Westmalle Trappist Dubbel | Brouwerij Westmalle

BA SCORE
93
outstanding
1,203 Reviews
Westmalle Trappist DubbelWestmalle Trappist Dubbel
BEER INFO

Brewed by:
Brouwerij Westmalle
Belgium
trappistwestmalle.be

Style: Dubbel

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 7.00%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by BeerAdvocate on 11-25-2000

BEER STATS
Reviews:
1,203
Ratings:
2,668
Avg:
4.15
pDev:
10.6%
 
 
Wants:
213
Gots:
485
For Trade:
1
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User Reviews
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Reviews: 1,203 | Ratings: 2,668
Photo of Wasu
4.38/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

L dark brown with thick head, quickly gone
S caramel, prune, spicy, alcohol is hidden well from smelling
T sweet after taste, warming, very balance
Mouthfeel creamy and smooth
Overall love it. Will be back for more

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Photo of Cburnette23
4.61/5  rDev +11.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

Drank from a Newcastle 'Werewolf' Tulip - which, by the way, these tear-drop shaped tulip glasses I firmly believe are the ab-so-LUTE best way to drink Belgian and Trappist beers, especially the fruit-noted subtle quads and the lighter-bodied and very subtle dubbels. they bring everything down to a singular point, meaning all those beautiful bright flavors and scents rise up brilliantly and perfectly, via the trademark 'Belgian' bright-active, cheerful, and classy (as well as celebratory) carbonation to meet it's beholder in a manner that can not come close to equal when repeated from some other random glassware.

Seeing as I decided upon this over the higher-rated tripel offered by the same monastary-brewers (and by the way - I LOVE my tripels...) and also a smokier, coffee/chocolate Belgian dark from Kasteel ('Winter') I have high hopes for this beauty. I couldn't decide against the more pronounced prunes and fig accents I had heard reported, as it will push an otherwise great beer to the realm of absolute LEGEND - 'hall of fame' by my own personal experience. That intangible, unforgettable combination of just the right body, just the right spritzy dance upon the tongue of fig, prune and subtle hues of deep flavor, and just the right ABV to slam the door on a unique and incomparable experience. That my friends is what it's all about, and that's why I went with this one over the others. It's that unforgettable 'WOW!!!' that has many of us 'chasing' our great lust, bottle-by-bottle for the same original spark that can't be compared to any other. After you have it, you never forget, and you're infected with a passion to have it again and again and again....

Now for the faithful verdict. Will it hold its own with another absolute favorite of mine - the Trappiste Rochfort 10 Belgian Quad Ale? Or will it fall short by way of some unforeseen imbalance in... 'THE FORCE'? Well - strap into the Millennium Falcon, because we're about to kick this baby into hyper-drive, Chewy.

So, how about the Westmalle Dubbel? Does it add up, to the standard of the famed Belgian Trappist ales, in my
opinion the finest beers anywhere in the world (that I am aware of, at least, although I know there are
many more than I could ever comprehend). The answer to that is of course relative and subjective. Let me just begin by saying that the only negative I can find with a beer like this, is that there just isn't enough. No, it's not that one serving won't satisfy - it will most certainly accomplish that. It's just that you want two more of these puppies to stash for later
and revisit the way you would a dear old friend, because parting is just such sweet sorrow.

Anyway, first the pour. A lovely amber/copper color greets you, and as you sniff the head the fruit scents rise to meet you with depth and mystery. The head is a sandy tan color, perhaps one of the finest heads I have seen (easily, in fact) a full three fingers and tight, beautiful bubbles. The head remains for awhile before slightly receding to half it's size and
a moderate lacing on the glass. The color is nothing amazing, perhaps a dark, polished mahogany color toward the bottom and much darker (nearly black, very dark) in the center toward the body of the glass.

The taste is pleasant and subtle, not overwhelming. This I find good, as it gives you SPACE to relax and ENJOY
the drink, rather than be flooded with a 'niche' flavor as with so many other beers, whether they be hoppy, coffee,
chocolate or so on. This is a balanced beer, with plenty to offer, but enjoyable at the leisure of the drinker. The fruit is definitely there and the thing you notice right away. It has a light, citrus and yeast impression that I get from it, a rather light texture and body to the beer.

Much bright figgy goodness happening on the palette, with bright prunes certainly making an appearance, a bit of bitter dryness to the drink as well that seems to be characteristic of this one. Hints of raisin and PRONOUNCED fig with a yeast backdrop. Dry, balanced, well-carbonated, and a nice ABV. These are the high points of this one. Not outstanding flavor really, but nothing not to like. Lots of subtlety and simplicity to keep things interesting. All in all I'd say another winner, and a fantastic example of a dubbel. Drink this one slowly and sip, that's for sure. The dryness of this one brings to bear ONE word if you expect to enjoy this - sophistication. This is all about the essence. It actually brings a serenity and contemplative peace if enjoyed correctly.

