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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

158 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 158
Reviews: 105
rAvg: 3.86
pDev: 11.92%
Wants: 10
Gots: 5 | 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: 158 | Reviews: 105 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of watchnerd
3.23/5  rDev -16.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Run of the mill Belgian style blond, with all the expected characteristics (yeasty, citrusy, quaffable) of the style, but not particularly noteworthy in any way. A good basic stock blond for every day drinking when you don’t need to impress anyone. If you’re in North America, one of the better domestic blondes may be just as serviceable, and cheaper.

watchnerd, Jan 11, 2008
Photo of Patrick999
4.3/5  rDev +11.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

750 ml bottle, a birthday gift from my brother.

Poured a cloudy gold into a tulip glass. Nice head, but really excellent lacing. Beautiful and classy-looking beer.

Smell is a bit understated, like a pilsner with some Belgian yeast, unsurprising given the pilsner malts and Saaz hops in this beer.

Taste - wow, quite nice. A little spicy phenolic kick with copious sweet pilsner malt and gentle hops. Reminds me of a less intense Duvel.

Mouthfeel, drinkability - well carbonated, but doesn't seem filling in the slightest. A little sweet but never cloying. Sits well on the tongue and easy in the stomach. Exceptionally easy to drink - if I was to session a Belgian ale, this would be a fine choice indeed. Big-time props to my brother for picking this out for me; it's right up my alley.

Patrick999, Nov 02, 2007
Photo of psinderson
3.93/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Bottled poured into traditional glassware.

Appearance: Dark golden color with a medium white head. Some minimal lacing.

Smell: Citrus and yeast with a bit of grain presence and a malty background.

Taste: Citrus dominates. A good earth hop flavor with a mild hop finish. Clean finish.

Mouthfeel: Medium body, good carbonation.

Drinkability: Nice clean, smooth finish.

psinderson, May 28, 2007
Photo of jettjon
3.85/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

From the 750 ml caged-cork bottle, cork marked 10/07. Into a cervoise, a handsome, brilliant golden clear with heavy carbonation and a 2-finger bone-white head which rapidly fades leaving heavy lacing. Toward the bottom of the bottle, the lees come into play, turning the clear liquid an opaque, hazy color that is not at all unattractive. Good looking beer either way. Nose is rather subdue, a bit of bready yeast and faint coriander and orange peel peeking through. The mouth is similarly mild, with a subdued semi-sweet malt character out front spiced lightly with orange and coriander. Slightly bready with very light floral hops. Good flavor profile for a summer quencher. Mouth is full of smooth carbonation, and is easy on the palate. Drinkability is very good; this is a refreshing and drinkable beer with a relatively mild 6% ABV.

Overall: A solid but unremarkable blond, suitable for casual enjoyment on a warm day. Worth a try.

jettjon, May 28, 2007
Photo of albern
3.38/5  rDev -12.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

This is a little disappointing for a Belgian blonde. It pours a golden yellow with a mostly clear hue. There isn't much head, some lacing going on, but let's get to the smell. This has a cidery citrus smell which is not all that appealling. For a Belgian blonde, it needs a fruitier, candied sugar smell which is missing here entirely. The taste is a bit thin, not as medium bodied or syrupy, for what I would come to expect in the style. There is some complexity to the taste, part lemon, part citrus, with other bits of sweetness in the middle, just too cidery for me. One of the previous reviewers mentioned vanilla cream, and yes that is probably what it is. There is some carbonation to this beer, probably more than I would have expected for a Belgian blonde, and it doesn't add to the experience, and probably detracts somewhat. The beer does grow on you a bit, but it is an okay beer, just too watery for my liking and not representative enough of the style for me to really enjoy it. There is some yeastiness in the aftertaste. Eh, keep looking.

albern, Apr 14, 2007
Photo of GbVDave
4.43/5  rDev +14.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured from an 11.2oz bottle into a DT tulip.

A: Pours a slightly hazy pale gold. Thick creamy cap of foam that laces like a MF.

