1. American Craft Beer Fest returns to Boston on May 29 & 30, featuring 640+ beers from 140+ brewers. Tickets are on sale now.

Grimbergen Dubbel - Brouwerij Alken-Maes

Not Rated.
Grimbergen DubbelGrimbergen Dubbel

Educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
86
very good

919 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 919
Reviews: 490
rAvg: 3.8
pDev: 12.63%
Wants: 20
Gots: 70 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Brouwerij Alken-Maes visit their website
Belgium

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.
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | Likes | High | Low | Top Raters
Ratings: 919 | Reviews: 490 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of Gmann
3.68/5  rDev -3.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a dark ruby brown color with an average egg shell colored head that left some lacing on the glass. The smell is of Belgian candi sugar and dark cherries, has a musty aroma to it as well. The taste starts of metallic and sweet with a dark cherry or raspberry flavor. The malt is quite neutral in this brew and no real hop presence detected. The feel is much lighter than I expected, not water but light, the carbonation is borders on the soft side and it finishes sweet but not sticky. A lighter dubbel than others and has an odd metallic twang but it is rather easy to drink and no cloying flavors.

Photo of largadeer
3.53/5  rDev -7.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Appearance - Dark, brownish-amber - good clarity when held up to the light. A gentle pour provided a spotty head, but retention is decent.

Smell - Earthy; a bit of chocolate and dried fruit, slight spicy hops.

Taste - Nice mix of roasted, nutty notes, coacoa and dried figs. Slight metallic/mineral flavors come out as the beer gets closer to room temperature. Good bitterness in the finish; hoppier than most dubbels.

Notes - I wasn't expecting much from this, but it's surprisingly decent and characterful.

Photo of BarryNL
3.14/5  rDev -17.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3.5

A: A beautiful clear ruby red with a long lasting head which leaves an attractive lacing on the glass.

S: Caramel and toffee with slight earthy notes.

T: Slightly sweet with a malty flavour. There is an impression of dark malts, perhaps chocolate but more likely something like Special B or biscuit. Little hop flavour and low bittering. Slight sour, almost subtle lambic after-taste.

M: Quite gassy, almost turns to foam if you try to swirl it around your mouth too much.

D: Not had - I'd happily knock back a few of these. It's quite light for its strength (as are most of the Belgian beers which use sugar in their recipes). Not a favourite, but pleasant enough.

Photo of Gambrinus1184
4.03/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Served on-tap at the Old Corner Cafe, Naugatuck, Conn.

A: Pours a very nice deep, reddish, mahogany brown with a one finger head of tightly packed carbonation. Deep, shining hues flash when held up to the light; very nice.

S: Smells, deep, dark, fruity and estery. The alcohol is a bit noticeable, but it's cloaked in a variety of dark berries and grapes, like a wine.

T: Smooth, velvety fruits and sweet malts. There's a slight hop on the palate for balance, but I taste mostly sweet, fruity malts. There's some sweet sediment left on the tongue after each sip also.

M: Smooth, velvety, and a bit chewy. I recommend letting it warm a bit, and not taking big gulps.

D: It's not to be taken lightly at 6%, but could easily be had again and again. You're best capping off at two, but I wouldn't blame anyone for returning to the well.

A great Dubbel all around. Great to see something that is available on-tap, as well as in bottle form, that tastes great and won;t break the bank like some other imports. Definitely recommended.

Photo of DoubleJ
4.03/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

On-tap at the YardHouse, on to the beer:

After my sample of Maredsous 10, I was surprised that this beer tasted quite "light", if only because i was expecting something heavy. Highly drinkable and full of dark fruity flavors. Too bad it's served in smaller goblets : (

Photo of thierrynantes
3.03/5  rDev -20.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Beer bottle (25, 33cl.) ,tasted in 2001.

Appearance: brown-red color, with a tan foam head.
Smell: aromas of coffee and caramel.
Taste and mouthfeel : too sweet, not complex flavors.
Drinkability: an average abbey beer in the style Belgian dubbel

Review translated from french 5-24-2008.

