White Birch Dubbel | White Birch Brewing

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White Birch DubbelWhite Birch Dubbel
62 Ratings
White Birch DubbelWhite Birch Dubbel

Brewed by:
White Birch Brewing
New Hampshire, United States

Style: Dubbel

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 9.30%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
Belgain Style Dubbels have a history going back to the mid 1800s. Our interpretation of this style is a ruby mahogany colored beer highlighted by toffee, caramel and dark ripe fruit notes with a subtle dry finish. Great on it’s own or paired with chocolate, red meats or fish.

Added by barleywinebrewer on 10-22-2009

Bros Score:
User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 62 |  Reviews: 45
Reviews by wizo:
Photo of wizo
3.25/5  rDev +6.2%

More User Reviews:
Photo of lordofthewiens
3.3/5  rDev +7.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Batch One, bottled Feb 4, 2010. Bottle 306 of 315. In a goblet this beer was a pinkish brown color, almost like a dark rose wine. A small white head. Sweet fruit and caramel aroma. Caramel taste, also some tart apple. The mouthfeel was a bit on the piquant side. This was an OK beer, one I didn't think was a good example of a dubbel, and certainly not as good as other White Birch beers I've had.

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Photo of SunDevilBeer
1.66/5  rDev -45.8%
look: 2.5 | smell: 1.5 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 1.5

I don't usually write many reviews - especially after only sampling a beer, but this beer was so lacking it warranted a review.

Upon rasing the glass to my mouth, the 1st thought that crossed my mind was "cooked veggies" in the aroma. Things didn't improve during the taste...more of the same cooked veggie effect (specifically cauliflower), backed up by the taste of dirty socks. I immediately sought another beer to erase my palate.

I've read some articles about this brewery and the brewer seems like a nice guy, but this beer is unbelievably bad....especially at a price point of $15 per bomber! And this is the flagship???

If this is what is passing as "high-end/premium" beer nowadays, the craft beer business is in trouble.

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Photo of glid02
3.08/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Shared by jophish17 - thanks!

Pours a hazy tan color with a one-finger white head. The head recedes into a wispy layer on top leaving light lacing.

Smells of grainy toasted malts with hints of medium fruits - pears and green apples - and good amounts of phenols. To be honest it tastes like its infected though it doesn't smell like it will be undrinkable.

Yep, not undrinkable and in fact it tastes a bit better than it smells. Toasted and caramel malt flavors up front are quickly joined by good amounts of fruit flavors. As with the smell there are some medicinal flavors present and it doesn't taste quite right.

Mouthfeel is OK. The thickness is a bit on the thin side with moderate carbonation.

Drinkability is OK. I finished my glass but would not look forward to another.

Overall I've heard good things about this brewer and was a bit disappointed with the contents of this bottle. Perhaps it was just the bottle that was off and I hope so as I intend to give White Birch another shot.

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Photo of augustgarage
3.77/5  rDev +23.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Big thanks to ShogoKawada for this one! Batch One, Bottle 136 of 204. ABV is 6.7%. Bottled October 5, 2009.

Poured from a 22oz bomber into my Trappistes Rochefort goblet.

Clear tenné body with ECE/SAE amber highlights and a very thin but dense head of foam. Average retention and lacing.

Subtle but well balanced aromatics of layered malt, a hint of caramel, and fresh plums. Some carob as well.

Tart and lightly bitter palate entry, leading into a sweetness that quickly vanishes. Mid-palate there is briefly something like sesame and sugar candy. Slightly sour malt flavors joins a hint of citrus and cherries - suggesting alcohol and a touch of hops in the finish. Lightly bready, almost toasty aftertaste with faint berry fruit spread. Not quite what I was expecting for the style, but pretty good - especially for a first batch!

Slick but a little too light for me and lacking in effervesence. Curious if the mouthfeel was improved with later batches considering how much lower the ABV is for my bottle.

Surprisingly refreshing for the style - an imperfect but distinctive take on a Belgian classic.

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Photo of nickd717
3.53/5  rDev +15.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Bomber shared by alfrantzell I believe.