That's because it's so dry and unimposing, yet so incredibly balanced and subtly tart (with definite fig) at the same time. Great if you like to sketch or paint or enjoy nature from your deck I suppose. Maybe wouldn't do as well at a social event out on the town or during a sporting event. Unless it's golf or something, perhaps.

 4,885 characters

Photo of RustythePelican
4.03/5  rDev -2.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured into a chalice with a dark brown, almost maroon, hue with a tight but small head. I made the mistake of cooling this one too much - it is definitely under the 45-50 degree recommended serving temperature, so I warmed it by holding the glass for a while. The smell is sweet, but not "sugary", if that makes any sense. The smell is not overwhelming, quite subtle, actually, with hints of ripe figs and dates.

This tastes, as expected, like a dubbel, with a slightly smokey or peaty finish that betrays its sweet scent. The 7% ABV remains well hidden, with the exception of a slight alcohol bite on the finish as it warms up. It's solid, yet doesn't quite measure up to my favorite dubbel, St. Bernardous Pater 6.

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Photo of Bitzy
4.67/5  rDev +12.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Got this beer in its 11.2 ounce bottle at Gaslight Brewery and Restaurant. I had always wanted to try the westmalle trappist beers and it was a no brainer to finally try it last night. From the first sip, I was drawn by its complexities.
A- Nice brownish red color with limited head. Poured into a westmalle glass (this bar has the right glass for every beer they serve)

S- some caramel notes mixed in with nice dried fruits such as cherries and plum and a good yeast backing.

T- the smell and more. The roastyness surrounded the tantalizing fruit esters. At times their was hints of alcohol and yeast, but they did not get in the way of how great this beer is.

M- Very drinkable. This one is worth taking slow medium size sips because you'll want to enjoy it for as long as possible.

D- Awesome! Could have a couple in a sitting.

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Photo of loobear
4.47/5  rDev +7.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Poured into a pint glass.

A - Light carmel colored head with medium retention. Mahogany body that is completely opaque.

S - Sweet, intense dark fruits, cherries and ripe banana. Smells amazing.

T - Not nearly as intense in both taste and alcohol as the Tripel, but still really complex and enjoyable.

M - Perfect balance. Nothing is overpowering or underwhelming. Lots of carbonation, alcohol and flavor. Very satisfying.

O - I will seek this beer out again in the future. Wont find it in my neck of the woods, unfortunately.

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Photo of LordofthePings
4.7/5  rDev +13.3%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.75

Poured into a tulip glass.

A: Dark red/amber with a white head.
S: Belgian
T: One of the best examples of the style. Dried fruit, sweet, belgian esters. A perfect blend into one clean smooth beer.
M: High carbonation but easy to drink.
O: I can't believe I put off trying this beer for years based on a previous disappointment by the same dubbel style. A new 'go-to' for me when I'm craving a belgian. Dark sweet and full of esters and dried fruit. Will buy this one again and again.

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Photo of jds1469
4.07/5  rDev -1.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Dark back color with a white head. Lacing is strong.

S - Sweet and hoppy. What could be better?

T - not too much flavor here, just light booze. What is there is good, there just isn't too much flavor.

M - Exactly what you would expect when you start to dink this beer. Rich feel, smooth and stays with you for a while.

D - I could drink this all night long. Very good beer here.

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Photo of Acho
3.57/5  rDev -14%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 4

Purchased a bottle for roughly 2€.

Nice murky brown colour (a bit too murky in my opinion) topped with a beautiful tan head that stays around for awhile.

A quite nice smell and somehow complex getting some of the yeast and a bit fruit.
The taste is, together with the drinkability, what makes this beer a difficult one to make one's tatse buds to it. Way too carbonated even for a Belgian brew, I shall give it a try leaving it at least a couple of months in the cellar; that's why it is that high my overall grade.

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Photo of Twincrasher
4.38/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A: Mahogany. Decent lace and leaves nice foam head.

Smell: Caramel and plum/raisin. Hints of spice

Taste: Very nice profile. Typical for Trappist style dubbel.

Mouthfeel: Good overall balance.

Overall: Very nice Friday night dinner beer. Very good rating.

