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

Not Rated.
Val-Dieu BruneVal-Dieu Brune

Educational use only; do not reuse.

170 Reviews

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Reviews: 170
Hads: 255
Avg: 4.02
pDev: 12.19%
Wants: 17
Gots: 17 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Brasserie de l'Abbaye du Val-Dieu
Belgium | website

Style | ABV
Dubbel | 8.00% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: kbub6f on 01-20-2002

No notes at this time.
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Val-Dieu Brune Alström Bros
Reviews: 170 | Hads: 255
Photo of clayrock81
4.25/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Poured into a goblet for a dark brown body with a tan head and some lace patches. An intense malt smell with some roasted, caramel, chocolate and coffee malts along with a little yeast and some dark fruits tucked in there. Great smooth and creaminess in a medium body with caramel, chocolate, toffee, coffee, roasted malts along with figs for a sticky, sweet and dry finish. The malts dominate but there are some fruits like orange and apple pie crust as well for that dryish, bready taste with hints of fruitiness. Overall, a sweet malty double with a plethora of flavors that I am not doing justice; one of the better Belgians I've had and great for after dinner.

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Photo of Nick3
3.99/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

11.2 ounce bottle depicts a painting of the brewery or abbey. Best before date reads 15/02/10. Poured into a Kasteel chalice the beer forms a lovely 2 finger head which holds for several minutes. Dark, dark chocolate brown color with solid carbonation feeding the head. Floaties are abound and in full force. Thick laces paste themselves to the glass throughout the drink. A very attractive beer. Nose is subtle, nothing over powering here but definitely dark roasted malts and some dark fruit make their presence known. Taste is very smooth, alcohol is well hidden and hops are hiding in the background until the finish. Medium bodied, note nearly as thick on the palate as I expected. Was very surprised that the beer was as smooth and mellow as it was . .. looks had me thinking it was going to be strong and warming and this beer tasted more like something I could session; dangerous given the ABV here. Overall, a very enjoyable brew and probably a good one to give a newbie to the belgian beer world.

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Photo of stumac
4.07/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Got this brew from my old boss. Very cool guy he is....

this brew is aged for about a year:

this brew pours up a solid brown color with a decent off white head. Tons of lacing on my glass and tons of yeast flakes roaming around like a bunch of bums that just got let loose on a money tree farm. i smell a big nutty malt aroma, delicious, some yeast. i taste big malts, nutty flavor, dark red apples, crisp hop background in the finish, no real bitterness though. full bodied, low to medium carbo. a pretty badass beer!

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Photo of morimech
3.69/5  rDev -8.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

Poured from a very dusty bottle. Cannot quite make out the best before date but it looks like sometime in 2009. The color is a dark reddish brown with a large white head that has good retention. The head eventually settles to a thin cap. Moderate amount of delicate lacing on the glass.

Lacks a strong aroma. What I do smell is sugar and yeast. A little fruit notes if one concentrates hard enough. Alcohol is also detected.

This is a sweet dubbel. Some fruitiness is detected but mostly a caramel/toffee flavor dominates. Has a dry finish that saves the flavor. I do not get much flavor from the yeast but there is no mistaken this from being anything but Belgian. Some warmth from the elevated ABV.

A unique mouthfeel that I found to be very pleasant. Almost like a good champagne. Feels very light, airy, and robust. Gives a slight tingle but it is not harsh in anyway. It oddly works in this sweet, high ABV beer.

If one prefers the sweeter side of beer, this may be a good recommedation. Although it is not among the elite of Belgian Dubbels, it is still a good beer.

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Photo of ChainGangGuy
3.73/5  rDev -7.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Best Before: 09/09/10

Appearance: Pours out a clear, dark reddish-brown body with a large, frothy, ivory-colored head. Nice, delicate lacing.

Smell: Malty, mocha-scented aroma with further notes of nutty toffee, dark fruits, booze, and candi sugar.

Taste: Heavily sweetened mocha, sugary toffee candy, and even a pinch of cocoa powder strike the palate. Flavors of fruit, anise, baked bread, and sourish yeast are present but this all gets somewhat obscured by all this rampant sweetness. Drying finish (though still quite sweet) with just the tiniest bit of alcohol heat.

