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Ommegang (Abbey Ale) - Brewery Ommegang

Not Rated.
Ommegang (Abbey Ale)Ommegang (Abbey Ale)

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.

3,848 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 3,848
Reviews: 1,650
rAvg: 4.16
pDev: 11.54%
Wants: 167
Gots: 328 | FT: 2
Brewed by:
Brewery Ommegang visit their website
New York, United States

Style | ABV
Dubbel |  8.20% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 02-18-1998)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 3,848 | Reviews: 1,650 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of DESTRO
3.95/5  rDev -5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

pours a murky deep brown with a medium sized tan head which immediatly dies down to almost nothing. a swirl of the glass releases big aromas of overly ripe bananas, alcohol and carmalized fruits. taste wise this thing is complex, once again overly ripe bananas as well as caramels, raisins, clove, ginger and rum come through big time with a small hint of bitter. lively carbonation and a crisp mouth feel finish things off, ending on a slight dry, yet sugary sweet note. very tasty, very strong and very interesting. i like it.
$3.99 for 750ml.

DESTRO, Nov 22, 2003
Photo of cokes
4.18/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A revisit.

Translucent, fiery brown. Call it scarlet. Call it ruby. Especially initially. Dregs turn this flatter and browner. Big, bleached tan head sits atop. Attractive.

I can already tell this is more impressive than my last experience. Nose ripe with pears cooked with brown sugar. Cotton candy, peaches, and apples. Vanilla roast too. Dark. Fruity. Nice.

Enters with fruit. Sticks with fruit. Apples and pears and peaches and apricots. Maybe I've acclimated myself to the Grains of Paradise, but I've grown to enjoy this one. Brown and mushy bananas squeezed with cane sugar. Traces of burnt qualities, but it nevers looses the fruit. French Vanilla. Sugar drenched pineapple. Yeast imparts traces or basements and must. Hoppy? Sort of. This dries towards the end, with traces of lemons and herbs. White rum alcohol is there, but offset.
Full, creamed body, with a good deal of spritz. Easily and thoughtfully consumed.
Much more of a winner than I'd believed. Fairly cheap too. This will regain a spot in my rotation.

cokes, Nov 19, 2003
Photo of Lafe
4.35/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

As I pour this beer from its 750ml bottle I get a lovely, fruity aroma. A careful pour down the side of the (room temperature) glass leaves a nice inch-thick, tight, cream colored head which persists to the bottom of the glass, leaving small amounts of lace as it goes.

I start the beer off cold, and get a fruity, spicy flavor. A taste somewhere between candy and figs with an almost clove-like spicyness. There isn't any appreciable alcohol flavor from this 8.5% brew. As the beer warms, the tastes become more complex. The fruity/candy flavors intensify, and some yeast character shines through, and hint of licorice makes itself known.

The dominant flavors seem to change from minute to minute, and this beer remains interesting and rewarding right to the bottom of this (big) bottle.

This beer has become my standby for the Dark Belgian style of beer. Brewed in New York, the price is half that of my favorite imports in the same style, and the flavor is fully their equal.

Lafe, Nov 17, 2003
Photo of wgunders
4.33/5  rDev +4.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured a reddish brown color with a thick fluffy off white head. The smell made me feel comfortable, with the smell of malt and fruit. In addition to the malt and fruit flavors there was a slight hint of nuttiness. The alcohol content was only slightly apparent, it would be easy to drink more than one of these if I didn't know the abv before drinking the bottle.
750 mL bottle, no date on bottle.

wgunders, Nov 06, 2003
Photo of IrishRedRock
4/5  rDev -3.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12 oz bottle. The entire bottle would not fit into my glass, so initially I had a few yeast-free sips. As I held the bottle to the light with the remaining contents in it, I realized that this is the most yeast-packed beer I have ever seen. The chunks of yeast sediment were overwhelmingly huge. The beer clouds significantly as I pour the remainder into my glass, now becoming a cloudy, yeasty, amber brew. So much yeast!

