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Val-Dieu Blond - Brasserie de l'Abbaye du Val-Dieu

Not Rated.
Val-Dieu BlondVal-Dieu Blond

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
very good

149 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 149
Reviews: 103
rAvg: 3.86
pDev: 12.18%
Wants: 9
Gots: 2 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Brasserie de l'Abbaye du Val-Dieu visit their website

Style | ABV
Belgian Pale Ale |  6.00% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: Bierman9 on 03-04-2002)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 149 | Reviews: 103 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of geexploitation


4/5  rDev +3.6%

Pours a pale gold, with a green tinge when held up to a light, with a foamy, dense, perfectly white head that sticks to the glass. The aroma reminds me a bit of Duvel -- grassy hop aromas (although they don't seem to derive from Saaz) predominate. The flavors that come out first are slightly bitter, with mild fruit at first, but those notes are quickly subsumed by mid-palate sweetness, while the fruit comes out at the end and on the finish. Light mouthfeel, with a nectary sweetness and mild carbonation. Overall, this is a very good Belgian blond -- light, slightly sweet, slightly bitter, with plenty of fruity flavors.

11-03-2006 06:07:16 | More by geexploitation
Photo of GooberMcNutly


3.28/5  rDev -15%

750 bottle. Had never heard of it, but it was on sale, so it went into the case. Cloudy straw golden color with huge head (especially the second pour) that lasted until the end of the glass. Light and uncomplex with a subtle aroma of straw and spice. Palate was subtle and varying as well, with the carbonation waking up the hop aroma and the notes of citrus.

10-25-2006 16:12:34 | More by GooberMcNutly
Photo of Osiris9588


3.63/5  rDev -6%

Pale gold color, pouring very clear with a slight head that dissipated quickly. An aroma of citrus and yeast. Taste offers light fruit and spice with a slight mineral quality. Mouth is light and bright, though not a whole lot in the way of complexity. It is highly drinkable. It would probably accompany fish dishes excellently. Solid overall, but nothing earth-shattering. Would surley drink one if I found it in my fridge though.

08-25-2006 21:33:51 | More by Osiris9588
Photo of BEERchitect


4.08/5  rDev +5.7%

Surprised I had never tried this beer before. I'm glad I did; it proves to be a very nice beer. Typical Belgian, it shares a lot of characteristics with Duvel and Leffe. The beer is lighter, paler in color, but nearly competes with Duvel in its head retention. Light haze shows lots of proteins and lends to an estery, spicy aroma. Nearly honey sweet with light hopping for balance. Fruity with peaches and pears, sprinled with a light clove, bananna character. Very creamy and soft on the toung...like a Witbier. Cleanly lifts away in the finish with a lightly cooling evaporative quality. Not drying or grainy. Pure and simple good beer.

07-09-2006 18:48:03 | More by BEERchitect
Photo of Budlum


3.98/5  rDev +3.1%

Poured from an 11.2 ounce bottle in to a Val Dieu chalice. Appears clear and golden with about a half inch of foamy white head. The head lasts for about 45 seconds before giving way to a miniscus which stays for the entire drink. As an aside, their glass was perfectly filled which is always gratifying.

Aromas of yeast and sweet grapes. This one is very floral with plenty of clover and a wiff of hyacinth. The smells are actually most comparable to a sweet, white wine.

The taste is immediately like white wine. Light, sweet and refreshing. However, this brew does not have bitterness which I associate with wine. That is not to say that there is no bitterness present. Very well balanced between sweet fruit and yeast flavors with a hint of sour grapes. As it warms sweeter fruits arrive. Mainly apricots and mandarin oranges.

The drinkability of this stuff is amazing. It is one of the lightest and most refreshing beers I've tired without lacking depth of flavor. This could turn in to a great session brew, albeit a little expensive. Perfect for a hot summer night.

06-27-2006 01:51:59 | More by Budlum
Photo of RedHaze


3.63/5  rDev -6%

Pours a slightly hazy pale straw color, with a one finger head that settles quickly to a thin cap and ring and leaves behind some thin lacing.

Smell; yeasty with strong floral notes, and some traces of pepper. There's some sweet fruits that I can't quite place along with a wheat prsence.

Taste; very fruity up front, with oranges and pears, and floral. There's a solid malty biscuity flavor, and candied sugar as well as a strong wheat presence, and finishes with a pleasant peppery spiciness. While this isn't a big in your face knid of beer, I found myself really enjoying this understated/sublte brew. Mouthfeel is light to medium bodied, and very refreshing.

