Ovila Abbey Saison | Sierra Nevada Brewing Co.

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Ovila Abbey SaisonOvila Abbey Saison
Very Good
772 Ratings
Ovila Abbey SaisonOvila Abbey Saison

Brewed by:
Sierra Nevada Brewing Co.
California, United States

Style: Saison / Farmhouse Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 7.00%

Availability: Limited (brewed once)

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by BeerAdvocate on 03-15-2011

This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

Bros Score:
User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 772 |  Reviews: 263
Photo of ej285701
4/5  rDev +4.2%

Photo of spointon
3.63/5  rDev -5.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

This will be my second beer from the SN - Ovila line of ales (the Dubbel was my first). I have long awaited these beers as I am a big fan of both Belgian ales and Sierra Nevada. I poured this one from a unique 750ml bottle that looked like an over sized bomber bottle.

A= This ale poured an orangey gold color with a 1" white head that was pretty restrained for the style. Cloudy, with a steady carbonation release. The head retention was truly awesome, keeping a thick foamy cap going for a long time. Decent lace/stickage.

S= This smells of sweet pils malt, candi sugar, and a big ester kick of citrusy fruit. Faint dusty yeast present as well.

T= Started off with a battle between the sweet pils malt and the fruity esters. Epic citrus flavors of tangerine and orange going on here. Powdery yeast adds some Belgian character, but what it adds is more reminiscent of a tripel than a saison. The alcohol was well in check, yet noticeable enough to cut the sweetness considerably and add some complexity of its own. No hop flavors to speak of, but enough hop bitterness to balance the sweet end of things. Finished nice and dry.

MF= Well attenuated light-ish body with a decent carbonation level. I think the body was fine but the carbonation could stand to be upped a touch.

D= This is a very drinkable ale and one that I found quite enjoyable. As with the Ovila Dubbel however, I find this to be lacking in Belgian character. The flavor reminded me more of a tripel than a saison. In my opinion, saisons are extremely complex and this is lacking in that depth of complexity. Still, a well brewed beer that I would drink again with pleasure.

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Photo of patm1986
5/5  rDev +30.2%

Photo of wyatt
4/5  rDev +4.2%

Photo of lpotter
4.25/5  rDev +10.7%

Photo of rrryanc
5/5  rDev +30.2%

Photo of Lawnboy33
4/5  rDev +4.2%

Photo of Travisnin
4/5  rDev +4.2%

Photo of BelgianDip
4/5  rDev +4.2%

Photo of trixdout
4/5  rDev +4.2%

Photo of garuda
4/5  rDev +4.2%

Photo of rapidsequence
3.8/5  rDev -1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

750 ml bottle. Bought this at Tasty Beverage, not sure the price.

Appearance: Slightly hazy light golden color. Huge, soft, billowy head. Excellent head retention. Not a whole lot of lacing.

Smell: Musty yeast, lemons, apples, white grapes. Earthy, slightly herbal.

Taste: Bitter citrus pith-- bitter, but not tart. More musty yeast. A little grassy, earthy hops. More bitterness in the finish. The bitterness really detracts for me.

Mouthfeel: Nice and soft upfront, dry, bitter finish.

Overall: Looks great, smells good, tastes too bitter.

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Photo of russpowell
4.33/5  rDev +12.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Review from notes:

Pours a semi-hazed honey color with 2+ fingers of cream colored head. Great head retention & lacing

S: Lemon grass, white pepper & hay

T: Pineapple, grassyness, some bready notes, white pepper & subdued phenolic notes up front. Pineapple & apricot as this warms, more phenols & some dryness. Finishes with pineapple, dryness, grassyness& grainy bread notes

MF: Medium bodied, subtle carbonation, nice balance. Carbonation becomes creamy as this warms along with a touch of coarseness

Really enjoyed this, liked this way more than the dubbel

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Photo of stercomm
3.92/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured from a bomber.

A- Hazy honey light orange in color, nice white head very frothy.