Mouthfeel: Medium-plus body. Moderate carbonation lends some assistance in scrubbing away all of those pesky sugars.

Drinkability: While not exactly a classic of the style, it remains a sweet, pleasant dubbel.

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

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

Appearance : dark brown color, with tan foamy head.
Smell : roasted malts aromas.
Taste and mouthfeel : sweet flavours of roasted malts, alcohol presence, spicy notes in finish.
Drinkability : a good beer in the style Belgian Dubbel.

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Photo of corby112
3.21/5  rDev -20.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a very dark brown almost black color with a very slim head that quickly dissapears, generating not lacing. Had a strong nectar/ grape aroma. This beer taste more like a wine than a beer with not enough maltiness to balance out the sweet vinuous character.

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Photo of jwc215
4.05/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

750 ml cork=caged bottle, poured into a glass chalice:

Pours dark brown with some dark rubyish hues. The thin tan head eventually becomes a wide patch. Some lacing sticks.

The smell is of spiced dark bread, some herbal notes and a bit of anise.

The taste is rooty, aniseedy with sweet caramelish/toffeeish maltiness, a touch of herbal spicing and a hint of sourish dark fruitiness. Becomes sweeter and maltier as it progresses. Nice maltiness.

It has a creamy, silky, medium-to-full body.

A nice, malty, but well-balanced, sipper with quite a bit of subtle complexities to it. A delicious dubbel with a great feel!

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Photo of KeefD
4.2/5  rDev +4.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured into a Val-Dieu chalice a dark amber/brown/crimson red color with a small amount of foam that fell into a nice cap and left behind plenty of thick lacing. Aroma of chocolate and dark bready, yeasty notes. Taste is similar to nose. Toasted bread, hints of baker's chocolate, a dry yeasty finish. Semi-sweet, delicious, and goes down quite easily. I'm not generally a big fan of dubbels, but this one was great!

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Photo of giblet
4.5/5  rDev +11.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

this is a nice smooth brown beer. poured nice into me glass with about two inches of head. steady carbonation and rich smell. the aroma of fruits, roasted malt and yeast. the taste was the same and finished nice and smooth. very nice lacing down the whole way. i am glad i bought four of these and with two left to enjoy i will savor each sip.

good beer. suckem up and movem out.


p.s. i found that this had a best by date of 13 months ago. i am guessing that it was kept in a good place and is likely to be a style of beer that ages well.

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Photo of everetends
3.96/5  rDev -1.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Got this bottle at Four Winds as a Freebie, thanks Mike. Poured into a chalice.

A: Came out a good looking dark brown, almost black. Lets a touch of light through that comes out a beautiful ruby red. The head is a rocky off white, almost brown. Been almost an hour since I started this beer and the top cap is still with me. The lacing sticks and remains on the glass. This is truly a beautiful brew.

S: Smells of dark malt, caramel, roasted coffee, alcohol soaked fruit (figs, grapes, and prunes).

T: Tastes of rich dark and sweet malt. Caramel, toffee, nuts (almond and hazelnut) alnl come through real easily. Rum soaked raisin bread is on the back end and really cuts the sweetness of the malt. You have a touch of coffee bitterness that rounds out the flavor completely. Incredibly balanced.

M: Big, chewy full bodied beer. Light to medium carbonation. A touch of heat from the alcohol on the back of the throat. Finishes a bit dry and leaves incredible aftertastes to savor.

D: This beer is a sipper but quite good. I really enjoyed this beer and was shocked that is was free. I was actually expecting this to be crap, but it turned out to be great. Really enjoyed this beer.

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Photo of windigo32
2.96/5  rDev -26.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

I had this served in a Duval goblet.

A:: Poured a very dark brown, almost black, with a layer of head that turned to lacing on the top after a short time.

S: The smell was sweet. There was a light hint of cinnamon and anise. There was also a slight hint of coffee. It was difficult discerning a smell from the width of the goblet's mouth.

T: Taste was slightly malty. There was a hint of caramel and a very slight note of roasted nuts.

M: The carbonation was a bit on the heavy side. Despite this, the beer still had a light feel to it. It didnt feel like it should be as dark as it is.