Pours slightly hazy reddish in color with an off-white head that fades to some swirly foam.

Aroma is very fruity - cherry and plum stand out - with caramel, brown sugar, and yeast.

Flavor is mildly sweet caramel malt, cherries and plums, maybe a little oak. A little oxidation maybe.

Medium-bodied with fairly lively carbonation.

Pretty decent for an American version of the style. Nobody else at the tasting liked it, but I thought it was solid.

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Photo of Gmann
3.6/5  rDev +17.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours a dirty dark brown color with some ruby highlights around the edges. The tan head is fairly small but its dense; settles into a light ring.

The aroma is fruity and not very strong. Dark fruits, perhaps plum or cherry, get things going. This transitions into an earthy carob like aroma. Some alcohol vapors and metallic notes pop through.

The taste starts off with a red grape fruitiness but quickly turns earthy and slightly bitter. Metallic notes and some stale chocolate give the dubbel an earthy edge. A touch woody. It doesn't have the sweetness that a typical dubbel has and I am not picking up much fruitiness or spiciness from the yeast.

The feel is light to moderate with very fizzy carbonation. This is quite a dry and bitter dubbel.

I feel that a good amount of dubbels get lost in what they are trying to be. The White Birch Dubbel isn't one of those. They went with an earthy, dry, and bitter dubbel and I found that to be a refreshing change of pace. I think it could use a touch more candi sugar sweetness but the earthiness is good.

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Photo of Kinsman
3.37/5  rDev +10.1%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Poured from bottle into chalice. Batch #2 Bottle 229 of 492. Bottled on April 22, 2010

To start things off, I really did not know what to expect from this Dubbel. There seems to be a lot of variety in the existing reviews, with descriptions of appearance ranging everywhere from golden colored to brown/ruby colored. I suspect there has been some variety in production, so now is the time for me to see for myself what this brew is all about.

Poured into my chalice, the body reveals a dark mahogany color with ruby accents, and is just about spot-on for a Dubbel. The tan colored head was rather disappointingl; dense but not very thick and poorly retained.

After an ok appearance, the aroma only slightly improved my impressions. Caramel and fruit greet the nose as well as a bit of a solvent like aroma. Nothing bad about this aroma, but nothing stellar either.

So far this beer started with an ok appearance with only a slightly better aroma, but oh my was the taste surprising. Sweet and fruity with other caramel and candy flavors coming in. Alcohol detected in the nose is masked by the flavors of the malt.

Mouthfeel again really made up for a poor start. Carbonation was a bit low, but it makes for a very smooth and balanced feel. Overall, a quite enjoyable dubbel that was a pleasant surprise.

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Photo of alleykatking
4.07/5  rDev +33%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Got this bottle in a trade with VanillaMike. Mike you made my day with this beer. Been wanting to try this for awhile now. Poured from 22oz bottle.

A- Poured a hazy rich golden orange color. One finger white head dies down to whisps on the top. Skirted light lacing was left on the glass while drinking.

S- Nice burst of some lemon citrus and raisins with this one in the front. The yeast they use comes up with a settle bready scent. Candy sugars come and go in hints all around the nose. There is a light alcohol presence in here as well.

T- Nice big bready yeasty flavors right off the get go with this. There is a light fruit flavor that is a little sweet for me...although I suspect the malts have some dealing with this as well. A light taste of alcohol in the tail end of this along with the candy sugars comes into play. Could taste light spicing in this as well but not enough to pick out what I was tasting.

M- Light mouthfeel. Carbonation was a little high for me. Pretty clean tasting through and through. Bready yeast flavor left on the palate and in the aftertaste along with some sweetness. A little drying..almost too much for me.

D- A nice drinkable dubbel that I would more than happy take another glass of. The things that I didn't care for by the end didn't bother me at all. I can't wait to try more from White Birch so VanillaMike watch out! Haha.

