Grimbergen Dubbel - Brouwerij Alken-Maes

Not Rated.
Grimbergen DubbelGrimbergen Dubbel

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very good

963 Ratings
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 963
Reviews: 498
rAvg: 3.81
pDev: 12.34%
Wants: 22
Gots: 99 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Brouwerij Alken-Maes visit their website

Style | ABV
Dubbel |  6.50% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 09-11-2001

No notes at this time.
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Ratings: 963 | Reviews: 498
Reviews by beals:
Photo of beals
3.37/5  rDev -11.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Poured into a chalice. Dense tan 1" head, very good lacing. After a few minutes, the head died away, leaving a thin coating of bubbles over a deep-red/brown hued ale. It's got a great subdued crimson color to it -- if it were a wood, it would be somewhere between cherry and oak.

It's got that alcoholic aroma of a dubbel, but something about the aroma seems a little off. Damn -- this is what I get for buying dusty bottles at Blanchard's (or any package store, for that matter). It almost smells lager-y, but I know this is an ale. Odd. I'll let it warm up and re-smell. (Update: upon warming up, off-smell lessens.)

Mouthfeel seems like it would be very smooth, but the high level of carbonation gives it a bit of a bite. Roused the beer to clear some C02, and it became much smoother.

Tastes far better than it smells, predominantly caramel but with a strong presence of fruity esters. Notes of berries and faint hops.

A good solid beer, but could be a much more drinkable one if the carbonation level were lowered.

More User Reviews:
Photo of Gueuzedude
3.48/5  rDev -8.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Pours with a reasonably dense, initially three-finger thick, dirty tan colored head that sits atop a clear, dark, brownish amber colored beer. The aroma is quite sweet and fruity with the trio of prunes, figs and raisins being quite prominent. As I work my way through this beer it leaves a layered lacing pattern on the sides of my tulip glass. Underneath this is touch of caramelized, yet quite toasted malt. Despite the sweet fruity nose the beer smells quite light and airy, I would expect it to smell a bit "thicker", if that makes sense. The aroma certainly could use a bit more complexity, some more yeasty spiciness would definitely be welcome.

The beer is definitely quite sweet in the flavor department as well. There is a certain heft to the body that starts to coat the mouth a bit. The sweetness certainly plays up, and almost seems derived from, an intermingling of concentrated dark fruit notes. Sweet figs and raisins mix with caramelized malt sugars, a solid brown sugar note. This is really quite drinkable, for some reason I can't quite help myself from thinking of fruit juice. The alcohol is hidden pretty well, but that is because of the fruity sweet notes that dominate the flavor profile. This is certainly not objectionable, but could certainly gain from some complexity in the flavor department. This beer would be a good way to end a meal, sweet enough that it seems like desert, yet not so rich as to be a chore to finish after a good meal.

Purchased: Plaza Liquors, Tucson AZ

Photo of JasonA
3.97/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12oz from Corridor Wine and Spirits in Laurel, MD.

Please note that my bottle is labled "Double Ale" unlike the picture. Though it does have "Dubbel" on the side. Pretty sure its one in the same.

Pours a slightly hazy dark copper, almost martzen-esque. Heavy on the head with lots and lots of lacing down the Chimay chalace.

Smell is light. I can tell there is a lot there, but I can barely smell it no matter how hard I try.

Initial carbonation, into something smooth and pale. Light, creamy, and smooth. No hops. Slight malt, but not typical malt. Is that something citrus-e?

Drinkability is nice. No real alcohol bite at all which is surprising for even its ABV. I could drink a few of these.

Photo of Doomcifer
2.78/5  rDev -27%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 1.5

Appearance - Poured extremely murky, caramel color with a nice two finger head and great lacing on the glass.

Smell - Smells of sweet fermented fruit...more like wine than beer. Picking up honey, figs, toffee, herbs maybe.

Taste - Extremely sweet...probably too sweet, to the point of cloying, Very winey, some toffee, maple syrup. I find it hard to indulge in more than one. Definite dessert beer here.

Mouthfeel - Creamy, velvety, medium to heavy body....moderate to high carbonation.