Photo of animal69
3.18/5  rDev -16.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

this was one my dads favs in the 70's, i don't think it's brewed by the same people, though ; pours a clear, deep reddish-brown w/ a thin off-white head which dissipates quickly, huh, no yeast in the bottom of the bottle, moderate broken lacing ; a sweet, fruity, caramelized aroma, dates maybe, a hint of butter(?) maybe ; a crisp, sweet, brandyish, flavor w/ a slight metallic taste, some fruity undertones, a little watered down tasting, actually, not a really noteworthy Belgian dubbel, definitely not the Grimbergen I remember ; a little on the lighter-bodied side,too, but the co2 helps cover that ; a drinkable one, but i put this one on the bottom of my style list, so far...

Photo of BradLikesBrew
3.98/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

a: Pours a dark, redish brown with a light tan colored head that leaves great lacing behind as I drink.

s: Slight sour notes, toffee, raisins, maybe cherry.

t: Robust flavor very similar to the nose. Candy like sweetness similar to cola, very faint bitterness and a small bite from the carbonation.

m: Dry, clean finish. Smooth texture.

d: Very drinkable for a dubbel. Not too malty or sweet. Not too pricey, a good, easily accessible belgian.

Photo of Flyer
3.17/5  rDev -16.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Looks beautiful in the glass, with rich crystalline red color and a nice head. Not much aroma. A good amount of nice dried fruit notes, with more of a brandy-ish quality coming through as I got further into the glass. More dried fruit in the finish, particularly some cherry and prune notes. I would've guessed this had more alcohol. Surprisingly clean finish for such a sweet beer, but still a little cloying by the end of the glass. Still, overall an above-average dubbel.

Photo of demcorhip
3.8/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured into my Chimay chalice. Almost as dark as a porter, very deep burgundy bordering on black coloured ale. Pale one finger tight tan head with good retention, even with the somewhat subtle, fine carbonation. Left nice lacing, thin sheets broke down to intricate webs.

Toffee was the most pronounced aroma, but all in all the nose on this brew was somewhat subtle or subdued. Vinous aromas followed, hints of cherry, and a slight earthy hop aroma also came through.

More subtleties revealed themselves upon tasting. Once again toffee was the main flavour, hints of creamy nuts and chocolate also revealed their presence. Cherry and red grape much like in the nose, followed by a very mild, earthy, leafy hop touch.

Medium bodied, lightly and finely carbonated. Rich malts showcased and offset with a subtle nuance of slightly musty, earthy hops.

A tasty beer, with a fair bit going on, all be it in an almost behind the scenes way. Some residual sweetness, assuming its from dark candi sugar, but very well attenuated, almost managing a dry finish, making for a very drinkable ale, it would be no chore to knock a few of these back. Would serve as a good, approachable Belgian/Dubbel. Thanks to my wife Nicci for picking this up for me.

Photo of Hibernator
3.95/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Grimbergen Dubbel
11.2 oz brown bottle
Served in an Allagash tulip glass

* Game 4 ALCS - Boston vs. Cleveland *

Pours a deep, dark brown with a nice head on top leaving great trails of sticky lacings.

A sweet and malty backbone provide the foundation. Hints of dark fruits, possibly prunes. Touch of banana flavor with a rum raisin bite. Sugary and quite sweet overall.

An enjoyable Belgian double.

Photo of AlexLMS
3.94/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance: deep ruby colour. Very good clarity. The head is light tan, moderately large and creamy. Not very persistent. Beautiful lacing.
Aroma: complex aroma. Mixture of sweet malts, caramel, a little bit of wine and some fruits.
Taste: confirms the smell. Finish with a nice port feeling.
Mouthfeel: creamy, average carbonation, nice alcoholic strength and a medium to full body.
Finish: medium length, turning dry and bitter after awhile.

Overall: in my opinion the best Grimbergen in the market. Very nice body and perfect level of sweetness. Looking forward for another one.

Photo of BDIMike
4/5  rDev +5.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Very dark, settled appearance. Little to no head.

Not much of a smell at all. Almost smells like raisins or some sort of grape smell, like a wine.

Good taste. Starts of with a light, malty taste. THen the taste moves to a fruitier taste at the end.

Lighter feel in the mouth, but a significant enough thickness.

Drinkibility is much greater than most Belgian dubbels. I could drink three to four of these, where normally I would limit it to one or two.