D: I found it drinkable, but I didnt find a flavor profile that really begged for more.

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Photo of auxiliary
4.17/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

appearance - Dark brown color, small head.

smell - Toasted malts smells here.

taste - Some roasted coffee taste here with some grains thoen in.

mouthfeel - Heavy-medium body.

drinkability - Easy drinking but at the same time you know that it is a strong beer,

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Photo of al885
4.38/5  rDev +9%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

my first beer review:

Val-Dieu Brown in chimay chalice best before 8/28/08 on bottle.

Appearance: poured with a one-finger off-white head. real dark, looks like coca cola. Head retained well, leaving lacing yet minimal.

Smell: smells roasty and nutty to me, very sweet scents.

Taste: Definite nutty taste, at 8% abv I hardly taste the alcohol in it.

Mouth: smooth and heavy

Drinkability: at 8% it is a slow drink. If i had more i would have a couple, but that would span throughout the night.

I enjoyed this beer

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Photo of bluegrassbrew
4.47/5  rDev +11.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

750ml bottle into a chalice.

Pours a chestnut brown with a nice creamy white head. Leaves some good icing like lace around my glass.

Smells very nice. One of those beers I actually said, "Wow! Nice nose." Dark fruits and molasses like sweetness.

Taste is just a good as the nose. Candi sugars, molasses, some apricot and just a hint of heat. Subtle yet flavorful.

Overall, this was one tasty beer. Very easy drinking. The bottle went by way to quickly. Highly recommended.

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Photo of beerthulhu
4.35/5  rDev +8.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A: Pours a dark mahogany red with tons of huge chunky floaties lazily floating in the glass.

S: Very soft roasted malt and caramel is evident on the nose, very subtle.

T: It truly is the flavor of this beer that makes it one of the better browns I've ever tasted. There is a slight alcohol detection from the 8% but is very well balanced. The beer slides down the throat nicely from the extremely smooth palate with some rich brown sugar and sweet caramel bread notes highlighting the flavor on the way down. Silky smooth texture, rich caramel and a soft roasted nuttiness makes this a prime example per style

M: The palate is very smooth, silky, and slick on the tongue with a creamy caramel texture and soft roasted malting.

D: great drinkability factor. Very rich and highly recommended.

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Photo of avalon07
4.42/5  rDev +10%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a bottle to a goblet. Had a dark brown, opaque appearance. Gave a quarter inch head.

Had a bready smell, with a predominant nuttiness. It gives a pretty strong, yet somewhat sweet aroma.

The nutty quality of this beer comes through the most. Also evident is the yeast and some mild dark fruits. Very tasty.

Had a decent mouthfeel. Not overly carbonated, but still had a nice bite to it.

If you like brown ales this is one of the better examples of this style. It's definitely a drinkable beer.

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Photo of danend
3.46/5  rDev -13.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Aroma : Some spicy alcohol. Figs, bread, nutty and toasty notes. Some phenolic spiciness, but not extreme. A slight honey like sweetness. A little lacking in complexity for a brune.

Appearance : Brilliant mahogany. A nice tan head that lingers forever.

Flavor : Nutty, malty and alcoholic sweetness. A slight chocolate flavor with grapes and figs very faintly in the finish.

Mouthfeel : Warming on the swallow. Finishes a touch on the sweet side, nice carbonation.

Overall : A very drinkable brune. if they kicked up the aroma on this beer it would be all the better. A great all around beer, but not one I'll dream about on my deathbed.

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Photo of StoutPiper
3.86/5  rDev -4%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 4.5

It's black, and looks heartier than it is. If Great Lakes' Dortmuder Gold and a porter had a baby, this would be it.

Like all of this Abbey's brews, the smell on this one is extremely understated. but it looks beautiful in the snifter from the same gift box. the head was about an inch thick, with big bubbles; it took awhile to dissapear.

I opened it about five minutes ago, and the first thing i thought of upon smelling/tasting was Meijer's spiced rum. This, however, is not extremely accurate.

After ameliorating for several minutes the progression of sipping this beer went as follows: The smell is all roasted nuts, the taste is completely dark chocolate, which is extremely pleasant. Then i realize that (like every other beer brewed by this abbey ) it is way too strong on the tongue. Overcarbonation is a huge drawback of this brewery, and if they could get past that, i think they would really be able to contend for one of the best classic belgian abbey-brewers.

