty. Dark fruits, caramel apple, cherries with a bit of nuttiness and some candi sugary-ness.

T/MF: Tastes much like the smell, wonderfully sweet, sugary maltiness balanced by a subtle fruitiness of fresh cut apples, faint cherries, golden raisins and an underlying nuttiness that keeps the sugary sweetness from becoming overly pronounced. Mouthfeel is solid, chewy but not overly thick, yet light without feeling watery or overly bubbly, solidly constructed.

D: Another solid effort form New Belgium and one of the best in my opinion. Drinks far easier than the ABV might indicate, a nice winter time sipper that packs a complex punch.

Photo of Miketwolf21
4/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This beer gave way to a inch tall head that revealed fruit all the way in the aroma. I wanted to serve this one warmer to reveal the complex flavors. What resulted was balanced sweet, fruit flavors with a dry, warm alcohol mouth feel. A touch of licorice and smooth yeast (bread?) is revealed in the midway through my swallow. I would consider this a sipper. The flavors are pretty powerful and need to be enjoyed slowly. I can't believe this came in a sampler at the price that I got it at. Although this is not a "Wow!" beer (though close) and it doesn't demand attention, but I think they did a great job and deserves to be considered Belgian style. Heck its better than some actual Belgian Ales I have had. A must try in my opinion. I gave it such a high overall rating due to the price and lack of any direct competitors at this price level.

Update-- After another year of drinking many different belgians, the flavor profile depth of this beer is where it is clear that this is somewhat of a "imitation". The yeast profile is extremely off, seemingly NB's house yeast. The mouthfeel is too chewing. It has a large amount of bubble gum flavor that I don't remember. The malts taste like a lot came from malt extracts and candy sugar. This is a very good deal still and would be a great first dubbel style beer.

Photo of mjurney
3.63/5  rDev -9.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

My 2nd bottle, this time I've served it a little warmer.

[Appearance]: Dark amber-bronze color, clear, quite of few bubbles, creamy head, lacing is pretty good.
[Smell]: Dark fruit (plum like), banana, bready, some touch of spice (cloves and a little nutmeg).
[Taste]: Spiced banana up front, some hint of dark fruit, bready from the malt, a little hint of cloves, finish off a little earthliness from the hops.
[Mouthfeel/Finish]: Light-medium bodied, carbonation is fairly weak, finish off slightly dry and crisp, yet very smooth with some alcohol warm.
[Drinkability]: Fairly drinkable.

Photo of vdread
3.08/5  rDev -23%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

New Belgium Abbey

pours dark brown/red with a small head that left some lacing, but not much. smells of raisins, spice, alcohol. raisins and dark fruits dominate the taste. thick caramel and sickening sweetness make it difficult to enjoy. creamy and sticky on the palate. quite a strong beer. tasted like a new belgium to me. somehow they all seem to have that same artificial apricot taste. nothing really jumps out of this beer and makes me want to drink it. pretty average across the board for me.

Photo of JBogan
2.95/5  rDev -26.3%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

A nice dark mahogany color fills the glass topped by a very anemic looking head. The thin film that passes for the head leaves moderate lacing.

Aroma is of yeast, some banana and a metallic note at the finish. Kind of a lackluster smelling brew.

The taste is slightly more appealing. The aroma is joined by a hint of brown sugar, yet is all comes across in a one dimensional sort of way. Even as it warmed, it didn't open up and reveal anything new.

Mouthfeel was thinner than I'd like in a beer of this style, but still acceptable. I'd also prefer a little more carbonation.

This is a beer I might suggest to someone who's never had this style and would like to work their way up to the "big boys", or who might be on a budget. Nothing very memorable about it, there are loads of better dubbles available out there.

Photo of mdcrouser
3.73/5  rDev -6.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

That's a lovely pour - creamy and almost soapy tan head, providing a cap for the coppery-orange beer - it starts out at 3/4", and then sticks around, leaving a thick ring around the upper edge.

Like a lovely Belgian, sour and sweet on the nose, making me crave a plate of pommes frites. What a perfect combination.

Pretty decent, with a clean bitterness pervades, supporting the underlying banana, cloves, and a bit of woodiness. What's here is good, but there needs to be more.

