Ovila Abbey Dubbel
Sierra Nevada Brewing Co.

Ovila Abbey DubbelOvila Abbey Dubbel
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3.84 | pDev: 11.72%
Sierra Nevada Brewing Co.
California, United States
Retired (no longer brewed)
Very Good
Ovila Abbey DubbelOvila Abbey Dubbel
Reviews: 456 | Ratings: 1,038 | Log in to view all ratings and sort
Photo of Brolo75
Brolo75 from California

3.93/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

750 ml bottle poured into a chalice

A: Pours a light mahogany with a light khaki head, beer looks hazy, not a lot of carbonation, looks lighter in body and color than other dubbels I've tasted.

A: Very sweet, brown sugar, cherries, red grapes, touch of spice, slight banana and honey in the finish, subtle aromas.

T: Follows the nose, sweet, brown sugar with notes of dark cherries, red grapes, and wine-like notes, touch of spice with a moderate amount of bitterness in the middle, finish has subtle notes of banana and honey, very smooth and drinkable.

M: Nice creamy, smooth mouthfeel with a good amount of carbonation.

O: This showed up about three months ago at my local bottle shop, so I think this bottle is aged as the flavors and aroma are muted compared to other dubbels I've tasted, overall, very drinkable.

Jan 20, 2017
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puck1225 from Texas

4.21/5  rDev +9.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Found a bomber at a Whole Foods in Dallas. Poured a nice creamy head with great lacing, and a beautiful deep brown. The smell was sweet and fruity. The taste had cherry, vanilla, prunes and other dark fruit. Very nice!

Jan 31, 2016
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rodbeermunch from Nevada

3.79/5  rDev -1.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Substantially deep and dark red pour, crimson, looks menacing and awesome all at the same time with a full half inch of white head off white head on it. Quite the complex bread grains going on with belgian spice rack.

Lots of caramel and more bread. Toffee. 2 row substantial. Perfect carbonation for the mouthfeel.

This is a damn good dubbel, nicely done, the spice rack in the aroma doesn't intrude at all in the mouf.

Jan 18, 2016
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pat61 from Minnesota

4.25/5  rDev +10.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Pours hazy brown with a pillowy white foam cap that rises above the rim of the glass. Fruit and malt aromas. Rich malts with a light fresh fruit and dark dried fruit. Starts sligyhtly sweet but finishes dry. Medium full body and above average carbonation. Domestic Dubbel tastes imported.

Aug 04, 2015
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mothmanscott from Georgia

3.74/5  rDev -2.6%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Pours an almost clear deep gold producing only a finger of foamy, shortlived, white head that leaves no lace. Aroma is candy apple, candy sugar & honey sweet with hints of other white fruits, clove & other spices. Taste is sweet with honey notes, cobbler dough, yeasty white fruits, spice & pepper. No definitive hoppiness. Alcohol is prominent in the forms of warmth & booziness & what bitterness is in evidence is probably from the alcohol as well. Finish is sweet but rapidly transitions to an initially bittersweet aftertaste that in time becomes semi-dry & somewhat astringent. Mouthfeel is medium-heavy bodied with medium carbonation, syrupy, even a little sticky, but smooth & creamy with only a little prickle at the end.

Feb 04, 2015
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Treyliff from West Virginia

3.69/5  rDev -3.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.75

Cork top bottle, poured into chalice. Bottles 2011, I believe

A- pours a deep purple-brown color with a small fizzy white head that dissapates almost immediately, leaving nothing behind

S- lots of dark fruity notes in the nose with an emphasis on black cherry, fig & plumb. Caramelized brown sugar sweetness, with some herbal & earthy spice to close it out

T- dark cherry notes up front mix with hints of licorice, brown sugar sweetness with caramel & toffee notes, medicinal and peppery spice kick in, eventually finishing dry and earthy from the yeast

M- medium body with low carbonation produces a slightly watery mouthfeel that finishes slick with a bit if warmth

O- all the elements of a classic Dubbel, just doesn't quite mesh as well as some if the Classic Belgian examples

Dec 21, 2014
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avwrite from California

4.66/5  rDev +21.4%

Was skeptical because it was a dubbel from Sierra Nevada. I'm fond of their pale ales but haven't tried much else. Safe to say, I enjoyed it. Had a nice, dark brown color, smooth taste, sweetness, and some bitterness. I would drink it again.