S: Green apples, pear, citrus, spice, bananas, pepper, vanilla, and herbal grassy hops.

T: Flavors of oranges/lemons, green bananas, white pepper, herbs, tart green apples, sweet juicy pears, and cut grass hops. Pleasant yeast flavors. Very nice drying malt quality that further emphasizes the hop profile.

M: Thinnish and sharp upon initial pour. The body thickens considerably as it comes up to temp.

D: An excellent combination of sweet and tart fruit, herbal hoppiness, tasty yeast, and just the right amount of malt. I see myself coming back to this many times in the future. Fantastic!

GbVDave, Feb 10, 2007
Photo of weeare138
4.15/5  rDev +7.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Purchased at Michael's Deli sometime last year. BB Date of April, 2005...oh, brother. Here we go again.
Appears a hazy light gold with a 1 finger, dense white head of fluff. Lots of scattered lace is left around the glass.
Smell is of yeasty bread, sugary citrus, vanilla, candy orange slices, along with an earthiness that seems to fit well.
Taste is of the mentioned aromas with a decent mix of the yeasty, sugary notes that are enjoyable.
Moutheel is light medium bodied, balanced, sweet up front, light yeastiness with vanilla cream mixed over the tongue leading to a dry finish that's very pleasant.

weeare138, Jan 25, 2007
Photo of bluejacket74
3.7/5  rDev -4.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Served in my Val-Dieu chalice, the beer pours golden yellow with a good sized very carbonated white head. Good head retention, lacing is good too. It smells grassy, yeasty and a bit like bananas. It tastes like lemon, pears, pepper (spice) and also has a grainy/biscuity taste. Mouthfeel is light, but is very, very carbonated. Too much carbonation for my liking. Drinkability is OK, but would be higher if the beer was less carbonated. Even then I still think this is a decent beer, it does taste good and it is smooth. I'll have to try this one again sometime.

bluejacket74, Dec 30, 2006
Photo of techdiver
4.33/5  rDev +12.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours a very slightly hazy gold with a modest head that dissipates slowly. Smells of malt and tangerine. Taste is quite smooth and well balanced, medium-bodied with good carbonation. Esters present themselves throughout and lead to a finish that leaves you wanting more. A very tasty and drinkable brew.

techdiver, Dec 03, 2006
Photo of geexploitation
4/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

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.

geexploitation, Nov 03, 2006
Photo of GooberMcNutly
3.28/5  rDev -15%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

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.

GooberMcNutly, Oct 25, 2006
Photo of Osiris9588
3.63/5  rDev -6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

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.

Osiris9588, Aug 25, 2006
Photo of BEERchitect
4.08/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

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.

BEERchitect, Jul 09, 2006
Photo of Budlum
3.98/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4.5

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.

Budlum, Jun 27, 2006
Photo of RedHaze
3.63/5  rDev -6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

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.

RedHaze, Apr 11, 2006
Photo of joedon
3.83/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

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.

joedon, Apr 09, 2006
Photo of brentk56
4.13/5  rDev +7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

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

brentk56, Apr 09, 2006
Photo of SilentSabre
3.08/5  rDev -20.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

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.

SilentSabre, Mar 08, 2006
Photo of stcules
2.9/5  rDev -24.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

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.

stcules, Jan 30, 2006
Photo of atigerlife
4/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

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.

atigerlife, Jan 21, 2006
Photo of tavernjef
4.2/5  rDev +8.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

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.

tavernjef, Jan 15, 2006
Photo of asabreed
4.4/5  rDev +14%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

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.

asabreed, Jan 14, 2006
Photo of BuckeyeNation
3.88/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

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.

BuckeyeNation, Jan 10, 2006
Photo of Frozensoul327
2.6/5  rDev -32.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

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.

Frozensoul327, Dec 25, 2005
Photo of Oxymoron
3.43/5  rDev -11.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

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.

Oxymoron, Dec 04, 2005
Val-Dieu Blond from Brasserie de l'Abbaye du Val-Dieu
87 out of 100 based on 158 ratings.