Collected squarely on the tongue, it really hangs around for quite some time between drinks, keeping the tongue occupied. It does not though, entertain in the mouth, like a great beer should.

Though this is not my favorite style, it's still pretty drinkable, if mildly underwhelming.

Photo of scoobybrew
3.6/5  rDev -10%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A - clear deep amber color with the thick foamy head that is well retained

S - fruity yeast esters with a touch of roasted malt

T - smooth, malty with a touch of hops on the end and alcohol also noticed on the finish which is somewhat dry

M - medium-light with moderate carbonation

D - This is a decent dubbel, but perhaps not the best example - it lacks some depth.

Photo of homebrew311
4.5/5  rDev +12.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

At last... one of the beers that piqued my interest in craft beer and Belgian style beer is available in Chicago. Unfortunately it can only be purchased as a part of the latest folly pack, but I am reunited with it none the less. 12 oz bottle poured into a NB globe.

A: Pours a transparent mahogany with a bone white two finger head. There is nice head retention in this beer and it leaves lacing around the glass.

S: A bouquet of fruity notes, predominately banana followed by a spiciness similar to cloves. The smell finishes with bread and Belgian yeast

T: The banana flavors are on the forefront but not quite as in your face as in your face. Flavor is a bit sweet, notes of candi sugar and sweet malts. The flavor mellows nicely and balances well with the yeasty finish. The ABV is undetectable.

M: medium body with a nice velvety mouthfeel. Subtle carbonation. Everything is working here.

D: This is one of the better introductory Belgian style beers. NB gets a lot of flack for its flagship beer, but Abbey ale is quite a gem that seems to get forgotten. Perhaps this is due to its limited distribution, but I'm glad to say I am able to purchase it again (since my move from MO to IL). The drinkability factor is dangerous as the 7% is hard to detect.

Photo of gatornation
3.58/5  rDev -10.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

pours a dark golden color with a fresh head and lacing ..smells of apples and pears and melons with hops and malts the taste is of typical dubbel with the proprietary yeast from NB that we all know this one has the bananas,clove coriander and yeast strains but it is thin on all fronts and just average

Photo of jwc215
3.98/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks to bitterbill for this!

Best before 06 Feb 10 - Poured into glass chalice:

Pours mahogany with an off-white head that becomes wispy. Trailing lace sticks.

The smell is fruity - banana (strawberry?), apple, with caramel and some herbal spicing.

The taste is of sweet maltiness - caramel/toffee with banana and apple fruitiness. It has a dryish spicing in the finish, with a light touch of alcohol.

It has a creamy body with an effervescent touch.

It is fruitier interpretation of the style, but with a nice maltiness that doesn't become too sweet.

Photo of rhollman
4.5/5  rDev +12.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Appearance - Dark amber

Smell - Semi sweet aroma

Taste - Light, mild taste for a dubbel

Mouth Feel - Soft and creamy, slightly dry finish

Drinkability - Most Dubbel's do not taste good to me since my taste buds have not learned to enjoy astringent/harsh flavor. So, I will rate this one high because it has a mild flavor and tastes good. There is a dubbel for everyone - even me!

Photo of robbyc1
3.95/5  rDev -1.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Beautiful lush head, white like a foam party. Good lacing as it goes down. Clear amber/gold with a clean look.

Nose has the Belgian yeast there, with banana, figs, ripe fruit. Taste is subdued, with malty figs, balanced at the finish with a lingering finish.

It's a bit lighter than expected for the style, not sure if this is really a dubbel, more like a single. Soft and creamy offsets the slight wateriness, but a nice beer at this abv. Very drinkable, sippable, nothing wrong here, just maybe a better fit as a Belgian mid-dark?

Photo of hardy008
3.63/5  rDev -9.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a dark mahogany color with an off white two finger head which leaves a nice sticky lace on the side of the glass. Smell is bananas, pears, apples, and phenols. The taste is like the smell, and is lightly sweet. Medium bodied with high, tingly carbonation, this is a nice drinkable beer.

Photo of Bravo11
4.13/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 12oz bottle.