Overall, out of the three beers in the gift set (blonde,tripel, and brown) this is the best, and most complex. Worth a taste, I'm sure you will enjoy!

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Photo of RblWthACoz
4.25/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pours a clear dark ruby with minimal off white head. If you pour the whole bottle in (sediment and all), you get a cloudy ruby (and the nose is noticeably more yeasty). Nose is a cross of old grape skins and cherries with a syrup edge. Flavor is pretty interesting. Starts off tangy and almost bitter in a way. Constant sweet tone with a doughy edge to it towards the tail end. With all the sediment in there, the subtle changes are less noticeable and it tends to stay an even, slightly caramel brew. Feel has a great level of carbonation on it. Pretty drinkable, though that 8% will get to ya quick.

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Photo of faernt
4.47/5  rDev +11.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I've been drinking this beer for years. I opened this one to find it to be a fresh batch brewed in 10.07. It's 12.07 now...the delights of the global economy abound. There seems to be a lot going on in this freshie. The sourness and sweetness are competing for my attention. The head is tight bubbled and persistent: maintaining a creamy lace down the side of the glass and a solid skim of pillowy head across the surface of this deeply brown beer.

I've spent too much time deliberating over the age of a beer. l'm overgeeked! "Is it at its best now?" Geez! what a pain! This is fresh stuff and it's really good. It's great to have something out of the kettle and great to taste. I feel liberated from the annoying deliberation of appropriateness. Drink it now. This is good (really good) fresh. No waiting is required.

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Photo of Halcyondays
4.4/5  rDev +9.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

On-tap at Naja's Place in Redondo, just a few miles west of the 405,

A: Pours a mild, cloudy brown, with a thick, off-white head, leaving nice lacing in the tulip-shaped Sam Adams Black Lager glass it was served in.

S: Nice smell of malt and sugar, molasses.

T: Very tasty, tastes of rum and brandy, the rum more so, with a thick malt current, backed with dark fruit and prunes. Raisins also play a heavy part. The beer is very yeasty and quite estery, with a slight hint of clove and banana. Figuring out the flavours is hard in this beer, it's got a lot going on.

M: Smooth and thick, rich, creamy, full-bodied, slighty medicinal and phenolic as well, got a light feel of band-aids on a couple sips, but overall, very good.

D: This is a really good beer, very tasty on-tap, surprised me a little bit of how good it was, I'll definitely order this again, a great brown beer.

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Photo of bigdeuce
3.48/5  rDev -13.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a nice dark brown that you cannot penetrate. Leaves nice lacing and pours pillowy head which follows your sips down the tulip. Smells of peaches, apricots, and pears. Taste is very fruity. Twingy pears and apricots pleasure the taste buds. Very warming..nice fall-winter brew. Pretty drinkable, although high in alcohol. Does have a slight alcohol taste that can be perceived as unpleasant. Is very sour as well. A decent overall dubbel.

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Photo of yemenmocha
4.42/5  rDev +10%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours deep brown that is nearly opaque. White head has micro sized bubbles that leave a sexy lace.

Nose is alive! Plenty of fresh baked goods, yeasty/estery notes, and vanilla icing.

Palate is sweet roasted malts, brownie, brown sugar, cola, and candy sugar. Very mellow, sweet, and hard to find a flaw.

Finish is medium long and rather sweet. More cola on the finish. Very nice.

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Photo of sleazo
4.06/5  rDev +1%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A-Dark chocolate brown with a nice beige head. Good retention, decent lacing.

S-light aroma, slightly roasted malt quality here.

T-Slightly bitter with a powdered cocoa quality. The cocoa is pronounced, but this does not have the typical sweetness I associate with dubbels. As it warms, hints on rum soaked raisins and cola peek through.

M-Medium bodied with a mild yet pleasant carbonation.

D-This was not what i was expecting. This is dangerously good. not really sweet, it was more bitter with high quality cocoa beingn the dominant flavour. Very nicely done.

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Val-Dieu Brune from Brasserie de l'Abbaye du Val-Dieu
90 out of 100 based on 170 ratings.