04-11-2006 01:46:16 | More by RedHaze
Photo of joedon


3.83/5  rDev -0.8%

Pours with a huge, white, sticky head; very clear gold color. Very pleasant aroma of yeast and malt with a little grassy note.

Taste is right on type with nice malt backing, a little sweetness and balanced by a touch of hoppiness.

Very good body and nice aftertaste, just a slight citrus tang. Good drinkable Belgian.

04-09-2006 19:54:56 | More by joedon
Photo of brentk56

North Carolina

4.13/5  rDev +7%

Appearance: Cloudy apricot body with a frothy, whipped egg whites head; leaves splashy lacing all over the place

Smell: Spicy, fruity and a touch of bubblegum, along with the trademark Belgian yeasty funk (which, in this case, is rather subtle)

Taste: Starts out with a biscuity malt flavor with a touch of lemon in the back; after the swallow, a variety of other flavors come into play - pear, pepper, more lemon, candi sugar and leather come to mind

Mouthfeel: Light bodied with lots of carbonation

Drinkability: I'm not a big fan of Belgian pales, but this one hits the spot for me; where others are underwhelmed, I enjoy the subtle elements

04-09-2006 19:39:57 | More by brentk56
Photo of SilentSabre

North Dakota

3.08/5  rDev -20.2%

This has easily got to be the lightest Belgian I have ever had. Ever. I wasn't bad, and I haven't got anything really negative to say about it, but I wasn't exceedingly impressed, either. I looked good, and poured up like any other belgian blonde, or rather, almost looked like a hefeweizen. Pale yellow / orange colour, cloudy with sediment, monster white fluffy head. The smell was very, very muted. What smell there was, reminded me of a saison or a lambic with its musty, dank basement smell. A fantastic smell, but way too little of it. I was un-impressed. The taste was....well...average. It was pleasant, and I enjoied it, but it wasn't fantastic by any stretch. Just decent. The mouthfeel was very smooth, and I felt that this ale was carbonated well for the style. It was easy to drink and quite refreshing. I feel I could drink large volumes of this stuff. Overall, it wasn't bad. In fact, it would make a superlative summer ale. I just felt that it was exceptionally light, and as such, not my style.

03-08-2006 23:33:23 | More by SilentSabre
Photo of stcules


2.9/5  rDev -24.9%

Blond color, beautiful head, white and sticking. Very few bubbles.
At the smell a delicate malt, with white flowers and camomile. Breadcrust. A light white fruity (peach? Pear?). Roses. Overall, a ood smell.
The taste is more fruity, with pear, maybe even a little too much. Less fresh than the smell, more unbalanced toward the fruitiness, lightly too sweet. Ripe fruit.
In the aftertaste there is a better balancing, with fresher notes, floreal.
Overall, not bad. Unbalanced taste.

01-30-2006 21:20:56 | More by stcules
Photo of atigerlife


4/5  rDev +3.6%

750 ml bottle. Cork date stamped 09/04. Poured into a tulip glass.

Poured a nice light golden color. Highly carbonated with a lot of small streams of bubble rising up. A big, fluffy, rocky head that looks like beaten egg whites sitting on top and won't go away.

The aroma is yeast and fruit. Also had some bready hints with flowers throughout. Nothing overpowering, just a lot of hints of different things.

The taste was light hops, malt, yeast and flowery/fruitiness. Some grain came through. Also some bread.

The mouthfeel had a medium body, quite cleansing, smooth and well balanced. Overall, I found this to be a very drinkable brew. They obviously decided what they wanted from this beer, and went straight at it. A nice beer in this style. Definitely a pleasant surprise that I would like to have again.

01-21-2006 18:19:31 | More by atigerlife
Photo of tavernjef


4.2/5  rDev +8.8%

Whitish blonde yellow with a medium white cap of smoothly lathering foam. Rings of lace coat downwardly in patches.

Very prominent aroma of flowers that is brightly intense with a fine little touch of yeasty funk and sugar sweetness. A feathering of lemony orange floats around in there as well. Quite fragrant and pleasing.

Taste is much more sweet and evenly malted then the aroma gives way to. The flowery aspects are all but a drift along an expansive field of wheat sugared bready sweetness. Nice though. Pleasingly soft and delicate with a nice touch and go with the flowery notes.

Feel is well balanced and favorable smooth with a lighter medium-like body. Has an escapeability to its body thats ghostly full in its malt base. So soothing and soft to the palate its as if it were a liquid pillow of sugary bread and flowers.

A damn fine Blonde Ale; drinks down with ease and comfort.