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Photo of puboflyons
3.91/5  rDev +27.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

From bottle number 287 of 315, Batch One, Bottled on February 4, 2010. Sampled on February 14, 2010. The pour is a rich brown color. No ruby or amber hints, just straight up brown, with only about a quarter inch of off-white head that diminishes quickly. The aroma is incredibly sweet and full of caramel malts and toffee. The mouthfeel is of medium body. The taste is about as sweet as the aroma with a delectable combination of toffee, sweet caramel, and butterscotch. There is nothing in the way of yeast or citrus in this bottle-fermented beer. It has the characteristics of an English Bitter rather than an Abbey Ale but it is still very likeable.

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Photo of Diomede
3/5  rDev -2%

Photo of MisterSH
3.53/5  rDev +15.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Bottle 49/204, batch 1, bottled 10/5/09, drank on 12/9/09. Poured into a duvel tulip.

Pours a rich orange brown with a nice head that fizzes away pretty quickly.
Smell is yeast, with nutty malt. I'm getting an herbal characteristic here that for lack of a better descriptor reminds me of sesame oil. Not as fruity as I expected - maybe a little bit of apricot in there somewhere. Not a hugely aromatic brew.

Taste is super dry. Wow, not what I was expecting at all here - Herbal, tea like earthiness, a bit nutty, some slight black pepper. Biscuity malt, slight effervesence on the exceptionally dry finish, tiniest little tickle of hops in there. No alcohol perceptible whatsoever, nor any fruit or sweetness. Brings to mind unsweetened ice tea.

Somewhat fluffy on the tongue, finishes watery clean. Carb is rather low/moderate.

An unusual dubbel. This is delicate and exceptionally nutty and earthy, at the expense of any dark fruitiness or sweetness which I found totally lacking. That said, on the other hand it's impressively dry, well constructed and cohesive, and quite complex. Not quite my cup of tea (pun intended), but certainly interesting. My least favorite White Birch Beer so far, but that's not an insult considering how exceptional the other three I've tried have been. Certainly worth a try.

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Photo of mikesgroove
4.08/5  rDev +33.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Bottle number 24 of the first batch of this gem. I was excited to try this and it started off my night of white birch goodies. Served cold and poured into a pint glass, this one was consumed on 11/13/2009.

The pour was really well done here with a nice amber color with a light hint of caramel around the edges, big head comes up and over the top and settles down gently into a firm and long lasting pillow with loads of side glass lacing. Aroma is nice, much sweeter then I was expecting. Lots of caramel and malts right up front here, light hint of an herbal note boucning around as well, but not terribly strong. Warming brings out a yeast note that is quite intresting and adds a light fruit touch to it, but very sweet still. Flavor again is very intresting and not what I was expecting. Rich notes of caramel and almost candied like sugar abound here. Light touches of hops play on the tongue now as well, very intresting. Comes across almost like an amber ale to me, has that bready maltiness and caramel flavor I associate with it. A bit thin on the feel but the carbonation really saves it and gives it that little bit of pop to pull you in. Soo nicely done that it goes down like candy and really just a smooth and really nice drinking beer.

Overall this one kinda confusues me. A bit light for a dubbel I have to admit but it was still a really well done beer. Needs a little bit more to make it excellent but this is really nice none the less.

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Photo of largadeer
1.5/5  rDev -51%

Photo of metter98
3.41/5  rDev +11.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A: The beer is hazy brownish amber in color and has a light to moderate amount of visible carbonation. It poured with a finger high dense beige head that quickly died down into a thin layer of bubbles that consistently covered the surface.
S: The smell isn't very strong but has some notes of dark fruits and spices in the aromas.
T: The taste has a slight amount of sweetness and flavors of caramel, dark fruits and toffee. There are also some notes of spices, which particularity stand out in the finish.
M: It feels light- to medium-bodied and smooth on the palate with a moderate to high amount of carbonation. There is a bit of dryness in the finish.
D: I had no problem finishing this beer; I'm just not sure if I would try another one of these because it didn't have as much maltiness compared to other beers in the style.