S - Getting lemons and oranges, also get a sense of a freshly cut lawn in the summer, slight malts.

T - Lemons and oranges continue, along with a nicely balanced maltiness, slight spice - peppery on the finish.

M - medium bodied, medium carbonation.

O - Very refreshing saison, nicely balanced, alcohol very subdued.

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Photo of korguy123
4/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A- Dark yellow pour with a soapy white head that sticks around momentarily. Lacing hangs on for a good while.

S- Lemon and peach with a sweet touch of mandarin. There is a earthy/grassy note that makes it very light and refreshing. The yeast is subtle and makes you feel like you're in the bakery.

T- Lemon and peach with a bright grassy flavor. Yeast is subtle and wonderful. Alcohol is invisible.

M- Medium bodied with subtle carbonation. Light and refreshing.

O- Another excellent SN beer. Another excellent saison.

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Photo of Mora2000
4/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

The beer pours a hazy yellow color with a large white head. The aroma is full of fruit, with some orange and peach notes. I also get some Belgian yeast as well as some wheat and biscuit malt.

The flavor is also very fruity. I get oranges, peaches and apricots, as well as some wheat and biscuit malt. There is a nice amount of spice, mainly coriander and white pepper. There is also a little bit of alcohol. Overall, the fruit in this beer is very juicy tasting and goes very well with the other saison notes.

Medium mouthfeel and medium carbonation.

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Photo of nataku00
3.58/5  rDev -6.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

On tap poured into a straight sided glass. Beer is pale yellow with a finger of foamy off white head. Decent head retention with some sticky lacing on the glass, took several minutes before it receded to a half a finger collar. Some decent carbonation, small bubbles streaming up from the bottom of the glass.

Nose is a pretty standard saison, earthy, herbal with biscuit malts, some fruity yeast esters.

Taste is earthy and herbal flavors, with some of the fruity esters initially, then mostly malt sweetness through to the medium finish. Some lingering earthiness on the tongue. Tastes similar to a light Saison DuPont, but with fewer yeast traits.

Light to medium body with nice zesty carbonation to really keep it crisp and light on the tongue. Great warm weather beer. Decent but unremarkable saison.

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

Pours a hazy peach color with a big white head that falls pretty quick but laces well.

Aroma is bready malts nice tropical fruits mango, apple, pear mingled together with yeast and spicy pepper. Some light funky notes and hints of chalk.

Taste is on par with the nose fruity malty with bursts of carbonation that leads to the funk and big doses of spice. Pretty good Saison but fruitiness seems slightly over ridden by the spice.

Mouthfeel is good light side of medium with pretty peppy carbonation that makes an impact on this brew.

Overall pretty enjoyable, maybe not world class but good enough to pick up another for sure.

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Photo of Slatetank
4.27/5  rDev +11.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

I enjoyed this bottle at Bully's on Main in Columbia PA.

The color is a slightly dark than golden, perhaps apricot color with slight haze and pillowy thick white cream which has average sized bead and is visibly carbonated with subtle lace. The smell is very pleasant with a strong yeast aroma with slight tart wheat tang in the nose w/ light toasted grain and mild tropical fruit accents. The body is semi-full with moderately strong carbonation and moderate hop acidity with sliht creamy presence and light nutty/earthy texture with semi dry finish.

The taste of this saison is good with mostly tropical fruit from the yeast with a light tanginess from what I gather to be wheat with some hints of pineapple and almond with slight element of hops which could be adding floral notes, but seem to favor citrus with slight peppery and herbal quality. The yeast and malt work together to make a light spice and bready flavor which is very pleasant with light woody notes and mild toasted sweetness. The Saison works for me on the drinkability, I really enjoyed this and could have consumed the whole bottle if I wasn't sharing it with my wife and friend Steve.

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Photo of dgilks
4.08/5  rDev +6.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Hazy golden amber colour with a big, rocky, off-white head. Good head retention.