01-15-2006 07:32:39 | More by tavernjef
Photo of asabreed

New York

4.4/5  rDev +14%

33 cl. bottle served in an Abbey du Val-Dieu oversized wine glass (that I received with the gift pack, so I figured I should try out the glass with a proper brew).

Appearance: Oversized wine glasses certainly do make the brews look beautiful. Hazy dry straw yellow with many bubbles floating toward the top. The head's currently refusing to dissipate, sitting at about 1" for more than 5 minutes now. Very very nice.

Smell: Burst of citrus and phenols come from the head and the beer as it warms and the head starts to dissipate. Extremely earthy and musty tones come from the yeast. Some lemon grass, citrus zest, and slight candi sugar. Fruitiness from the malt can be discerned too, as a combination of some tropical fruit, banana, and slight bubblegum. Slight esters are there upon warming also. I don't really get much hops at all, but that's not a big deal I suppose.

Taste: Tons of malt at the forefront of the first sip. Tropical fruit, citrus, slight bubblegum and banana, and phenols come through near the finish. Esters also are very up front, and come through more in the taste than the aroma. Finishes slightly sweet, a tad sour, and the finish is long, then becomes dry, then melds into a nearly-perfect blend of slight hops and all the aforementioned flavors.

Mouthfeel: Pretty silky and velvety, but not as full as I thought it was going to be with all the malt and sugars. A smooth burst of carbonation makes the end of the swallow very nice.

Drinkability: An excellent BPA, and certainly one of the best I've tried. I actually think, both for the price and the taste, this is better than Orval, and I certainly recommend it. It's balanced, complex, tasty, and it looks fantastic in an oversized wine glass.

01-14-2006 19:47:28 | More by asabreed
Photo of BuckeyeNation


3.88/5  rDev +0.5%

Hugely yeasty ripe lemon with waxy lemon edges. The cream colored head is beautiful. It's thick, rich and sticky with an attractively pebbled upper surface. Chunky scraps of pocked lace adhere to the glass, where they patiently oversee the crown's slow, majestic descent. Irrespective of positive qualities yet to be uncovered, the appearance suggests that this is a quality beer.

The nose is not as wonderful. Slightly sweet, lightly buttered pale malt leads the way. Those adjectives point out the aroma's lack of power and personality. As well, the usually distinctive scent of Belgian yeast is subdued, although not totally lacking. All in all, the nose is pleasant, but no more than that.

Val-Dieu Blond is good beer. The malt structure is firm and tastes like buttered sugar cookies, or sugared butter cookies. As one who likes a little sweetness in most styles, I approve of the amount of candi sugar used. There's minimal fruitiness (ripe pears) and a subdued herbal hop presence. Even though this is anything but a complex beer, I like it.

A clove-like yeastiness is present on the palate as well, although it's still in the background. A stronger yeast presence would improve things. The mouthfeel is solidly medium thanks to all the malt. However, the candi sugar may be tricking me into thinking it's more full than it really is.

Other than the highly-hopped style outlier that is De Ranke XX Bitter, I've never been overly thrilled with Belgian pale ales. They're often nothing more than pale imitations of BSPAs. My preference for big, boldly flavored beer leads me to think more highly of the higher octane style. Even though I don't like it as well as I liked Val-Dieu Tripel, and even though it's fairly simple and straightforward, Val-Dieu Blond is still a worthwhile purchase.

01-10-2006 15:01:29 | More by BuckeyeNation
Photo of Frozensoul327


2.6/5  rDev -32.6%

A shame. So much going for this brew, yet so little flavor. Poured out to an attractive golden color with some hints of cloudiness. Nice 1/8 inch foam head. Medium high level of carbonation. Aromas were very full and malty. Some fruit notes. Taste was, I hate to say, quite boring. Flavors? Hand to find actually. Some malt and spice, notes of citrus. Could be so much more. Mouthfeel was very bubbly and dry. Drinkability was below average. For what this cost, there are so many better Belgian ales out there.

THE BLOODHOUND FACTOR: Benji dove right into this. Really enjoyed it. Guess he found whatever I missed.

12-25-2005 04:19:19 | More by Frozensoul327
Photo of Oxymoron


3.43/5  rDev -11.1%

The abbey of Val-Dieu was built 1216 by Cistercian monks. They were looking for a valley with a stream for agricultural and brewing activities. Due to multiple hazards such as fire, destruction, expulsion of the monks during the Napoleonic revolution, Val-Dieu have not always been able to brew and limiting production. You can say that again.