Surprisingly, I seemed to detect more in the nose before pouring the yeast in. I initially picked up grapes, peaches, coriander, and alcohol. After pouring the yeast, they are less noticeable, and a more spicy clove aroma is present. The mouthfeel seems to settle as well post yeast, and is less carbonated and has less of a bite to it. Flavor has a good deal of spices, in addition to some strong grape/winey notes. Slightly fruity middle, finishes dry with a mild alcohol taste.

IrishRedRock, Nov 05, 2003
Photo of RoyalT
4.38/5  rDev +5.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Appearance – Nice, lively head with a clear but dark brown body.

Smell – Lovely aroma of dark malts with lots of sugar. The dates, plums, ripe apricots, and cherries are just a few of the fruits that came out first. These were complimented with raw and brown sugars and a touch of alcohol.

Taste – Beautiful sweet taste of roasted malts, the ripe, rich fruits from the nose, and tons of sugar. Molasses finds its way in this concoction along with some maple and cane sugar. The alcohol is present but complimentary, not overpowering to the drinker.

Mouthfeel – Medium carbonation and very full in the mouth. This one is bite-sized and chewy.

Drinkability – There was a hint of licorice at the tongue that I didn’t care for, otherwise this was a terrific BSDA.

Update – After having a few of these over the last year I decided to re-review it for 2004. I seem to have gotten used to the light licorice flavor at the finish of this ale so upped the “Drinkability” rating from 4.0 to 4.5.

RoyalT, Nov 03, 2003
Photo of nixhecks
3.93/5  rDev -5.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured a deep, dark rootbeer color with a medium tan head that retained at a small film. Aroma is strong and of sweet, dark fruit, caramel, and alcohol, along with some typical Belgian characteristics. While the aroma was very sweet it was toned down a little in the flavor. Taste was also very much like molasses, along with maple, prunes, and malt. Mouthfeel was medium bodied with a medium-high level of carbonation. I did like this, but prefer the Hennepin as this one is not as light and drinkable as the Henne.

nixhecks, Oct 29, 2003
Photo of steelreign
4.38/5  rDev +5.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Ruddy brown - burgundy pour with pillowed off white head. Aroma of spice, fruity esters, hops, and alcohol, similar to a Belgian. The taste was wonderfully balanced between malt backbone and banana/clove notes that linger as the beer warms. Full body and bready on the tongue, very creamy and dense with carbonation.

All in all this brew is a wonderful example of this style, as all Ommegang brews tend to be. This and Unibroue Trois Pistoles are currently two of my favorite Belgian styled dark ales. Very nice!

steelreign, Oct 27, 2003
Photo of pio
3.88/5  rDev -6.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

between burnt sieanna and amber with murky gold highlights. great head, foamy with a few big bubbles, a cream and tan with a sandy orange tone. loks great and leaves behind a legace of lace.

scents are floral with autumnal decay and a hint of brass. the malt scantly sweet smelling with a note of wild cherry.

very complex flavors here, impressive indeed. a slight sour pervades through a gamut malts. malted to the hilt all around. strawberry and a slight hint of sugar with a wonderful wild cherry. tart and earthy malt go to war but it's not overplayed, in fact, it's fun to witness. only a bit of spices and they are welcome. there's actually a green veggy taste on the finish, it's cucumber and some bitter herbs. the mouthfeel is bubbly and heavy, chewy. although i liked it alot i wouldn't term it as super drinkable by any means. it's specialized.

pio, Oct 22, 2003
Photo of rdrummer
3.83/5  rDev -7.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

The Ommegang pours a nice brown as it should. The head is smaller than most beers of this type with a distinct lack of lacing. There was a hint of malty coffee in the aroma, not unpleasant, but unusual. There was a bold taste to the beer, but less complexity than others of its type. I got some hints of cardomom and cinnamon in the taste with the usual malt.