Aug 27, 2014
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TheTrevor from New York

3.44/5  rDev -10.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

This beer poured a golden color with some visible carbonation and not much in the way of head. The smell is a little citrusy, probably the oranges they used. The taste is very sweet up front, like some of the candi sugar didn't ferment all the way. Perhaps it's my unsophisticated palate, but I'm not getting any of the pepper or orange notes. The mouthfeel is smooth, with some warming from the alcohol. It's not bad, but my heathen tastebuds proclaim it's not the holy concoction they make it seem like on the label.

Aug 03, 2014
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superspak from Ohio

4.1/5  rDev +6.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

750 ml bottle into chalice, bottled on 2/21/2011. Pours fairly crystal clear deep ruby red color with a 1 finger dense light khaki head with good retention, that reduces to a thin cap that lingers. Light spotty soapy lacing clings on the glass, with a fair amount of streaming carbonation. Aromas of raisin, plum, cherry, pear, apple, fig, caramel, brown sugar, toast, brown bread, light chocolate, clove, herbal, light pepper, and yeast/toasted earthiness. Very nice aromas with good balance and complexity of fruity/earthy yeast and dark/bready malt sweetness; with good strength. Taste of raisin, plum, cherry, fig, pear, apple, caramel, brown sugar, toast, brown bread, light chocolate, clove, herbal, light pepper, and yeast/toast earthiness. Light earthy yeast spice on the finish; with lingering notes of raisin, plum, cherry, pear, apple, fig, caramel, brown sugar, toast, brown bread, light chocolate, clove, herbal, light pepper, and yeast/toast earthiness on the finish for a while. Damn nice complexity and robustness of fruity/earthy yeast and dark/bready malt sweetness; with a great malt/yeast balance and zero cloying flavors after the finish. Medium carbonation and body; with a very smooth, fairly crisp, and lightly slick/bready mouthfeel that is great. Alcohol is well hidden with minimal warming present after the finish. Overall this is an excellent dubbel style. All around great complexity and balance of fruity/earthy yeast and dark/bready malt sweetness; and very smooth to sip on. A very enjoyable offering.

Jul 26, 2014
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CowsandBeer from Nebraska

3.81/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.5

Cork and caged 12.7 ounce bottle poured into an Achel Trappist glass. Unknown bottled on date. Served chilled.

Appearance: Poured straight down the middle of the glass produced a huge four fingers of off white head. Thin foam with lots of little bubbles. Body is a reddish brown with red highlights. Lots of little bubble action in the body. Eventually only a thin ring was left.

Smell: A very inviting aroma. Lots of dark bread malts, chocolate, candi sugar sweetness, some leathery dried fruit aromas, grassyness and earthy yeast.

Taste: More of the same with sweet dark malts and bread crusts, chocolate, dried fruit sweetness and a very bready finish. Some grassy bitterness.

Mouthfeel: Feels almost flat. Slightly warming. Some prickly carbonation would certainly breath some life into this beer make some of the sweeter fruit flavors pop.

Overall: A dubbel with a very inviting aroma and taste. Lots of dark break crust and chocolate with some sweet dried fruits. However, a lifeless looking body with an equally lifeless mouthfeel really brings the beer down. Some major carbonation would make this a great dubbel.

Apr 28, 2014
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BigGold from Mississippi

3.89/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

First had this Dubbel back in 2012, and several times into 2015 and 2016, and then found another bottle in the back of the beer fridge in March 2020.

After all that time, the head is barely there and then gone, but the malty whiskey smell, malty peppery flavor and bitter hop finish remain.

Feb 27, 2014
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GreesyFizeek from New York

3.94/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

They almost completely nailed the style here. The only knock is it feels a little bit too sweet, maybe, with dark fruit, caramel, toffee, and baked bread, with some yeasty sweetness, and a bit of molasses. It's quite tasty, but not quite all the way there.