Ok so in French two is actually deux, but work with me here. Val-Dieu’s Blond is nice Belgian Ale. Light in color but dark than most, the blond is not “too” transparent and when originally pours leaves a bit foamy head. The dissipates “too” quickly but leaves its mark and laces to the glass.

If you have a bottle turn it around. There should be a stamp in the right hand corner representing belgian brewers confederation. This provides proof of Belgian authenticity even though its made in France. I tried Val-Dieu twice to make sure I was tasting it fittingly. The sweet maltiness is not “too” overbearing and has a great biscuit flavor to it. It is a enjoyable beer to taste but lacks that wow flavor, maybe “too” little in body.

Take two. The spice flavors come out nicely in the aftertaste. Take it from the Belgians “to” make a great Belgian blond, just don’t take it to the French. Although this beer is good I think, I will limit myself to order just one. Ok make it two.

12-04-2005 03:22:02 | More by Oxymoron
Photo of beveragecaptain

New Jersey

4.22/5  rDev +9.3%

330 ml bottle. This beer pours out a hazy yellowish-orange color with lots of floating particles and a huge white head. The aroma is pils malt and zesty fruit and spice. Sweet and malty flavor. Floral, crisp hops. Some orange flavor, but not as fruity as many Belgian pale ales. The finish is spicy, with pepper and coriander, and the spicyness is accentuated by a small bubble carbonation that explodes on the tongue. I like that this beer has the full, complex flavor without the huge amount of alcohol in many Belgian Pales. Very nice beer.

11-12-2005 21:24:09 | More by beveragecaptain
Photo of Naerhu


3.08/5  rDev -20.2%

A - Thick eggcream like head with amazing lacing and hazy yellow body.
S - Very strong candy sugar and belgian yeast aroma
T - No bitterness, light sweetness. Lightly floral, tastes like a very high wheat content. All around a mild brew.
M - medium body with belgian yeast silkyness.
D - Lacking inspiration, just too soft, sweet and mild.

10-30-2005 16:10:35 | More by Naerhu
Photo of mmmbeer


3.38/5  rDev -12.4%

330 mL bottle with no freshness date - served chilled in a red wine glass. Pours an orangey/straw color that is cloudy and has a 1/2" semi-fizzy white head that leaves some nice lacing and never dissipates completely. The aroma consists of yeast, cloves, a hint of banana, some band-aid, a touch of nuts and a big earthy malt background. It tastes earthy with some spicy hops, a hint of fruitiness, and a tingly, medium body. Overall pretty average I would say, granted it is my first Belgian pale, but I've got a De Koninck waiting for me to compare it to.

08-23-2005 23:00:44 | More by mmmbeer
Photo of Cwrw

Alberta (Canada)

4.1/5  rDev +6.2%

I love the label of Val-Dieu blonde: antique, purple and yellow, showing an old picture of the Abbey. The colours work well together and it looks very aesthetic and neat. Very attractive packaging in my taste. This 330ml bottle was brought back from Brussels, and has a best before of September 5 2005. A sweet fruity smell from the bottle after opening. Val-Dieu blonde pours with a clean look when poured in one motion, with a healthy but not overly large dimpled white head. The liquid is definitely opaque, though; sparkling, but not very transparent. There is no sediment in my glass or hazy yeastiness--it looks very clear, but looking through the glass gives a great deal of distorsion. Milky thick bone-white lacing, first in unbroken sheets then forming patchwork styles. The colour is darkish apple juice, or lightly copper-gold. The ice-cream white head is not large, but did stop and stayed around consistently. The website says it well when describing the blonde's head: "White but not too thick." A healthy and respectable appearance. The aroma is restrained but not muted. Flowery, airy and with hints of resiny sweetness. If anything it is very refreshing, not overly dense or cloying. In closer the nuances reveal themselves a little better: sourbread, honey, fresh baking brown bread, a dash of white sugar, green apple peel, and a slightly sour quality not unlike dry cider. The aroma is balanced, with no one characteristic overly strong: the maltiness and yeasty fruits complement and do not vanquish the other. The hops are not detectable to me. I found that both the aroma and the head/lacing improved about five minutes after pouring. The head initially looked a little weak and almost ready to vanish, but after gently swirling it for more aroma the creaminess increases and the lacing looks much better. The taste is exactly what I expected judging by the smell. Honeyish malt and spritzy fruitiness form up front, gracing the middle with more bread and leaving with a faint nutty dryness. The alcohol seems a little strong for a mere 6%, and this could be due to quite a few months of ageing in my cellar. The taste is definitely flowery as well, floral and almost soapy or juicy. A definite soft nuttiness plays in the background, and at times I get salted peanut tastes, which does not sound appetising, but it works fine in this blonde. Continental hop varieties can be tasted in the finish, done to a very balanced degree--just enough to leave you pining for another swallow. I also get dillweed and pickle-like salinity in the aftertaste, with perhaps a little iron. The beer is pillowy and very soft on the tongue, allowing for enormous drinkability. Whipped cream carbonation. Some would say it is a little watery, but it suits the beer fine; it is, after all, brewed to be "extremely digestible and refreshing." I would recommend drinking this slightly warmer than cellar temperature, as it greatly improved after exposure to ambient room warmth. This is not incomparable, and no one part of it grabs your attention overmuch, but for what it purports to be, this is another quality Belgian pale, worth purchasing regularly. I think it would be especially good as a session ale, as it combines enough taste with relatively low alcohol and can be imbibed with enormous ease. Absolutely nothing that a good beer drinker would take exception to inhabits Val-Dieu Blonde.