I would have preferred this beer if it had a little more carbonation. It had a flat appearance and taste. Overall though, it is a thoroughly drinkable beer, but not quite the effort of Ommegang's Hennipen Ale.

rdrummer, Oct 10, 2003
Photo of HappyHourHero
4.38/5  rDev +5.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I've had a few Ommegangs over the last year or two and the last few haven't invoked the same feelings as those first few. I am still slightly perturbed as to why, but here are a couple of ideas. The first is I think I have been drinking it too cold lately and loosing a lot of the flavor. I popped this here 750 ML and left it sit on the table while I emptied it. It lasted 3 chalices and about 45 minutes. As time went by and the beer acclimated to room temperature I noticed the flavors deep down inside slowly rising to the surface. The other thing I think influences the taste of this beer more than others is its age. I could be way off here (lets hope not), but the more time you give, it the more the flavors develop and the more complex the beer becomes.

While the head dissapears rather quickly, the beautiful ruby glow of the liquid more than makes up for it. The taste is mellow, alcoholic, and a bit malty. It may take half a bottle, but after a while you can feel the beer dance along your tongue, slide down your throat, and warm your belly.

HappyHourHero, Oct 09, 2003
Photo of Kwak
4.08/5  rDev -1.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

I had the 750 ml cork version of this beer. It poured nice and thick, good strong head with plenty of flavor. when it settled it had a nice brown/red color with a medium to thick body. The aroma was a little spicy but not over the top. a good strong taste of sweet Carmel and spicy fruit nice dry finish not to whiny!!

Kwak, Sep 30, 2003
Photo of jlervine
4.05/5  rDev -2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Dark brown beer with a thick light tan head that fades to a sticky Belgian lace. Prune, rum, and yeast notes were in the aroma. The taste was very malty with some spiciness and rum notes. Had a very heavy mouth, but wasn't chewy. Definitely a big beer.

jlervine, Sep 30, 2003
Photo of daledeee
4.2/5  rDev +1%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

This is about the best looking beer I have seen. Dark brown with a nice long lasting creamy colored head. I have a cold but I can smell fruit malt and raisons. The taste is one of a kind. Smokey, hit of cherry(I think) cocoa with fruit in the background. The cocoa sticks around after you are done drinking this. I did not notice any alchohol. I bet I will by the time I drink this big bottle! Cheers!

daledeee, Sep 25, 2003
Photo of UnionMade
3.95/5  rDev -5%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

The beer pours a cloudy, opaque leathery brown, topped with a thick, frothy sand colored head. Very sticky lace, coating the glass with multiple layers. Great head retention, maintaining at least 1/8" through the entire glass, leaving a clump at the bottom upon draining. Absolutely amazing color and lasting quality.
Aroma is very malty and sweet. Authentic belgian abbey dubbel. Lots of candi sugar, with tons of esters. Lightly phenolic, getting heavier as it warms. Hints of plum, fig, and cidery apple must. Pronounced raisin aroma. Some apparent alcohol, getting more prominent as it warms. Some spice, with a bit of caramel, and perhaps roasted malt. Extremely rich.
The flavor is hugely malty, with tons of belgian candi sweetness. The sip starts out malty, with heavy toffee and a touch of roasty coffee flavor. The caramel lingers into the middle, where it greets huge, slightly phenolic esters. Hints of plum, cidery apple, pear, and a big raisin flavor, that lingers all the wya through into the aftertaste. The malt prevails through the sip, carrying through the esteriness, with some sweet, sugary caramel coming through in the finish, coupling with a mild alcoholic burn in the end. A warming alcohol sensation in the swallow, fading into a caramelized raisiny maltiness in the aftertaste, which stays with you for ages. Body is medium to full, with smooth, active carbonation. The alcohol gets a little boozey as the beer approaches room temperature, coupled with the sweetness, it becomes a bit cloying.
A very bold, strong belgian ale, extremely authentic. The sweetness, along with the alcohol, gets to be a little too much, and one or two glasses is all I can take in a sitting. The price is also impossible to beat, especially for the quality of the product.

UnionMade, Sep 24, 2003
Photo of shirfan
4.13/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A beautiful clear garnet-red color with a fine-bubbled, two finger head that laces well.

Uncorked, this unleashes a powerful, estery aroma, with hints of alcohol and fruit tones, especially cherry.