Jan 31, 2014
Photo of nsheehan
nsheehan from Texas

3.69/5  rDev -3.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Ovila Dubbel
12.7oz to Duvel deco glass
7.5% ABV
Bought March 2012?

A – Dark brown, nearly opaque. The tiniest bit of translucence. After drinking most of it, I can see yeast near the bottom. I credit them with bringing out a more Belgian taste as the beer warms/I get to the bottom.

S – Dark fruits in the nose, especially cherries and plums. Some alcohol and a tiny bit of cocoa. A bit of a mandarin orange and grassy smell. As it warms it smells sweeter and a bit bready. The mandarin orange and grass is gone.

T – Surprisingly dark fruity taste, and not very belgiany. I’m not picking up much of the bready sweetness that nearly defines Belgian dark ales. I get a little bit of sweetness on the swallow, but the main taste is like a dark saison: a saison that’s a little maltier and darker tasting than the average saison. It’s refreshing but unexpected, and I think it’s off-style. As it warms it becomes a bit sweeter, but not in the bready way, and the alcohol comes out more. As I get to the bottom, I can taste the yeast hanging out there and the taste becomes more Belgiany.

M – Medium bodied but light on the swallow. Pretty soft and refreshing with a bit of zing around the edges of the tongue. Goes down smooth and finishes with a nice, low level of dryness.

O – Pretty tasty and hit the spot for a warm day in Texas. But it’s not very Belgiany, so I’m inclined to say it’s not to style, and rate as so. I think the Xingu black beer I rated last was a bit similar.
4, 3.75, 3.5, 4, 3.75; 3.7.

Sep 12, 2013
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stephenjmoore from Maryland

4.17/5  rDev +8.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

A- Murky brownish/burgandy body with a thin, bubbly cream-colored head. Head leaves quickly, but a thin layer of bubbles stay around for a while.

S- Big fruity aromas of raisins and plums, with some caramel malt and spicy yeast flavors present as well.

T- Way more malt comes through in the flavor than in the nose. Big caramel malts give way to sweet dried fruits and lots of peppery yeast. Hints of grains and clove in the finish.

M- Full bodied, medium-high carbonation level. Very nice feel for a Belgian style ale.

O- A very solid dubbel that smells fantastic. Huge, full flavor for a 7.5% abv beer.

Sep 07, 2013
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mattkoon from South Carolina

3.82/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

i like this beer because for a beer with a potential to be overpowering- sierra nevada made it really drinkable. the color is a cloudy brown. there isnt much going on in the way of smell. the flavor has a lot of dark chocolate and spices and fruits but the back end of this beer is really mild- which makes it more drinkable than i expected.

Jul 30, 2013
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LibrariansLoveBEER from South Carolina

3.83/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

I don't have much experience with this style, but I'm always looking to expand my horizons (beer-wise) so I decided to give it a try. I picked this up at Bill's in town after a recommendation from Joshua. Thanks Josh!

12 oz. bottle poured into a goblet

A: dark brown almost black, like coffee. Half-inch tan head, minimal lacing down the side.

S: Sweet, alcohol is up front, boozy. Smells fruity, yeasty.

T: Cherry, a bit boozy at first but not so bad after the first sip.

M: Medium and creamy. Smooth finish.

Overall: I am not a fan of this style but this beer was much better than I expected.

Jul 20, 2013
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alaimoa from Connecticut

2.74/5  rDev -28.6%
look: 3 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.75

Pours deep brown with reddish tones. Smell has a boozy caramel. Taste of sugary alcohol, caramel, sticky, sweet limited complexity. Mouthfeel is sticky sweet and just ok.
Overall nothing that special about this beer. Very sticky and caremel sweetness overwhelms

Jul 05, 2013
Photo of Jadjunk
Jadjunk from Georgia

3.7/5  rDev -3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

"Ovila Abbey Dubbel is complex and malty with hints of caramelized sugar, dark fruit, and peppery spice from the unique Belgian abbey-style yeast. A portion of proceeds goes toward the restoration of the historic Óvila chapter house on the grounds of the Abbey of New Clairvaux." Brewed in the style of a Belgian Dubbel. My first entry into the Ovila series, this second release was repackaged into miniature bottles, individually corked & caged and sold in 4-packs for multiple sessions. I like it far better than the original packaging concept. It seems this may not be returning any time soon, if at all in its original form. *Note: Beware the cork! This one's quite an explosive beer with a ton of pressure built up inside. The cork launched off by itself shortly after i removed the cage.*

Poured from an 11.5 oz bottle to an Ovila Goblet. Served north of 54º Fahrenheit.

