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Westmalle Trappist Dubbel - Brouwerij Westmalle

Not Rated.
Westmalle Trappist DubbelWestmalle Trappist Dubbel

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
93
outstanding

2,250 Ratings
THE BROS
97
world-class

(view ratings)
Ratings: 2,250
Reviews: 1,128
rAvg: 4.17
pDev: 10.79%
Wants: 135
Gots: 202 | FT: 2
Brewed by:
Brouwerij Westmalle visit their website
Belgium

Style | ABV
Dubbel |  7.00% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 11-25-2000)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 2,250 | Reviews: 1,128 | Display Reviews Only:
Reviews by basica:
Photo of basica
4.83/5  rDev +15.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Westmalle Dubbel (AGED: circa 1980s) (Rating 9.5/10) - 6.5 ABV - 16 August 2007

2 days ago I had a Westmalle Dubbel which appears to be from the 90s and I felt that it was past its prime but perhaps that may not be the case. More important would be how the beer had aged over time. This Dubbel from the 80s (or maybe 90s?) had no label on the bottle;
in place was a extrusion of the "ABDU WESTMALLE" text. There was also no sludge and no sediments during the pour at all. The only sign of age is the little "ring" on the bottle neck where the beer level is before pouring. The underside of the cap was intact; the one I had 2 days ago had slight rust though not in the main area of the cap but still it was not looking too good. This aged Westmalle poured out dark ruby brown like any Westmalle Dubbel but without any head; all that was present was a nice ring lacing; no sediments at all. It smells of strong fruits (mainly plums and raisins) and also the typical Westmalle smell. It tasted strongly of plums, raisins and very subtle yeastiness and very slight bitterness on the finish. The entry had a certain alcohol strength which I could fully appreciate and it was backed with a strong dark fruity entry as well. The body was not as thick as I would have liked but this entry
strength as well as the very apt level of carbonation topped things out and it is not thin nor even the slightest watered down which was what I felt about the 1990s vintage which I tried 2 days ago. It was very smooth as well and I really enjoyed it. The after taste was lasting; way more lasting than the one I had 2 days ago and the fruits involved are again typical of the Westmalle Dubbel: Plums, dark grapes, Raisins and maybe other dark fruits like dates, etc; very fruity and tasty. Of course the entire package is all mellow and pleasant but not detracting from the strength and character that is of essence for a trappist ale. I think this
beer held up very well over the years and I can really appreciate it. Proper aging is of essence; seems to me the 90s vintage I had 2 days ago was badly aged.


Westmalle Dubbel (AGED: circa 1990s) (Rating 9/10) - 6.5 ABV - 14 August 2007

This is an aged Westmalle Dubbel, with the older cap as well; this is probably my first old beer. I estimate that it is from the 90s but I am not too sure. The bottle was a little hard to crack and when I got it off I immediately smell a strong fruity aroma comprising of dark fruits like plums, grapes, etc. The pour left a slightly less than 1 finger stable creamy head which stayed for quite a bit. The smell was a very strong fruity smell and so was the taste but it was not as strong as I would expect it to be. Fruity notes like plums and grapes are definitely more pronounced with its age and the yeasty notes on the finish were really light and subtle. The taste is very mellow and soothing and generally very identifiable as the Westmalle taste from my previous experiences with the Westmalle Dubbel. I think the fruitiness may be a little stronger than the 2003 or 2004 vintage version that I had but in terms of mouthfeel it seems to be falling short as the body has became thin and is probably between medium to light body which makes it feel a little watered down. Had the body been thicker, it would probably have been lovely but I guess at this age, this Westmalle may be a little past its prime but I
am not really sure, to be honest. The after taste was strong and fairly lasting but not as lasting as I would like it to be. Something that made me feel a little uncomfortable was the sludge that formed in the bottle itself along with the sediment flakes. I had the flakes scooped up before I drank the beer. I guess it is normal to have these flakes around specially at that age but I guess I would do without it. :)

basica, Aug 15, 2007
More User Reviews:
Photo of oberon
3.9/5  rDev -6.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Pours a darker shade of brown with a nice fluffy/sticky head you can tell this well made by the pour alone.Anyways I get a deep brown sugar aroma a red wine hint almost like a port wine.Taste of spiced cake and raisins,very rich tasting.A little harsh in the mouth though wasnt as smooth and creamy as expected.Aroma and flavor wise a real top notch brew but in drinkability and mouthfeel it lacks in my opinion.

oberon, Apr 20, 2004
Photo of RoyalT
4.43/5  rDev +6.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Appearance - Nice, deep cloudy brown color with a decent tan head that shrank rather quickly without a trace.

Smell – Rich malt aroma with some spice and the classic burnt caramel tones.

Taste – Big malt, complimented nicely with banana, some kind of dark fruit (maybe plums, dates, or even tobacco – I like ADR’S, “raisins, grapes, and currents,” comment), and light chocolate undertones. This is a complex, well-balanced brew.