Taste is dangerously smooth and inviting for a big beer. Very little, if any detectable alcohol; and no bitterness to speak of. That said, neither is this an overly sweet belgian-style ale. Just enough malt backbone supports the fruit esters, which again, seem to be led by cherry. Finish is flat-out seductive, inviting another sip.

If all the disgusting aspects of Robitussin could be removed and replaced with tasty beer, this is what you'd take for a cough. As it stands, it cuts through a stress headache quite nicely.

shirfan, Sep 24, 2003
Photo of cerevisiaephilus
4/5  rDev -3.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This beer smells great. Get a good bit of alcohol smell but is blended into a bunch of other scents as well, I'm definately getting an intense raisin smell and some other stuff too that I can't quite pick out. The taste, however, isn't outstanding. Its good, don't get me wrong, with some of the same raisin notes and a little sourness, but it is nothing better than a Corsendonk. I guess that isn't much of an insult, but after the Hennepin, I was expecting more from their beefier beer.

cerevisiaephilus, Sep 20, 2003
Photo of Bruiser81
4.18/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

I've been anticipating this brew for so long, so here it goes.
Very dark burgundy color almost brown. Nice tan creamy head that blew up on the pour and eventually settled down to a half inch and left excellent lacing. Looks tasty.
The aroma had way more going on then I could figure out. Just to name a few, dark fruit, raisins, dates, alcohol, and vanilla.
The taste also was quite busy. Taste up front is very malty sweet, with a bit of molasses hidden behind that. Plum and raisin were again present along with some light tannens. Currents and dates ran along the backbone through the whole brew. The finish was creamy smooth with the presence of diacetyl and a slight bit of hops giving it a sort of candyish finish.
Very full mouthfeel, almost chewy. Very delicious. Courtesy of feloniousmonk, thanks man.

Bruiser81, Sep 14, 2003
Photo of beerguy101
4/5  rDev -3.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Medium brown color, medium head. Aroma is malty and sweet. Rich smooth malts almost fruity. Nice hop signature. Finish is very clean, good mouth feel. Aftertaste is malty. The maltyness shines through on the finish. Smooth taste despite 8.5 % alcohol. Nice beer.

beerguy101, Sep 13, 2003
Photo of DarrellK
4.63/5  rDev +11.3%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

This was my first brew from Ommegang and I wasn't expecting much, but was very pleasantly surprised. The style is usually a bit winey, but in this case is was less so in palate but had a Burghandy nose, color but with a very thin head. The finish was quite lingering and moved from a slight prune sweetness to a dryer finish. This a nice style that is well captured.

DarrellK, Sep 03, 2003
Photo of Boilermaker88
3.83/5  rDev -7.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a 12oz bottle. Color is a deep burgandy with a steady stream of carbonation rising to the bottom of a massive creamy beige head. Left a nice patchwork of lace.

Smell was strong of molasses, dark fruits, roasted malt and alcohol. The alcohol became more pronounced after it warmed.

The taste is sweet, heavy of molasses and plum/prune/raisin. Hints of honey were noted as well as the faintest suggestion of tart apples. Slightly spicy with a steady alcohol flavor and warmth in the finish.

The feel is full, rich, smooth and creamy.

Overall, a pretty good beer. Rather strong alcohol content takes away from the drinkability. Not one I'd sit around drinking on a routine basis. Probably best to have with a good meal.

Boilermaker88, Aug 30, 2003
Photo of BierManVA
4.5/5  rDev +8.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Big "POP!" when releasing the cork.

Very dark amber color with fine huge head. The initial burst of aroma was that of an old cellar, woody and earthen.

An extremely strong tasting ale, alcoholic aftertaste. I should be eating roast pork or chicken with this! The flavors of this bier are extremely complex. They exist harmoniously however. This bier is obviously a fine product that is made with love and devotion by the brewer. I am overcome with this the more I drink it. It is rated highly for good reason, "It's good!"

At $4.49 a bottle, I believe I will put a few of these in the cellar for a special occasion.

Please excuse my lack of adjectives and descriptors, many previous reviews more than adequately describe it's flavors.