Photo of eberkman
4.08/5  rDev +7.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a cloudy dark brown with a dense light tan head that lasts a few minutes. Smells of prunes, dates, raisins, cherries and other assorted dried fruit, with some alcohol notes as well. Not a strong aroma but definitely has some presence. Tastes of candied sugar, dark, ripe fruit, toffee and I may have even detected a hint of maple. Nice sweet maltiness to it, balanced out by just a bit of sourness in the middle and a bitter twinge at the end. Feels fullbodied yet brisk. Definitely an easy drinker.

I think this is an underrated dubbel, especially for its price. I found very little to criticize to tell the truth. Not world class, but a very solid representation of a Belgian that is highly enjoyable -- and very accessible to friends who you may be trying to turn onto beers that they may otherwise find daunting. I'll be getting this again.

Photo of cypressbob
3.7/5  rDev -2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

330ml bottle served slightly chilled in a Straffe Hendrik goblet

Pours with a rich burgandy body with shimmering maroon highlights. Slightly hazy with a dense light tan head. Solid retention plus lots of patchy lacing up and down the glass

Smell, rich sticky molasses tinged dried fruits. Prunes and figs, some spicy alcoholic vapour however pretty slight. Brown bread and a few sugary esters which become almost phenolic. Dry yeast character also

Taste, crisp and thick biscuity malt. Some sweet fresh rye bread, slightly estery once again. Some dried fruit character along with the dry malt. Lasting yeasty dryness on the palette, an almost rice like adjunct dryness.

Solid but ultimately underwhelming. A clean tasting dubbel but just a little bit low on flavour and overall character

Photo of Sammy
3.72/5  rDev -2.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A bit dark, not too sweet. Pomegrant juice. A bit of head on darkish brown. Malty yeasty aroma. Balanced bit nothing too special. A bit raisin wine sourish and bitter amidst yeast. Drinkable brew but So-so for a Belg. Carmel and a touch of toastiness.

Photo of Romulus141
4.23/5  rDev +11.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured into a steep wine glass (to approximate a chalice).

Appearance: Pours a deep amber brown. Hints of red are visible when held up to the light. This ale has a white, fluffy head with good retention. Lacing sticks to all sides of the glass.

Smell: I notice a sweet, almost raisin-like scent upon my first sniff. I also detect hints of chocolate, and some hints of citrus. This smell is complex, and reveals that this is a complex brew.

Taste: A blast of sweetness is the initial impression, followed by hints of chocolate and toffee. The finish is also quite intense, and like the bottle suggests, is like that of a fine brandy. Quite complex in character, but refreshing on the palate. I cannot detect the alcohol in this at all.

Mouthfeel: Medium-bodied with a crisp background of carbonation. It is well balanced, and goes down smoothly.

Drinkability: These are quite rich, so it would be difficult to session with these. However the two or three that I could have would go down effortlessly.

A very good brew, and one of the first Dubbel's I've tried. I enjoy this style, and will look for more.

Photo of Alchemist00
4.17/5  rDev +9.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a nice medium brown color with a decent sized head that fades into a nice thin layer on top of the brew. The smell as the head retreats is a nice fruity blend of raisin, apple, and a hint of caramel. The taste is fairly sweet but nowhere near overwhelming, with a slightly bitter undertone that tames the fruit. Flows smoothly through the mouth, leaving a clean and film-less feeling. Very tasty but a little on the sweet side to have too many in one sitting. A great beer.

Photo of geexploitation
3.9/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours dark brown with some nice, clear ruby highlights and a pale tan head that fades to a ring. Nicely balanced aroma of dark fruits, baked apples and an earthy hint that reminds me of cigar tobacco. Some nice doughy/yeasty notes in there, too. On the palate, things are a tad too sweet, but still dry overall. Light raisins and rum coexist with some band-aid elements and baked apple spices. Licorice on the finish. Mouthfeel is pretty light for a dubbel and quite well carbonated for the style, but not over the top. Overall, this is a nice little dubbel, especially for the price. Quite decent.

Photo of weeare138
4.03/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On tap...
Appears a dark chestnut brown with a fluffy, two finger head of foam that slowly fades into a marshmellow-like floating cap. Tons of lacing sticks to the edges of the glass like peanut butter.
Smell is of plum, grapes, brown sugar, caramel, and vanilla.
Taste is of the aromas with raisins & prunes coming through moreso in the flavor.
Mouthfeel is medium bodied, sweet up front, along with yeasty, doughy goodness. Raisins and caramel duke it out to the finish.