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Photo of BrewMan82
3.92/5  rDev -5.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours dark amber/orange. Nice 3 finger off-white head. Aroma is grapey and alcohol, without much detectable malt or hop character. This one is very highly carbonated - went crazy in my mouth - very light and fizzy on the tongue. Tasted fruity and sugary, with an alcohol tinge. Finished smooth and easy - took me more than a few minutes to drink this to try and unravel the flavors.

*this is one of my first belgian brews - excuse my lack of experience in this area.

 469 characters

Photo of astrasday
4/5  rDev -3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a 11.2 oz bottle into a tulip. Two finger, off white head with excellent retention. A dark, hazy mahogany. Beautiful.

Smell. Dark fruits, raisins, apricots, molasses and yeast. A lovely bouquet for sure.

Taste. Hearty flavor. Raisin bread, malty molasses with a light, refreshing finish of fruity apricots and yeast. A kiss of booze warms up the whole flavor and ties it all together nicely.

This is truly a rich brew. Medium-bodied with some nice, not overbearing carbonation along with the bready flavor gives it a hearty feel.

Drinkable. One that I could easily session during a cold winter night like tonight. Warming, hearty, tasty. A winner.

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Photo of Phillyphilms
4.12/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A- Very dark in color, amber with hues of maroon. Pours with a luscious strong head. Bubbles continue to elevate while you drink.

S- Average in smell, a lot less of the fruits and sugars yu get from other Belgium beers.

T- Outstanding. Nice bitter bite up front and very malty. YEast less defined than other Belgiums but that leaves way for the dark fruit and malt to seep in. Very enjoyable.

M- Dry but sticks around for a moment.

D- Very much so. Sadly I only had one bottle or I would have had a second right behind it.

All in all, very well crafted dubbel, and one of my favorites in the style. Looking forward to my next one.

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Photo of dgv0
4.53/5  rDev +9.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

P: 33cL brown bottle "TRAPPISTENBIER" stamped around the neck.

A: Pours a dark brown with a thick and creamy tan-colored head. Visible bits of black yeast when held up to light.

S: Peppery, slight caramel notes.

T: Chocolate, malty, and fruity. A dry, alcoholic bit after the first impression, but nonetheless, a great experience for the tongue. Warming.

M: Coarse, almost gritty from the yeast. Medium carbonation and relatively thick body.

D: 100% drinkable, and for me, that's an interesting concept for a Belgian Ale. If these didn't cost so much here in FL, I'd consider buying this every week.

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Photo of chefscott79
4.42/5  rDev +6.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Wow...my new favorite dubbel

appearance:nice dark color not too much brussels lace..and It did seem to improve with warming in the glass....losing some of the carbonation

smell:lots of dark stone fruit smells and not allot of estery smells

taste:wow great dark malt flavors with notes of cherry? and other dark stone fruits

mouthfeel...a bit too much carbonation at first then it mellowed and got silky as hell

drinkablity:I could drink this all day

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Photo of travloh
3.78/5  rDev -8.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

I have really wanted to try a trappist ale for a long time. I really have not tasted many, or maybe any belgians. I hope this is nice place to start.

Popped the top and a quick temp reading shows 49 degrees. Pour into a chalice reveals a dark, dark brew. Hold it up to the light and it is dark, murky brown. Very creamy, robust head that has the tiniest of bubbles. Looks good.

Smell is of spritzy fruit. Almost pungent aroma. Weak Banana bread. Slight alcohol. I think slight cherry?

Taste reveals something very foreign. So this is Belgian ale? Not too bad but very very different. Malt, oak, bitter fruits. Something very earthy about it. Unleavened, or maybe even stale bread. Slight bitterness on the back side. The first drink is very different from the next several. Makes my tongue slightly numb. I can certainly taste yeast. I said I have had very few Belgians but this shares a quality with the ones I have had. I think it is the yeast. Interesting.

I like this stuff and from what I have read it is a good example of the style. I would certainly drink another.

 1,079 characters

Photo of ellman
4.4/5  rDev +6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

The Pour: Pours a deep brown with a red huewith a full tan head.

The Smell: Fruity and alcohol was my first indication, followed by nutts and rasins

The Taste: the the wonderful aromas came through in the taste. and they hide the alcohol well.

The Mouthfeel: A well body beer

I could drink a few of these maybe not in one setting thou.

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Photo of liquidnoise
4.76/5  rDev +14.7%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

This is the first trappist beer I've tried. Had it today.

Poured out dark, with an unusual brown head. I could see the yeast swimming around at the bottom of my glass as I chose not to filter it.

The smell was the only thing less than magnificant. It didn't really have much of a smell. But the faint smell was fruity and very appealing.

It tasted like fruit and maybe some chocolate thrown in the mix. Nothing low quality about this one.