A- Dark Amber, good clarity. Very short head diminishing fast. Moderate lacing.
S- Clean, crisp semi sweet aroma.
T/M- Very good flavor. Sweet, malty, a little astringent taste but in a good way.
D- I really like this beer, highly drinkable.

Photo of garymuchow
3.7/5  rDev -7.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Looking forward to this beer based on scores and that I liked the tripel so much.
Aroma starts rich in phenols, and includes loads of banana, mild spiciness and a mild malt background. Some sweetness that blends with the spiciness.
Very attractive beer. Rich full fluffy head that takes its time to settle out and leaves plenty of reminders of its presence. Dark amber of copper and browns. Very clear.
Ya' know, I don't mind the banana in the aroma, but I don't like it in this beer. As with the aroma it's out of balance. I suppose if I store some of these that may taper out, and I may do that, but until then its distracting from the other fine flavors of this beer. Spiciness of the yeast is more apparant the warmer the drink becomes. As with the aroma it blends with the malt flavors, which aren't too sweet and lean more towards toast and very mild roast. I'm surprised by the lack of darker fruit flavors. Dryness on the finish lays heavy on the tongue and the flavors hang around for a good long time.
The fluffy heads transfers to the feel as well. Full and soft, and nicely done. Moderate body.
There are so many good qualities to this beer. Did I mention that I was distracted by the banana? Too bad cuz' the rest of the package is good.

Photo of wheatyweiss
4.15/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured from a bottle into a chalice.

Pours a moderate ruddy red with a decent head that recedes to a clumpy cap.

Aroma is slightly phenolic. Banana bread and candied fruit on the nose with a rider of alcohol.

Flavor is dusty and bready. Flavors of weiss like banana and clove with a hit of funk. The dustiness subsides to a slightly alcoholic smack and then recedes to sweet spiciness. Finsihes a bit boozey as it warms.

Mouthfel is medium to thick, slightly chewy and slick. Carbonation is just a tiny but harsh, but the level of carbo is good.

Good representation of a Dubbel, very tasty and definately repeatable.

Photo of ChopperSmith
3.95/5  rDev -1.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured from a 12 oz. bottle into a tulip glass.

Appearance: Pours a clear dark amber with white foamy head and some slight lacing as it recedes.

Smell: Sweet and spicy yeast and some nice burnt caramel malt up front. Slight fruit notes beneath.

Taste: A dark roasted maltiness up front, with some spice and sweetness on the finish. The yeast is subtle, but has some nice fermented fruit phenolics (figs, apples, bananas). A hint of coffee in the mix as well. A nice balanced flavor with some complexity.

Mouth Feel: Medium bodied, medium carbonation and a very smooth and slightly dry finish.

Drinkability: Yes, very easy drinking with a moderate ABV, so this one is very easy to session. Will definitely seek this one out again. A nice American interpretation of the Belgian Dubbel style.

Photo of bonsreeb85
4.28/5  rDev +7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

A - foamy 2 finger ivory head off my initial pour. plum colored body w/ great retention and belgian lacing

S - we have a winner! tons of fruity esters, banana, pear, and apple mostly. some serious clove and a hint of pepper. there is also a good bubblicious thing going on here i dig it! this beer smells orgasmic. dare i get my hopes up??

T - a tad dryer than i was expecting from the smell. complex flavor, but the alcohol is not as well hidden as i might like this is definately a small but noteable fault. overall though, very decent example of the style.

MF - medium full bodied, w/ tons of carbonation. this beer travels down the thoat w/ a creamy-like smoothness, but perhaps could benifit from just a bit less CO2.

D - damn good.
the lower abv.(relatively)given the style makes this even more drinkable.
god it's great to be in a state home to brewers like New Belgium that can produce fine brews that are fitting to it's name sake. Colorado love!

Photo of jxhowell
3.73/5  rDev -6.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

served in a goblet style glass this beer is dark amber with a medium tan head. You can see the active carbonation without even holding the glass up to the light.

Initial clove-like notes followed by a strong banana aroma

Notes of nuts, clove and bread followed by a drying banana flavor. The bread flavors are similar to the flavor of New Belgium Fat Tire until the clove an banana kick in on the aftertaste.