My advise: "Pick up a few of these"


BierManVA, Aug 27, 2003
Photo of ngandhi
4.15/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 3.5

The beer looks perfect. Dark chestnut with excellent head stability. A sweet malthead's beer.

Smells of mellowed currant and berries. The aroma is well-integrated, making it difficult to distinguish the fruits. Malt-heavy; minute citrus.

The fruit continues to develop on the tongue. I tried long and hard to pinpoint these flavors and found it nearly impossible. Ommegang might have created another flavor here. It develops from ripe grape to currants, light raspberry and pears. The pear flavor comes somewhere in the malts because it's detectable within the body; it doesn't develop until you let this stuff really coat your tongue.

The finish is dry; as some have said, of wine. It briefly redevelops into sweeter fruits and leaves an ultimate aftertaste of sugary (not roasted) malt. Not unlike port.

This, my first beer from Brewery Ommegang, has a great deal of character. I'm left both confused and intrigued. There is quite a kick to it; the phenolic notes are very pronounced and often smoky. I think it lacks balance and the alcoholic taste detracts from the end product. That said, Ommegang carries 8.5% abv so I can at least understand.

Ommegang is a beer of wonderful depth that I might have to come back to some day. For now, it doesn't carry enough complexity to actually allow the medicinal islay smoke. Many of you will not find that aspect overpowering; perhaps it isn't, but I find it inappropriate.

Regarding drinkability, it's not that Ommegang is too strong to drink often, it's that you can tell it's too strong. I have to hold myself back from getting ploughed on delicious Unibroues, Dreadnaughts, and Duvels; they are more delicately crafted.

According to the bottle, Ommegang is age-worthy -- I'd be interested to see what this beer would do in a year or two. The phenols and fruits are not fully integrated (as they are in, say, Duvel or Fin du Monde). Perhaps some cellaring would do it some good. If you do it or have done it, please let me know how it is.

Just missed greatness.

Relax, relax.

ngandhi, Aug 02, 2003
Photo of bmills1608
3.93/5  rDev -5.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 2.5

750 ml corked bottle presentation. These big bottles are a real treat on a lazy Sunday afternoon, pop the cork, and your good to go for the next hour or so. I've had the Rare Vos, which I thought was great. Pouring this, I was a bit surprised it was so dark, I didn't realize the style until later. Color was a deep ruby/chestnut brown, quite dense and hazy, sunlight had a hard time penetrating all the way through. HUGE fluffy tan head exploded during the pour, taking up half the glass. Aromas of yeast and raw leafy hops, cinnamon, baking spice and drying grass.

Taste is dark and rich, currents, black cherries, molasses (lots of this), dark malts, red wine and alcohol. Starts out with full blown malt (darker malts, reminded me a bit of an English brown at first) the mid pallette brings the alcohol and some nice fruity flavors and then finally the end is sweet at first and then dries out quite a bit. Finishes mouth coating and rich.

Carbonation was exceedingly smooth with really fine and tight bubbles. Mouthfeel was heavy, a little thick with a touch of creaminess.

Overall - A pretty big and bold beer. Exceptionally well crafted. After finishing my first glass, I got a real desire for some fries with mayonnaise sauce. So into the oven they went and out came the Evan Williams bourbon. A bit of bourbon mixed with mayo (Monk's Cafe style), that second glass of Ommegang and those french fries with bourbon mayo and I was loving life. Now that's a good pairing.

bmills1608, Jul 28, 2003
Photo of SheepNutz
4.18/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

12oz. bottle poured into a tulip-style glass. It pours a dark brown color with one finger of light tan head. There is a minimal amount of lace on the glass. The smell is a mix of sweet, slightly toasted malt and alcohol. Very rich and powerful aroma. The taste is heavy with malt, ripe plums and raisins, and a touch of hops. It has a sweet dry finish, almost wine-like. The mouthfeel is very strong and heavy. The drinkability is average for the amount of alcohol. A good beer to be slowly sipped.

SheepNutz, Jul 21, 2003
Ommegang (Abbey Ale) from Brewery Ommegang
93 out of 100 based on 3,848 ratings.