Drinkability - Like I said, I can't have more than one of these without getting sick of it.

Photo of merlin48
4/5  rDev +5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

11.2 oz bottle poured at cellar temperature into a St Bernardus goblet. Appearance is a beautiful cherry mahogany, with a curious, tan head consisting of many sized and textured bubbles. Head eventually receded into sheet lacing. Aroma was raisins, cloves, and fresh baked French bread. Mouthfeel was full bodied, and typical of an abbey dubbel. Taste was very malt based, even for a Belgian. Plums, cherries, raisinbread, bananabread, and some alcohol presence, all combined well for a nice and smooth sipping experience. Finishes smooth and easy.

Photo of Billolick
3.92/5  rDev +2.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Small bottle sampled, dating on the label but not sure what it means...oh well, maybe if I spoke Flemish...this one pours dark almond, mahogony fairly clear and supports a dark tan head, which is showing good retention. Leaves some stringy and scattered lacing. Aroma of dark berries, fruit and some rum raisin. Medium bodied Belgian, lots of fruit and smoky raisins and earthy woodyness picked up. Fairly sweet but quite drinkable. Decent, if not spectacular dubbel. Lacks the bold flavors and complexity of the monsters of the style, still worth a try.

Photo of tigg924
3.8/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Appearance: medium carbonation with a huge head, clear leather brown

Smell: fruity, apples and raisins

Taste: I get a big taste of pear, some green apple and a touch of alcohol

Mouthfeel: smooth, sweet, light body, and moderate carbonation

Drinkability: I would have another couple of these. This beer has the most pronounced pear taste I think I have ever had. Good and smooth--but not excellent.

Photo of Byeast
3.82/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured an opaque and ruddy dark brown. Head was small and tan. Taken to the nose , aromas are dark fruits like grape and plum , yeast , some chocolate , and a bit of bready malt. Taste is is nice mix of sweet malt , chocolate , some more fruitiness on the dark/red side , tinge of metallic flavor near the finish. There is some noble hop bitterness and a light spice in the finish and the aftertaste is of fruit, yeast, and slight steel. Mouthfeel is quite light Overall a nice drinking Dubbel. Didn't wow me but it was definatly well crafted.

Photo of Kraken
4.02/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

First Grimbergen I've sampled hopefully not the last . . Pours a nice clear dark brown . Not cloudy, no evidence of yeast in bottle. Nice white head , one finger with a vigerous pour. Robust smell of malt and slight fruit. Taste was nice and malty the way a dubble should be, minimal hops, nutty , sweet , but not cloyingly so. Very smooth dry finish very very drinkable. Price was a bit steep at 10 bucks a sixer but throughly enjoyable.

Photo of pat61
4.25/5  rDev +11.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Brilliant reddish brown, rocky off white head, fruity, finishes sweet with a slight touch of sour.

Photo of JoshJ
4.38/5  rDev +15%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured into a Belgian Verboden Vrucht glass.

If I was trying to introduce someone to expanding their beer palatte, then this is the dubbel of choice.

It's a beautiful dubbel! The rich dark chocolate colour is also trumped by the full bubbly head that finishes as you pour that lingers in a glass right till the end.

The taste is as finished as it looks in the glass. There is a nice level of Malty layers with just a hint of fruit like finish.

By far and away, one beer I will continue to buy. For those in Australia, Dan Murphys has started importing this, and it is very reasonably priced!

If you are thinking of trying it.. Don't hesitate.

Photo of kingjames1
3.75/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured light brown appearance with a decent white head.

Smell is unique. I can't quite pinpoint it, but I kinda like it.

Taste is also interesting. Raisins, honey, and spice, with a definite sweetness. Of course it has that distinctive belgium yeast present - makes me think of liquid bread, baked with small bits of rum-drunk raisins and brown sugar. A little medicinal as well. I'd rank the taste higher if it weren't for the unbalanced sweetness (though not sticky sweet - it is surprisingly thin).

Good carbonation, possibly over carbonated.

Definitely a drinkable belgium double, and unique. Not sure how crazy I am about it though. If you're new to the dubbel style, you'd probably be wise to start elsewhere.