Note: Batch 4, Bottled December 10, 2010

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Photo of weeare138
4.12/5  rDev +34.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Sounds like I had a good batch of this, though mine was on tap. A few folks didn't fare so well out of bottled samples.
Appears a light haze of dark russet with mahogany edges and an off white head that slowly fades into a gentle cap. Scattered bits of lacing are left around the glass.
Smell is of vanilla, caramel, raisins, brown sugar, ripe fruit, and a touch of spice.
Taste is of the aromas with a ripe fig flavor pulling through with vanilla and brown sugar pulling up the rear with a touch of earthy mushrooms found among the flavors.
Moutfeel is medium bodied, sweet, evenly carbonated, and lip smacking with some residual Belgian candi sugar sticking around.

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Photo of GbVDave
3.95/5  rDev +29.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured from a 22oz bomber into a Loterbol tulip. Extra special thanks to Vanillamike for this from our recent trade!

Bottled October 5, 2009
Batch One
Bottle 29 of 204

A: Pours a nicely hazy, amber/honey color. The head was smallish and bright white. Retention was decent as was the carbonation. Some drooping ropes of lace were left behind. In the second pour a managed to swirl in all of the sediment which netted me a color closer to apricot nectar and a creamy light orange head.

S: Aromas of tangy fruit, biscuits, green tea, honey, dried wildflowers, and tart citrus. Completely different from what I was expecting, and I found that oddly appealing.

T: The initial pour was full of bready, bright/tart fruit and flowers. After I swirled in the sediment, it took on flavors of caramel, grapefruit, honey, and spices.

M: Perhaps a tad on the thin side. Get all the sediment in it and let it warm up and it begins to thicken. Takes on a bit of a spicy edge, too.

D: Not what I was expecting, but that can be a good thing. I was expecting sweet, dark, and malty and I got bright, tangy, and fruity. Nice!

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Photo of donkeyrunner
3.14/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

I've been on a Belgian kick as of late.

Large, vivacious beige head settles in to a tiny bubble blanket atop my beer. In my Allagash glass as the color ascends from yellow to amber to ruby red to burgundy. Beautiful color. Bill nailed the appearance.

Aroma is faint. Really faint actually. Plum, candi sugar, anis, wet earth and a floral hop reminiscent of lavender.

Taste mirrors the aroma with earthen plum and black cherry standing out. As faint as the aroma is, the taste is even more subtle.

This beer is...too perfect? No flaws jump out at me but nothing special comes out either. If this was in a contest you could check off every requirement and it would probably win in a BJCP competition. It's standard? Kinda boring.

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Photo of ppoitras
2.93/5  rDev -4.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

12oz bottle received in trade from VanillaMike. Thanks for the opportunity. Batch 1, Bottled 10/5/09, Bottle 71 of 204.

Poured into a Harpoon tulip, formed a 1/2" off-white head over the cloudy orangey amber brew. Head lasts well, rejuvenated by many bubbles from the bottom, with legs and chunky lasting lace. Aroma is spicy and earthy. Taste starts lightly sweet, goes apple-y tart in the middle, and closes dry. Mouthfeel is kind of thin and bubbly, and drinkability is okay. Not really what I was expecting in a dubbel.

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Photo of rpstevens
4/5  rDev +30.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a bottle into a white birch glass. The beer is a dark caramel color with a thick white head. As the head fades it leaves behind slight bubbly lacing.

The smell is rich toffee, caramel and some light tones of chocolate. There's also some crisp grassy hop notes that occasionally rear their head.

The smell is all well rounded, smooth toffee notes and biscuity malt. The grassy hops come and dry out the finish. There are also some light dark chocolate notes, very subtle but definitely there.

The beer is well carbonated, has a nice balanced flavor, and a nice dry finish.

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Photo of atlason
2.87/5  rDev -6.2%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

750ml bottle into tulip. Serving temperature from 48 to 55F. Batch 4.

A: Light brown, ample head dissipating fairly rapidly. No lacing.

S: Roasted and toasted malts dominate. Smells like a dry stout.

T: Metallic, not much Belgian yeast character. Strong roasted flavors with a touch of dark sugar.

M: Thin, lightly carbonated.

Overall this doesn't seem like a dubbel at all ? Somewhere between a stout and a Belgian strong dark ale.