(Appearance) Pours a frothy copper cream head of a light crisp consistency. Body color is a copper brown with mild sediment and mild, relaxed carbonation. Retention is average, this one sizzles for a while yet doesn't quite die down so easily, thickening up to a nice, unbroken solid creamy layer with a subtle bubble roll. Lacing is light and clingy. It's a good appearance, a touch more lively than expected. 4

(Smell) Aromas are very fruit-forward with sweet red grapes, tart cherries, trace dates and figs, very clean and with a mellow tartness. Paired with a bready malted barley and mellow spices like clove and trace nutmeg, the balance is nice although the potency is medium at best. It's a very entertaining aroma if not particularly complex nor deep, it is exciting for fans of clean, light and fruity Belgian beers. 4

(Taste) Up front a fainter grape malt profile, rounded out to a more biscuity and bready malted barley as the main attraction, with a very faint Belgian spice blend, no more than a touch of coriander, white pepper and clove to accentuate a mildly dry finish accentuated by murky cherry. Some boozy characteristics linger in the midsection, likely out in the open due to the general lightness of this beer. Drinkable certainly, but not incredibly complex. I was let down by the further reservation of fruit character and a much more shallow malt and yeast depth than the nose predicted. Balance is slightly acidic over sweet, just not enough malt power to justify an ideal balance. 3.5

(Mouthfeel) Thin malt depth for a subtle slickness but a mellow carbonation goes for quite the creamy texture, almost a nitrous consistency head that muffles a lot of the subtle flavor. Body is light for the style, just not full enough on malt depth and sweetness to balance it out right. Alcohol presence is above medium, not very well concealed. While I enjoy the texture overall it doesn't settle as ideally as it would with a deeper, more heavily-bodied brew. I couldn't see it working any better with a more brisk carbonation texture, so this will have to do. 3.5

(Overall) I hate to come down hard on this beer, but I've enjoyed better and more tasty Dubbels before and this one just isn't a game changer. I felt it came off far too light in the malt profile and the fruit notes as well as the yeast profile had to be equally subdued to round it out. Overall the potency and depth is just too shallow to be memorable. While I'm not closing the book on this series this is not the best start and certainly not my ideal take on the style. It would settle best for those who want a drinkable, moderately spiced Dubbel that isn't overly sweet nor potent. This fits that niche but it's capable of going so much farther than that. 3.75

Sierra Nevada Brewing Co.'s
Óvila Dubbel

Jun 24, 2013
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Oakenator from Pennsylvania

4.23/5  rDev +10.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

A: Pours a darker brown with a creamy white head. Head disappates to nothing and leaves little lacing on the glass.

S: Good hefty malting and some candi sugar is present via the nose.

T: Large malt dosing up front and followed by the candi sugar sweetener. Great flavor.

M: Despite the somewhat flat look after a few minutes it still has a nice carbonation in in the mouth but definitely a brew with some heft.

O: Great brew.

Jun 21, 2013
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Roose13 from New Jersey

3.91/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Bottle poured into a pint glass

A: transparent dark amber/brown. Half-inch off-white head, lacing down the side.

S: yeast; caramel; a bit sweet. I detect cherry and some other darker fruit notes

T: subtle cherry and caramel. A bit syrupy and malty. Spicy and a bit boozy

M: Medium and creamy. Very smooth finish.

Overall: Heard a lot of great things on this but it just didn't blow me away like I expected it to from the reviews I got. Still a fair beer overall.

May 20, 2013
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beagle75 from Iowa

3.83/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a 750 ml bottle into a tulip glass.

A: Clear, dark amber color with over one finger of persistent offf-white foam head. Light lacing remains on the glass.

S: Cookie-like, more doughy than yeast-affected, even unctuous at times. Malt qualities are a satisfying combination of Belgian aromatic and crystal. There is some aspect of floral and fruity perfume present, as well as coconut.