Photo of Beerandraiderfan
3.18/5  rDev -16.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Dark brown ale with great lacing. Aroma was sweet, honey and molasses.

Taste was a mix of banana, clove, caramel, toffee. No hops, pretty much true to style. Don't go knockin' on Belgium's door lookin' for hops or bitterness. More alcohol than I would have preferred to taste. Finishes thin and hot. Not for hopheads.

Photo of ADR
3.73/5  rDev -2.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Dark burnt siena color, chill hazed but hard to see if its heavily sedimented. Darker yellowish head of 1/2 an inch for about 40 seconds. Good lace, attractive and crystalline. Aroma has notes of dark fruit, figs, dried apricots, slightly cognac-like. Carbonation is full but understated in a soft sense of small bubbles. Body about shy of medium overall. Flavor shows a slight sense of overdone alcohol, emerges as a slug of yellow raisins and the least bit of semi-sweet chocolate. Better hopped than some Dubbels, relatively bitter in the close for style. The fruity maltiness doesn't have an evolving emerging sense in this one like many of the other Dubbels that I tend to like more.

Photo of WVbeergeek
3.82/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Grimbergen Dubbel carries a deep brown body with hints of red in the light. The head poured thick, but it dissipated rather quickly. The aroma contains hints of nuts, and a complex fruity nose along with mocha and barley. In the taste detected flavors of anis, and a roasted barley on the palate. Overall it leaves a nice bitterness, but in my opinion something is unbalanced in the flavor. It is enjoybable, but it feels that something is lacking to make it's flavors work better together.

Photo of rastaman
1.86/5  rDev -51.2%
look: 3 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 1 | overall: 1.5

Bottled. Horrifically sweet toffee apple flavour. Very cloying. The sweetest and worst Dubbel i've ever had. Too much toffee and sweetness, no other flavours that stick out. Not a good example of the style in my opinion. Iverly sweet, flat and syruppy, very bad, worst dubbel i've had.

Photo of Auraan
4.27/5  rDev +12.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.5

Poured a deep reddish brown, with a slight ring of white head. When held to light it was a brilliant ruby red. Very beautiful to the eye. Scents of grape, slight hints of alcohol and dark fruit. A good nose, quite unique, and very fruity. I like it. Flavors of grape, prune, very slight hints of apple, blackberry and Belgian candy sugar sweetness. Very nice, sweet and complex with a good fruity character. As it warms more prune dominates the taste. It's quite nice, a bit sweet, but overall very good. Mouthfeel is medium bodied with low carbonation. Somewhat standard for a dubbel, maybe a bit low on the carbonation front. Overall it's a very good dubbel, a nice surprise. The fruity flavors are pleasant and it was quite complex in many ways. Worth trying at the very least.

Photo of jbphoto88
3.5/5  rDev -8.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Deep mahogany with amber highlights and a billowy pillow like tan head. Nice webbing but there isn't much else to this brew.

Smell is subtle with a sweet malty nose. A little on the weak side and hard to get a whole lot out of it.

Taste is more watered down then any other Belgian I've had. It's mostly malt with a touch of fruity yeast. Thin but balanced, most of the flavors are subtle but work well together.

The finish is sweet and slightly candied. I do like the rings on the side of the glass left behind by the head. All in all not a bad beer but not a fantastic one.

Photo of brewQ
3.85/5  rDev +1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

New to Kansas City ...

A nice draw that looks like a brown ale with a thin collar.
Winelike aroma of pears and plums.

Tastes a bit like brandy and is slightly warming.
Finishes silky smooth and quite cleanly.

The only issue I have with this beer is the $7 for a nice tulip when I can buy New Belgium Abbey for far less here.

Worth an initial taste.

Aside- The Maes family sent their kids to intern in Marketing at the Miller Brewery HQ when I was their in the mid '80's ...

Photo of watermelonman
3.58/5  rDev -6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

This arrived in a fairly warm shade of brown with a medium head. The head faded a bit, but still left some lace.

The flavors involved were very average. Fruits do come out in the fairly sweet smell. The taste was mostly of malts with some degree of fruit. The mouthfeel was a touch too thin, although the drinkability was good.