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Photo of jlindros
4/5  rDev +30.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Got this with a big booty of White Birch on my way up to visit Bill at the Brewery. It's a great experience to go visit him if you can. Poured this right into my White Birch tulip glass.

A: A fizzy frothy 2 finger head fades super fast like its going out of style. It's the light airy big bubbles you get from some bottled conditioned ales. There are quite a few bubbles rising up to replace the dead ones though, so it retains a light head covering. It's semi clear with a slight hazy to its golden orange color.

N: Yeast comes right out. It has that aroma of opening a fresh wet yeast packet for you homebrewers. Below that comes some Belgian malts, sweet malts, and a touch of sugar. Some thick malt aromas, like a heavy red ale, come out as well with a sweet thickness. It has that thick sweet malt aroma that makes my brain want to think that it has a nice boozy aroma, but it never really hits.

T: Taste is also pretty yeasty. I get a lot of that strong fresh yeast flavors on first hit. Luckily they start to fade. A sweet Belgian malt taste starts to come out a little. Some interesting grassy like malts also touch the taste. It also has some light almost spices, but not quite. It maintains a pretty good dryness for how sweet the malts want to be, but never get there. Then a slight fruity taste also makes its way out. It also adds a slight earthy dirty rustic taste that one would get from a farmhouse style beer.

M: Light airy body with lots of carbonation.

F: Finishes pretty dry still. Once that yeasty flavor fades it has a light airy crispness to it with a touch of fruit that hits late. It finishes pretty quickly and then leaves your entire palate fresh and ready for another sip. A very slight metallic taste starts to hint at the back of your tongue but never comes out front. I think I'll leave my other bottle for a while and see how it ages, hopefully that yeasty quality will settle down. This might be my least favorite of all the White Birch beers.

UPDATE: New batch from Feb 4, 2010. A lot less yeast!!! Light sweet Belgian malts come on the nose and taste. A hint of Belgian candi sugar and some brown sugar, a very slight bit of tart fruit on teh taste. Some light bitterness with a nice dry finish. Much better this time around.

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Photo of nathanjohnson
2/5  rDev -34.6%

Photo of AgentZero
2.78/5  rDev -9.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2

A - Brown bodied beer with some orange in it. Bit of tan head that left a bit of stick on the glass.

S - Smells sweet, a little sugary. Maybe some spices. Doesn't smell like any Dubbel I've tasted.

T - Tastes more like a brown ale than anything else. Kind of reminds me of Moose Drool or whatever that brown ale is, or at least, a poorer version of it. Really tastes a bit like a cheap cola, think RC.

M - Too fizzy for the style, but perfect along the lines of trying to make a cola/beer hybrid. Medium bodied.

O - It's a pretty unoffensive beer, but it's not good, and it's not a dubbel. Guessing they misprinted some labels and then just used them anyway. Oh well, for them, this isn't a bad beer. Fails as a dubbel, but whatever.

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Photo of Ryan011235
1.28/5  rDev -58.2%
look: 1.5 | smell: 1 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 1.5 | overall: 1

Poured into a Rochefort chalice on 8/9/11

Bottled Feb 4, 2010; Batch One

Thanks(?) to MbpBugeye for sharing

Ugly, murky brown. Muddy pond water - with bubbles! One finger head crackles out quickly to a thin layer of popping bubbles. The head holds fairly well, I guess. No lace.

Smells terrible - rotten tomato paste, garbage, yeast, biscuit, spoiled banana and a cluster of other disgustingly over-ripe fruit. Cherry air freshener aromas as it warms. I don't want to taste it. And yep, it tastes terrible; nay, pathetic. Dead and withered fruit... notes, I suppose. Tea leaves and earth. Vapid implosions of cocoa dust on the finish. Thin body with way too much carbonation. Meddled, dirty finish. Dry erase marker.

This beer is very unpleasant; though a little less so as it warms. Regardless, it's atrocious.

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White Birch Dubbel from White Birch Brewing
Beer rating: 3.06 out of 5 with 62 ratings