T: Begins off-dry, with focused yet nuanced malt that yields some definite molasses. Vigorous acidity buoys the overall mood, maintaining a balance between bright and dark qualities but diluting some of the flavors most worth contemplating. Delicacy remains the theme in the middle, where light esters evoke rose water. The nature of this beer's flavors become more transformed deeper into the profile, and also as it warms, yet phenolic-derivative Belgian yeast character remains elusive throughout.

M: Medium viscosity, slightly wet and acidic on the palate, with moderate carbonation.

D/O: This approachable beer serves as a splendid introduction to stronger ales for the novice, fully able to delight the palate without providing much of the challenge inherent in most authentic abbey beers from Belgium. It also possesses a depth of character that unfolds with time and repeated exposure by the drinker, even though the first glimpse is of something simple and straightforward--even compromised. As a result, this California Abbey ale is adaptable to many situations; do not hesitate to serve early in a series, or with lighter fare such as fruits and salads.

May 19, 2013
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BeerRefugee from Oklahoma

4.02/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Pours a dark caramel brown. Medium beige head with good retention. Aroma is cherries and toffee. Flavor is similar, with just a bit of spice to go with some sweet toffee flavor. Slightly more carbonated than most dubbels, but not hugely so. A very nice beer that I drank fresh, but would probably benefit from a bit of aging.

Apr 19, 2013
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CHickman from New York

3.85/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Small bottle format review from 3/31: pours very hazy chestnut brown color with a creamy 1 finger tan head that faded and left minimal spotty lacing. Lots of bubbles race up the brew like a champagne.

Smells of caramel, yeast, malt, dark fruit, cherry, herbs, a general sweetness and light spices. Nice notes and quite a combo of things, but nothing really stands out.

Tastes like it smells, with caramel, yeast, malt, dark fruit, cherry, herbs, booze like rum, malt, sweet bread like cinnamon raisin bread and light spices like pepper, coriander and cinnamon; not overly sweet, but fruity enough to tame the yeast and let the booze peek through in a nice way.

Mouthfeel is very smooth and almost watery, with a medium body, very light carbonation and a slightly funky finish.

Overall nice and easy to drink, but very much an American impression that falls short of the Belgian classics. I’d like to try a big bottle to really see how it progresses as it warms up; this review was quick and at the end of the night, so it was a bit rushed. I will try it again with an open mind.

Apr 03, 2013
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budgood1 from Minnesota

3.22/5  rDev -16.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 3.25

pours out a deep and dark chestnut colour with a massive light tan head showing off some sturdy staying power. burnt brown sugar malt aroma with some chocolate pudding, ripe red fruit and peppery spice in the nose. the flavour profile is similar to the nose with more accentuated malt flavours such as caramel and nougat, candi sugar, cocoa, and belgian yeast. alcohol is certainly present throwing down some peppery spice with a nicely placed hop bite on the back end. tastes pretty nice. it's fairly full bodied, accompanied by a mellow mouthfeel . drinkability is nice, but this dubbel doesn't leave me waxing poetic.

overall i would say that this is really middle of the road for an abbey dubbel. it's not overly complex or compelling in any way. glad i got to try it but probably won't revisit.

Mar 15, 2013
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Scotchboy from Idaho

3.68/5  rDev -4.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Apparently I will buy any thing this cheap that is corked and caged...12.7 into a Jackie O's tulip...

A: Brown color with ruby tints...sediment hazed...one finger off-white head fades quickly. No lace really..

S: Bready, some grape, sweet malts, raisins, hint of plum, yeasty, light spice, faint wine characteristics.

T: More of the same; malt, bready sweetness bordering on caramel. Some dark candy sugar, dark fruits and red apple, dry Belgian yeast, and some indecipherable spice notes.

MF: Medium mouthfeel, with moderate/strong carbonation that seemed typical to the bottle-conditioned style.

O: Dubbels are tough for me; usually nothing really stands out to me and this one is no different. Ok but not special.

Mar 05, 2013
Ovila Abbey Dubbel from Sierra Nevada Brewing Co.
Beer rating: 86 out of 100 with 1038 ratings