Starts off light and fizzy then grows into a rich creamy foam that dissipates on the back of your tongue

I usually don't like the banana flavors associated with some belgian yeast strains, however, this beer is well balanced and the bread, nuts and clove flavors keep everything balanced and in check. Definitely not a bad brew.

Photo of Wisconsinality
3.18/5  rDev -20.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

A- Pours a dark amber with about two and a half fingers worth of head that recedes slowly and leaves some very good lacing.
S- Smell is pretty standard for a dubbel, some sweet sugary smell with a hint of spice. Maybe a little bit of raisin or date.
T- The taste of this beer threw me off just a little bit, an almost overwhelming taste of toasted malt. Reminds me almost of Guinness. I can't really pick up anything else.
M- This is a good medium body with a little carbonation that is very smooth on the tongue.
D- Not too bad but the taste just keeps throwing me off, this isn't tasting like the average dubbel but my throat is a little soar so that could be it.

Photo of mdmako
4.45/5  rDev +11.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A - Dark mahagony with a thin head retained quite nicely. A very good looking beer!

S - A rich complex aroma of banana and possibly some other fruits with a slight spicyness.

T - Sweet yet the malt is still prominent. Partly fruity with the taste of banana. A bitter after taste full of the aforementioned flavors and a slight taste of alcohol. An excellent blend.

M - Medium and nicely carbonated for an ale of this hue.

D - Excellent! A truely enjoyable beer to drink most anytime.

Photo of Rooney107
4.1/5  rDev +2.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A- As it says on the bottle, dark mahogany. A sort of burnt red that flits and shimmers when put to light. Very small head with some lacing.

S- Very fruity: banana, plums, and boozy raisins (not unlike a mild Imperial Stout (an oxymoron), actually). It almost reminds me of a sweet merlot.

T- Definite sweet fruit flavor (banana most prominently) sweeps across the palate immediately. Other fruity characteristics often associated with wine, albeit quite sweet wine, come to mind as well. It never approaches cloying, however. Perhaps the slightest hint of alcohol and funk towards the end. Quite good.

M- Medium carbonation and appropriate mouthfeel compliment the flavor profile in exquisite fashion.

D- I could drink a few of these and be quite content for the night. A fine entry from New Belgium.

Photo of nicholasdes
4.35/5  rDev +8.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Best before Feb 2010.

Red amber and crystal clear with a thin white head that is gone already.

Great nose, wet ash with sweet ripe fruit mostly banana, bready and lite booze.

Burnt Chocolate, banana and bubblegum. I love that Belgium yeast bubblegum flavor. Nice bitter finish, amazing balance.

Airy and lite and sharp with lots of carbonation, not round and smooth, but fits it perfectly.

This would be insane with grilled red meat, nice charred lamb. I want more.

Photo of mothman
4/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured into new belgium globe glass.

Pours just over 1 finger of very slight tan head. Decent retention with splattered lace. Color is a dark mahogany copper.

Aroma: dark roasted malts, chocolate, banana. Reminds me a lot like a dunkelweisse.

Taste: big roasted malt flavor hits first. Then the chocolate and bananas hit with some cloves as well.

Mouthfeel: smooth and creamy. Only a hint of booze shows. Medium bodied with a pretty good amount of carbonation. Ends with a roasted malt aftertaste.

Overall, this is one of the better dubbels I have had, however it reminds me more of a dunkelweisse. Still pretty drinkable.

Photo of gmfessen
4.43/5  rDev +10.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured from the bottle into my Chimay chalice, beer is a deep ruby-crimson color with a thin, dissipating head. The smell is a fruit bouquet! A sweet malty backbone, slightly biscuity mixed with tropical punch. The fruitiness is still present in the taste but takes on more of a malty, licorice flavor rather than the fruit punch in the nose (no pun intended). No real hops to speak of, this one is slightly sweet from start to finish. The alcohol is covered well, only a slight mouth warming sensation is present. The mouthfeel is medium to full bodied with a mild yet active carbonation that feels heavy on the tongue. Overall, a very drinkable beer, a fine job by New Belgium.

Abbey Belgian Style Ale from New Belgium Brewing
90 out of 100 based on 1,927 ratings.