Mouthfeel – Excellent! The carbonation is just right, IMO, and the body is exceptionally smooth. Personally, I think that this is the beer’s strongest quality.

Drinkability – Something this smooth and this complex is awesome. It goes down easy and keeps one entertained.

Comments – I tend to enjoy beers that are smooth yet complex, so this one suited me just fine.

Update – This was the 14th beer that I reviewed on the site so figured it might be worthwhile to re-review in 2004.

I read one review that described it as, “bananas foster” and that hit the nail on the head for me. There are some light alcohol notes and burnt malt, but the chocolate and banana are in perfect harmony with this beer and cannot be ignored. This really is a terrific ale.

I stand by my ratings from the initial taste and didn’t actually change the score of this beer, but I will say after trying over 200 Belgian Ales since the first review it really is one of the best offerings of the style on the market.

RoyalT, Aug 09, 2003
Photo of DaPeculierDane
3.68/5  rDev -11.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

11/25/05 on label. Pours a bubbly raison brown. Aroma is like a Fig Newten and some raisins. Lots of dark brown particulate matter suspended amongst the aggressive carbonation. Taste is less sweet then most other well known dubbels but less complicated and interesting as well. It’s rather underwhelming but one strong point is the lively carbonation. That in combination with the moderated sweetness makes this one very drinkable.

DaPeculierDane, Feb 20, 2006
Photo of DanGeo
4/5  rDev -4.1%

DanGeo, Apr 26, 2014
Photo of tectactoe
4/5  rDev -4.1%

tectactoe, Aug 04, 2012
Photo of ricke
4.03/5  rDev -3.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Serving date: 2009-02-19. Served in tulip.

Presentation: 330 ml bottle with the trappist collar around the neck. Freshness date (best before 2010-11-12) and glassware recommendations printed on the label.

Appearance: A very deep ruby color. It looks fantastic when held to a light. Develops a huge, 3 finger light brown head that sticks around for a good while. Some lacings and plenty of foam linger on.

Smell: Lovely smell of fresh fruit. Some yeast aromas, going towards the smell of banana, as well. Plenty of sweet notes from malts and chocolate.

Taste: Plenty of sweet malts and fruit - mostly redcurrants and banana. Then, a tarter fruitiness - like red apples just a little unripe, or just apple peel - appears. A gentle spiciness and soothing chocolate flavors round things off. The finish has a very mild bitterness and a restrained hop character, is somewhat spicy and slightly tart (but by no means sours). The alcohol is warming.

Mouthfeel: Medium body. Plenty of carbonation. Slightly coarse and crisp, but still rather smooth.

Drinkability: The fruit character in this one is just amazing, great balance between sweetness and tartness - very refreshing. Truly complex and well balanced. Perhaps, I would have liked just a little more bite in the finish.

ricke, Feb 20, 2009
Photo of t2grogan
4/5  rDev -4.1%

t2grogan, Oct 08, 2014
Photo of MadScientist
4.36/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A: A copper colored beer with a light haze. The head is low but persistent, made of light tan, creamy bubbles.

S: A strong raisin aroma with a decent amount of caramel malt aroma. There is a light vinous, wine-like character. There is a light bit of fruitiness, enough to let you know that Belgian yeast is part of the mix but not much in the way of spice; the fruit is a low banana note. No hop aroma. There is a light floral alcohol aroma as well.

T: A complex malty sweetness that part toffee, caramel and raisin with a bit of cocoa. The raisin flavor is moderately-strong with a bit of other dried fruits as well. There is a moderately-light hops bitterness. The balance is about even and the finish is towards the dry with a fruity and malty aftertaste.

M: A soft mouthfeel having a medium-full bodied with moderately-high carbonation and a light alcohol warmth.

O: A complex, malty beer.

MadScientist, Jan 18, 2013
Photo of Zakk
4.5/5  rDev +7.9%

Zakk, Jun 06, 2012
Photo of tbryan5
4.25/5  rDev +1.9%

tbryan5, Jun 26, 2013
Photo of JacobMutberg
4.25/5  rDev +1.9%

JacobMutberg, Oct 11, 2012
Photo of nuggetnectar01
4.13/5  rDev -1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours a dark brown color with a fluffy two finger head that fades away rather slowly leaving lacing all throughout the glass.

Smells of sweet candy sugar, fruity esters, spices, slight alcohol warmness,brown bread pulled out of the oven.

Slight spicy upfront with a hint of sweetness and finishes off with a tad bit of dryness. Amazing how you can always tell when your drinking a belgian beer.

Medium bodied, smooth and velvet like with right amount of carbonation.

Nice drinkability on this one.

nuggetnectar01, May 09, 2009
Photo of JMD71
3.95/5  rDev -5.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Appearance: Huge 3 fingers of tannish head. Very carbonated. There's a nice bubbly texture on the head when poured which draws back after a few minutes leaving nice lacing on the glass.