Big, candy like, spicy aroma with notes of coriander, clove and banana. Mild hard fruit esters.

Creamy malt gives way to mild pear and stone fruit notes. The spicing is strong with plenty of pepper and coriander. A touch of earthy bitterness adds depth. Quite good.

Medium body with moderately-high carbonation. Good.

A really nice American Saison that is better than many other examples. Supremely drinkable and refreshingly dry, this is a good beer.

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Photo of mltobin
4.12/5  rDev +7.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

From the bottle, poured into a wine glass.

The appearance of this saison from Sierra Nevada is a cloudy orange tone with a one finger sized off-white head. Its` nose has grass, fruit, yeast and some floral hops. The taste hits you with pepper, some honey, white grapes, other fruit and some other spices that I cannot pinpoint. Mouthfeel is crisp with a dry finish. A very good beer and I am most certainly happy with the first 2 beers from this series that I have tried. Looking forward to trying the next one.

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Photo of Crossmd
3.93/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Poured 44 degrees Fahrenheit into a shaker pint. No born date.

Pours a hazy orange with a hint of yellow and a very substantial, thick eggshell head.

Smells lightly of apricot, clove and maybe a hint of banana? Not especially well projected.

Taste is thick, lush blend of florals and ripe fruits. A slight spiciness and a hint of what feels a lot like carrot? Finish is light and airy, with a pleasant uplifting texture that lingers well.

Overall, a relatively standard belgian with nothing tremendous to make it stand out. Very agreeable though, and certainly well made. Probably not going to try and grab again however, for almost $10USD a bomber.


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Photo of ChainGangGuy
4.35/5  rDev +13.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

750ml bottle - $9.49 at Olde Crabapple Bottle Shoppe in Alpharetta, Georgia.

Appearance: Pours a hazed, darkened gold body with a tall, white head that just fluffs out instantaneously.

Smell: Softly bready malts, with a bit of hinted at sweetness, a bit of tanginess to it, too. Little notes of lemony, zesty citrus, dew-moistened orchard fruits, and the humble banana. Modest spiciness.

Taste: Faintly grainy malts, some influences from malted wheat, maybe some pilsner as well. Light sweetness. Doughy, yeasty accents. Hint of sliced French loaf. Mild touches of bananas and tart orchard pears, maybe a sliver of Granny Smith apple and a couple basic white grapes, too. Pinch of finely ground spices. Sprinkling of flower petals. Scantly grassy, citrusy hops with ample bitterness present. A few drops of melon juice. Dry, fluffy finish with a light lingering tanginess.

Mouthfeel: Medium-light body. Highly carbonated keeps things lively throughout.

Overall: Presents a good blend of flavors (more and more as it opens up), closes out nicely dry, and has excellent carbonation all the while. I liked it.

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Photo of Haybeerman
4.12/5  rDev +7.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Clear gold color. Poured a 3 finger coarse white head with good retention to a 2 finger cap. Decanted continually. Laced the glass in thin, wavy rings.

S: Light-colored fruit; pear and white grape. Slight bready malt aroma commingles with sour funk. Earthy and herbal in the background. Very complex nose.

T: Fruit, malt and funk in the taste are very consistent with the nose. Add clover honey and coriander. Finish is slightly resiny, spicey and dry.

M: Light body. Ample carbonation; active in the glass and on the palate. Starts a little coating and creamy, but clears quickly with carbonation, spice and dry finish.

O: Complex; a lot going on - in a good way. Moderate ABV and odd balance make it very drinkable.

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Photo of Fatehunter
3.23/5  rDev -15.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Popped the cork and poured into a Westmalle chalice. Orange color with a finger of head that held.
Faint smell of orange zest, grapefruit and pear.
Tastes like bread, watery and dry.
Very bubbly, light body and smooth.
I really want to like this, but it is missing the flavor... a big hole there. However try it out... at least once.

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Ovila Abbey Saison from Sierra Nevada Brewing Co.
Beer rating: 3.84 out of 5 with 772 ratings