07-29-2005 09:13:27 | More by Cwrw
Photo of BrewMaster


3.78/5  rDev -2.1%

Appearance: Poured from a 33 cl bottle it shows a dull golden yellow color with a fluffy white head. The head is sticky and stiff on the glass.

Smell: Sweet, malty, fruity nose that is also lightly floral and spicy.

Taste: Spicy sweet with pepper and a clean malty flavor. This beer is fairly complex with slight smoky notes with dry leaves, maple, and sawdust.

Mouthfeel: Lightly creamy and crisp.

Drinkability: Excellent and smooth, malty, creamy and easy to drink. It is readily available which is nice and also very refreshing.

07-01-2005 17:37:45 | More by BrewMaster
Photo of silver0rlead

North Carolina

4/5  rDev +3.6%

Pours a cloudy, golden and pale yellow with a thick white head that settles farily quickly but leaves nice lacing everywhere. Aroma is very authentically belgian, nice fruity esters with a bready malt background but not in a clean, sanitized american way...very wild smelling. Taste is spicy, hints of corriander, lemon zest and clove as well a a light bready malt presence. The mouthfeel is very crisp, with somewhat high carbonation (for a belgian) and quite refreshing and thus the drinkability is fairly high.

06-09-2005 05:46:40 | More by silver0rlead
Photo of Backer2004

North Carolina

4.13/5  rDev +7%

Definitely a great choice in my books. For the history and deatils, see the previous review (interesting stuff). Drank this one first as part of a choose your own flight at the Flying Sauce in Charlotte. The first few sips were wonderful. Very smooth down the throat and quite easy to drink. The alcohol comes out a bit as it warms. A bit on the cloudy straw colored side. Not nearly as hoppy as an American or English Pale Ale.

06-04-2005 18:53:00 | More by Backer2004
Photo of AlexJ

North Carolina

3.85/5  rDev -0.3%

A draft pour yields a cloudy, pale yellow brew proudly wearing 2 inched of puffy white head. Lacing is abundant as the head slowly rededes. Head retains until the end.

Typical Belgian blonde ale aromas of succulant harvest fruits, honey, spritzy lemony zest, doughy yeast and delicate spice.

Flavor is very similar with an added melon and pinapple note. There's plenty of light citrus note to balance out the sweet flavors. It has a pleasant saazy hop finish which is quite floral.

Mouthfeel is medium with a light and refreshing body. Large bubbles of carbonation help the flavors to roll across your tongue. This definately tastes better than the bottled version. Five bucks for a 12 ounce goblet at Flying Saucer, well done.

04-24-2005 20:30:51 | More by AlexJ
Photo of RoyalT


4.1/5  rDev +6.2%

Appearance – This one poured a nice, hazy orange in color with a huge white head that left some gorgeous lacing on the inside of my Chimay glass.

Smell – The light Belgian yeast and modest hops are mixed with tons of sharp spicing that will curl your toes.

Taste – Ah, this one has a nice sweetness to it that reminds me of rich tangerines and maybe some light banana. The malt base is slightly yeasty and the spices from the nose step back just a bit at the taste.

Mouthfeel – This Belgian Blonde is medium-bodied with some good carbonation and a bit of dryness throughout.

Drinkability – I really enjoy this style and thought this was a good representation of my preferences. I like a little more spice than normal and a light yeasty malts, and this one delivered in spades.

02-25-2005 01:29:52 | More by RoyalT
Val-Dieu Blond from Brasserie de l'Abbaye du Val-Dieu
87 out of 100 based on 149 ratings.