Photo of biboergosum
3.62/5  rDev -5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

330ml bottle. A particularly difficult beer to pin down, origins-wise. I assume that this beer, brewed at Alken Maes, is owned by Kronenbourg, as that is what this bottle says. And oh, the same 'glucose syrup' that invades their Blanc 'witbier' is present here. Yay.

This beer pours a clear, dark ruby amber hue, with three fingers of puffy, loosely foamy beige head, which leaves a seriously random array of grotesquely layered, sudsy lace around the glass as it evenly subsides.

It smells of tame Belgian yeast, a bit of bittersweet chocolate, faintly roasted caramel malt, an ethereal nuttiness, a touch of weak clove, and a mostly dry earthy hoppiness. The taste is fairly sweet caramel malt, lightly stewed raisins, a still subtle oily nut essence, Zeller's brand figs, a hint of generic sugary red grape juice, and a soft earth yeastiness. I was ready to wank on further, but this beer just sort of stopped, and thus, so did I.

The bubbles are pretty sedate, the body mostly medium in weight, and smooth, I suppose, a certain hard to pin down astringency rising and falling. It finishes on the sweet side, as a NutraSweet kind of sugary character finally bursts forth, among the lingering veritable caramel malt, yeast-enabled dark fruitiness, and very timid earthy, more than noble hops.

A 'dubbel', sure, but in a rather newbie, weakly pandering manner. Complexity seems lost on this one, and the adjunct ingredients, while not overly apparent, still add little to the mix, if at all. Easy enough to drink, but hardly up to the measure of almost any other true Belgian offering of the sort.

Photo of tastybeer
4.03/5  rDev +5.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Clear and dark. Amber red at the bottom of the glass, and darkens to purple oak brown as the glass widens. Creamy dense white, slightly tan head to the top of the glass. Patchy bits of lace are left behind along with a nice layer atop the beer. Aroma of juicy plum, a bit of apple, and toffee. Toasty malts, caramel and yeast. Taste is juicy with the above flavors. Taste goes back and forth between the tart fruit and spiced toasted malts. Nice mouthfeel, dry and lingering, slightly bitter and sweet in the finish. Very easy to drink.

A good Belgian, just what I was looking for right now.

Photo of GratefulBeerGuy
4.18/5  rDev +9.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

AP: A rightous pour unvails a beautiful deep, dark violet color with ruby red hues, very lively and bubbly which created a off-white frothy head that dissipated to a scattered and thin foamy cover. There is some small lacing left on the glass.

Nose: Extremely sweet molasses scented malt with a whiff of spicey yeast, ripe red grapes and a pleasant leafy and sour tinged hop scent.

Taste: "toasted marshmellow's" (to quote my girlfriend).burnt toffee and caramel flavored malt, very clean overall. The complexity hits you later with undercurrents of chocolate and sweet, ripe dark berries. There is a pleasant and mildly sour yeast with a simple herbal and grassy hop finish. The balance is good and the overall effect is too.

MF: medium bodied, thick, syruppy,smooth full-bodied feel with a decent bite that is decieving. super-clean and fresh feel.

DA: I was shocked to find this at my local convienence store here in NH along with the blonde...this belgian ale is highly drinkable and might be the first authentic belgian "Abbey ale" i've ever seen in a local market here in southern NH. I will continue to enjoy this stuff for a long time to come.

Photo of umtox
3.68/5  rDev -3.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A: Deep dark brown. A one finger creamy.

S: Not too complex. A hint of spice and moderate roasted malt.

T: Crisp increasing maltiness as it rolls on the palate.

M: Wonderful feel on the mouth.

D: Not too complex, but great taste, sits well and I could enjoy multiples.

Photo of sonicstylee
3.06/5  rDev -19.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

pours out a dark chocolate amber with a light beige head. decent aroma of prunes, raisins, and light fruitiness. taste is similar to smell, but lacks definition in flavors like other dubbels i've had. decent mouthfeel if a little watery. medium to ok beer

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Grimbergen Dubbel from Brouwerij Alken-Maes
86 out of 100 based on 963 ratings.