The mouthfeel wasn't too watery, wasn't too heavy. It was just perfect.

This is definately a premium beer for the connoisseur, appropriate to be enjoyed with a gourmet meal or on a special occasion.

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Photo of browner
4.32/5  rDev +4.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A great Dubbel with the classic aroma of caramel, malts and beautiful yeast overtones. Classic Belgian pour and color. Taste lingers a bit but leaves you wanting more. Hard to find a better value in a Dubbel A real winner which is readily available in our area. Life is good.

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Photo of kcinlober
4.27/5  rDev +2.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

appearance: dark ruby color but no opacity. huge, brown head with extensive lacing

aroma: citrus, fruit, bready and a hint of yeast

mouthfeel: slightly sour, a little bitter, easy to drink. again with a little citrus but as opposed to the aroma, this is definitely stronger on the yeast end

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Photo of LVituri
4.68/5  rDev +12.8%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

Esta é uma das grandes representantes do estilo dubbel, e mais um respeitado rótulo trapista. Eu só conheci dois rótulo Westmalle, mas os dois mostraram representar cervejas de qualidade suprema, que com que certeza posicionam a cervejaria como um dos grandes nomes do mundo.

 279 characters

Photo of Ecliptica
4.65/5  rDev +12%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured from an 11.2 oz. bottle into a pint glass. The beer poured a nice opaque amber color with a beautiful, creamy head that kept its lacing. I must have poured this a lot better than some of my fellow reviewers, because I didn't have the full head that everyone is talking about, but rather an absolutely perfect quarter inch head or so.

The smell is rather difficult to describe, but it is nonetheless pleasant. I'm not a wine expert, but it literally smelled like generic wine. I could discern some fig, wild berries, toffee, malt, chocolate, and of course, alcohol and I'm sure there is plenty of other fruit in it. The smell is tremendous and is only a sign of more good things to come.

The initial taste wasn't nearly as good as it was once it warmed. I've noted before that my refrigerator is quite cold (due to my roommates), but the flavors became quite vibrant and stately once the brew reached closer to room temperature. Absolutely delicious. The blend of fruit, spices, alcohol, and tannin made it almost taste like it smelled - like wine(!)

Mouthfeel was perhaps the weakest (if there is a weakest) part of this brew. I felt as though there was a bit too much carbonation that kept the beer from reaching its true potential until it warmed up. Once warm, however, the brew went down entirely too smooth for a beer with 7% abv.

And that leads to drinkability. Again, for a 7% abv beer, this is almost entirely too drinkable. I'm a bit upset I only bought the single because I can't wait to have another one and to let my friends try this as well. The monks are certainly doing something right, one of the better beers I've had in a long time.

 1,661 characters

Photo of Marc_V
4.35/5  rDev +4.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Bottle from Belgianbeershop.com. Head: beige, thick, stable, nice lacing. Color: dark red brown, very beautiful. Aroma: filled with roasted malts, chocolate, coffee, caramel. The taste is very well balanced with a fantastic full mouthfeel. Notes of caramel and banana. Very long finish. This is one of the best trappist ales, almost as good as the Westmalle tripel.

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Photo of Henrich
4.59/5  rDev +10.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Appearance: Rich brown to burnt orange, especially when held to the light. 2 inches of fluffy, tab foam, which lingers, eventually settling, yet never disappearing. Looks great in the chalice.
Smell: Sweet! Like effervescent brown sugar and plums. Absolutely fantastic!
Taste: Starts quite similar to the smell, then yields to a more complex malty flavor, which ends with a slight hoppy, yet delicious bitterness. This blew me away.
Mouth-Feel: Thick, almost syrupy. This lingers on the tongue for quite some time. It feels heavy.
Overall: This is in my top 10. This is the third time I've had this and it has been incredible each time. Obviously it is pricy, but then again it is not something I'd drink just any day.

 719 characters

Photo of jnelson54
4.7/5  rDev +13.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

The prune juice brown color with fine belgian lace surrounding a tall glass. Nose is slightly malty with hints of fruits and dark sugar. A range of malt flavor from sweet to slightly sour that gives way to a balanced a spicy hop finish. Truly well crafted. Great for those mild fall days.

 288 characters

Photo of kreeper
4.23/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This beer poored with a good frothy headand had some nice sweet aromas. Flavors of banana and sweet malt were good and made this beer enjoyable. Had some yeast hints on the body of this beer which was nice and rich. This beer overall was a good dubbel and would drink it again.

Serving type: bottle

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Westmalle Trappist Dubbel from Brouwerij Westmalle
4.15 out of 5 based on 2,668 ratings.
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