Smell: Rich caramel & malt strong in the aroma. Hints of earthy fruits such as dates, raisins, & prunes. Slight cherry aroma somewhere?

Taste: Like the aroma, the flavor is rich with raisins & dates. Warming with a slight alcohol touch in the finish. Very subtle. Very well balanced. Finishes crisp...

Mouthfeel: Slightly thick & cloying, but not in a bad way. Expected in this style. Very warming, but carbonation lends a criso, clean feeling.

Drinkability: This is VERY drinkable from my point of view! I could live on this. It is well balances between maltiness, fruitiness, & alcohol. Not overpoweringly rich or sweet.

Comments: I truly enjoyed this all the way through the glass. Each sip seemed to be better than the last. By the first true Belgain dubbel I've reviewed, this was everything I had expected.

JMD71, Apr 14, 2006
Photo of steelerguy
4.08/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A - Poured a dark mahogany with an epic just off-white head, somewhat rocky in the middle but very frothy on top and where the head meets the beer. Amber tones around the outside of the glass, quite attractive. Lasting head, lots of lace, great looking beer.

S - Caramel malt mostly with some dark fruit smell, slightly sweet, but overall kind of muted.

T - A lot of the smell, caramel malt, raisins, and a tart cherry flavor. A little more bitterness in the finish than I was expecting but I like hops. No very complex, but pleasant and refreshing with the cherry tang, a little bite from the carbonation, and some cleansing hop bitterness.

M - Dry, crisp beer that is quite refreshing for a 7%. The carbonation is high on this one and you will notice it.

D - Has a little punch at 7% but you could drink quite a few of these without it becoming overwhelming.

steelerguy, Apr 06, 2009
Photo of skybluewater
4.22/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a murky cherry-brown color. Very odd foamy head that recedes and leaves some lacing. Smell is fruity, almost winey, with a bit of cherry. Cherries pop up again in the taste, along with hints of shaved chocolate and clove. Alcohol is apparent, but not obtrusive

Overall, a darn good dubbel here. I'm definitely going to revisit this one in the near future, although the price, while not too high, isn't exactly cheap either...

skybluewater, Oct 23, 2004
Photo of bulldogg915
4.5/5  rDev +7.9%

bulldogg915, Mar 06, 2014
Photo of FadetoBock
4.25/5  rDev +1.9%

FadetoBock, Sep 22, 2013
Photo of danthehopslamman
4/5  rDev -4.1%

danthehopslamman, Aug 17, 2013
Photo of Satyr179
4/5  rDev -4.1%

Satyr179, Nov 09, 2012
Photo of lordofthewiens
3.68/5  rDev -11.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A 750ml bottle with 07/03/09 over 07/03/07 stamped on the label. Poured into a goblet, it was a medium brown color with some red highlights. A small head that dissipated quickly. It had a faint aroma of fruit (I think banana) and caramel. The taste was similarly muted, but there was some nice bitterness at the end. This was a pretty good beer, but I was expecting a little bit more than I got.

lordofthewiens, Feb 20, 2008
Photo of warnerry
4.25/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Best by 2/3/12

A - Pours a deep mahogany with some suspended material and almost two fingers of tan head. Head has outstanding retention and leaves rings of lacing.

S - Caramel, candi sugar and dark fruit aromas, with raisin, fig and maybe a bit of cherry. Also has a decent bread aroma.

T - Starts off a bit sweet, with caramel, fruit and candi sugar, but a yeast spiciness soon takes over. Some bread malt near the finish and another shot of spiciness on the finish.

M - Medium mouthfeel with lively carbonation and a dry spicy finish.

O - Very good overall. Not too sweet with a nice bread and spice presence.

warnerry, Mar 11, 2012
Photo of KotR
4/5  rDev -4.1%

KotR, Jan 27, 2012
Photo of DWolf
4.5/5  rDev +7.9%

DWolf, Oct 01, 2012
Photo of Todd
4.6/5  rDev +10.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Presentation: 33cl custom European-style brown bottle, with raised glass stamped "trappist" around the neck. Poured into an authentic Westmalle chalice.

Appearance: Dark, rich brown. Creamy tan head with good retention.

Smell: Caramel aroma and fruity esters.

Taste: Smooth, creamy mouthfeel. Lovely sweet malts with caramel and cholocate flavours. Underlining fruit flavours of date and banana. Hits a dry point in the middle and become crisp for a moment. A slight coarseness, from the yeast, follows in the form of a moderately spicy characteristic that mixes with a prickly alcohol presence. Bitterness is thin, with faint floral flavours. Finishes slightly dry with some residual spiciness, sweetness and alcohol on the breath. Warming.

Notes: This is just an overall amazing beer. One of the most famous of the Trappist beers, Westmalle Double can be found on tap at many Beglian establishments. 6.5% abv.

Todd, Nov 25, 2000
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Westmalle Trappist Dubbel from Brouwerij Westmalle
93 out of 100 based on 2,250 ratings.