Photo of BuckeyeNation
3.16/5  rDev -16.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Rusted orange rind mixed with brick red and caramel brown. I loved the head on Grimbergen Blonde and I... almost... love the head on Grimbergen Dubbel. It's a fetching shade of golden ecru and has lumpy, bumpy, sticky, rocky character to burn. Small splotches of sea foam lace decorate the upper reaches of the glass.

What the hell happened to the nose? I would never have guessed dubbel in a million years. All I can appreciate is a whiff of well-toasted malt and an indistinct fruitiness. Where are all the olfactory goodies that are supposed to be coming from the yeast? Warming helps the nose reach average, if only because I can now smell something; earthy brown malt primarily.

Grimbergen Double Ale (as my label reads) is a decent version, but that's as far as it goes. My immediate impression is that I've had any number of American-brewed dubbels that put this one to shame. I wonder if a higher ABV would have helped? More malt, a better yeast strain, more depth and more complexity sure would have.

The flavor profile is acceptably broad, but is nowhere near deep. Let's see... dark caramel extract, fig jelly (not jam), tobacco juice, maybe a little grape... that's about it. A little yeasty spiciness would go a long way. The beer is sweet(ish) with a countering bitterness never far below the surface. I'm struggling to come up with positives for what is probably one of the simplest dubbels I've ever had. Uh... it's unchallenging to drink?

The mouthfeel has almost nothing in common with most Belgian ales in existence. It isn't bad, though. There are plenty of bubbles, but oddly enough, they aren't volumizing the beer very well.

I'm tempted to bump the flavor score because the beer really does nothing wrong. Trouble is, it does almost nothing right. Not all Belgian beer is special, even for a converted Belgianophile like me. Grimbergen Dubbel is exhibit 'A'.

Photo of jdhilt
4.16/5  rDev +9.5%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours a four finger light tan, rocky head that fades slowly to a thin layer leaving some lace. Nice deep, clear amber color. Medium carbonation and medium bodied. Caramel/plum nose. Flavor is sweet-balanced nutty caramel, clean finish. Better than on tap in Belgium! $1.50 for a 330ml bottle from Capitol Convenience Concord, NH.

Photo of beerphan
3.78/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Stubby brown bottle -> goblet
no date, but there is a code on the back that starts with 2001?

Pours a dark brown with some nice red highlights in the light. A creamy slightly tanned head has some staying power. Thin sheets of lace. Carbonation appears tiny and rapid.

Nose: Rich caramel, light fruit tones, touch of alcohol

Full creamy mouth that finishes clean. A malt dominated brew, caramel and some chalky chocolate. Mild bitterness that hangs out in the background.

Tasty brew, i don't drink many dubbels but that may change soon.

Photo of Phatz
4/5  rDev +5.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On Tap at Eulogy Belgian Tavern in Philadelphia.
This beer is everything I expect in a Belgian Double.

Appearance: Served a dark opaque brown color with a small beige head and plenty of lacing.

Smell: Fruity with a thick malty almost dough like aroma, Belgian yeast a spices with a suggestion of caramel as well.

Taste: Starts sweet and malty with dark fruits, caramel, toffee and raisins and yeasty flavors. Smooth and balanced it finishes with spices and a touch of alcohol.

Mouthfeel: It is rich and thick but smooth.

Drinkability: It is a bit heavy to consider sessionable but it is tasty and enjoyable if you are sipping one glass.

Hope this is helpful.
Cheers!

Photo of barleywinebrewer
3.53/5  rDev -7.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A - Pours a clear rich dark amber with a huge billowy light tan head.
S - light malts swirling with a pleasant belgian yeast.
T - similar to the aroma with a hint of caramel and hop spice to round out the flavor
M - medium bodied, nicely carbonated with a dry finish.
D - nicely approachable, a touch of alcohol warmth around the edges.

Glad to have tried this as I work through various examples of belgian brews.

Grimbergen Dubbel from Brouwerij Alken-Maes
86 out of 100 based on 919 ratings.