Ommegang (Abbey Ale) | Brewery Ommegang

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1,731 Reviews
Ommegang (Abbey Ale)Ommegang (Abbey Ale)

Brewed by:
Brewery Ommegang
New York, United States | website

Style: Dubbel

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 8.20%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by BeerAdvocate on 02-18-1998

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Reviews: 1,731 | Ratings: 4,478
Photo of Mitchster
1.4/5  rDev -66.2%
look: 1.5 | smell: 1.5 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 1.5 | overall: 1

Ruby-amber clear brew forms a HUGE tan head with sticky, tenancious lace, despite moderate to low carbonation. The huge head is actually a detriment in this's overly ridiculous...larger than Duvel (even with a careful pour). Aroma is medicinal, fusel alcohols, and flat, rubbery oxidized hops. Beer starts out with a cloying, syrupy mouthfeel and gives way to metallic notes, leads into more of the rubbery oxidized hops, and ends with a potent kick of fusel alcohols. I think this beer is awful...given the excellent ratings this beer has, I was very disappointed. This tastes like homebrew gone bad. The store I bought this from said that they sell alot of it, and this was a fresh bottle. It made my girlfriend gag..she affectionately refers to it as "Crappegang".
I am a professed Belgian advocate, and I would never buy this again. Just because it's "supposed to be a Belgian", does not a good beer make.

Update: After a few protests from people, I've decided to try this brew again, this time from a known fresh 12 oz. bottle. The head was not a problem on this pour, making me think that my last bottle was contaminated....that was until I tasted it. I still stand by my original review. I think this beer is horrible, yet I will make a few additions. 1)The aroma...I notice this time around that there is a strong tang of toffee and dark candi sugar, though I don't think it is brewed with it. 2)There is a huge pepper note on top of the potent fusels. 3)The lace is nonexistant, so I'm going to take another 0.5 points off for looks. 4)The bittering hops are rubbery AND earthy. 5)It took me 20 minutes to get about 6 oz. of this down, and I already have a mean headache. Ugh. This beer really chaps my ass. Down the sink it goes.

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Photo of palma
1.54/5  rDev -62.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 1 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 1

I don't know what everyone was thinking rating this beer in the top 50. This beer is almost disgusting. Pretty bad as soon as I opened it. Smell is fruity but full of alcohol. Smelled like propane with mashed figs. Taste was far worse than the aroma. Not really malt and hops but more like chemicals and raw alcohol. I tasted sweet-n-low and a stong artificial tangyness. There was a cherry aftertaste, but who would go through all those nasty ass flavors just to get to the aftertaste? I can't see anyone enjoying this beer. Sure, this beer is strong and will put you on your ass, but if that’s what you like, why not just drink Bud Ice instead? It tastes better than this crap! The only good thing going for this brew is its appearance - dark red body (the taste might make you guess it was Red #40) with a huge tan head. After about 4 or 5 sips I couldn't take it anymore and poured the rest of this sickening liquid down the drain.

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Photo of Erdinger2003
1.88/5  rDev -54.6%
look: 5 | smell: 2 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 1

Poured it slowly and the head almost fell over the side after a few minutes. Then fell a little back, but stayed thick and pillowy 1/4" head with a kick-butt lacing. The color is a beautiful red color that's dark ruby and just great. The smell has sour dark fruit, not much else. The taste is very sour. It's very bitter/sour with some cork's like tasting a piece of wood or sucking on some cardboard. Mouthfeel isn't horrible, not so bad. The aftertaste reminds me of the taste you get in your mouth after puking. Overall I don't think I will ever try this ever again.

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Photo of AwYeh
2.06/5  rDev -50.2%
look: 3 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

A: Pours a cloudy reddish brown, with two fingers of a foamy, resilient tan head.

S: Aroma is overwhelmingly sweet, of undistinguishable dried fruit.

T: Far too sweet for me; raisins and dates are clear, along with a bit of alcohol and some toffee. I don't get any of the subtle coffee I was expecting from reading about the beer previously.

M: After swallowing, an unpleasant sticky fills my mouth like I have just swallowed cough syrup and am tasting its coating.

D: Low due to the sweetness, don't see myself wanting to pick this one back up at all.

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Photo of deejaydan
2.2/5  rDev -46.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 1.5

I'm not sure if this is a beer, or a carbonated red wine.

Pours with the color of merlot, with a diminishing head. Smells fruity, decent lacing on the glass. Taste is like a dry red wine, I get tannins and some oak flavor out of it. Where is the sweet malt? Where are the hops? Mouthfeel is okay, though thin. I don't think I'll look for this again. Might pair well with grilled steak, but not a beer to drink on it's own.

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Photo of ReebShorts
2.2/5  rDev -46.9%
look: 1.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 2 | feel: 1.5 | overall: 1

Popped the cork on this 750 ml bottle, and glugged it into an Orval Chalice. Looks ok. Auburn, leaning to plum in color, gentle lacing at the edges. Head did fade away quicker than I expected, and left only minor islanding.

Aroma is yeasty caramel, spiced candied fruit, toffee, and detecting a slight amount of pepper.

Taste is sweet, and too much lingering sweetness on the pallet for my liking. Dry intake, which is nice, but wishing there was more hops, or pepper to balance the finish. I couln't see drinking more than One of these.

*Update* (15 minutes later) man, this beer just gets worse as I drink it, and it warms. Sickly, sticky sweet... not sure if I'll finish this one, and I never throw beer out (unless it's spoiled). Also no sign of head now, and zero lacing, just looks like a flat brown unappealing liquid.

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Photo of JWFokker
2.24/5  rDev -45.9%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 1

Served from a 750ml bottle into a stein (I know I should be using a goblet), it's a good looking beer, a nice rich brown, with a considerable (1"+) light brown, not quite tan head. Plenty of carbonation. The smell is nice, definite fruit prescence. Taste is where it all goes wrong. It's very yeasty and a bit nutty. If there was fruit in there, the yeast overwhelmed it. I couldn't even taste any malt or hops. Mouthfeel was smooth enough but I couldn't make detailed observations as the yeast taste was rather unpleasant. Maybe I got a bad bottle, or maybe this is the style of Belgian ales. I'm not familiar with Belgian style, so I couldn't say. I've got Chimay Red for the Super Bowl and hopefully it will be better than this, which I entirely disliked. Needless to say, I didn't finish the bottle.

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Photo of hooligan
2.3/5  rDev -44.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 1

Tasted/reviewed 02/06/02
The bottles that I have gotten recently have been much heavier on the sweetness, almost cloying and sickning... with heavy toffee and honey notes, leaving an overly sweet taste and a stickyness in your mouth. I am not really pleased with this beer anymore, don't know if it is my tastebuds or the beer, but it really is too sweet for me as of late...

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Photo of HardTarget
2.33/5  rDev -43.7%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2

Brown caged and corked bomber with 8.5% abv listed but no date. The bottle encouraged cellaring, which I did for at least a year and a half.
Aroma: A slightly scary soy sauce aroma and a hint of wet dog! Some alcohol is present as well. Some dark fruit showed up as it warmed.
Appearance: Dark brown with clarity shown only with a serious back light and as the glass starts to empty. Frothy tan head faded quickly to a thin collar without lace.
Flavor: Very vinous with dark fruit flavors and that soy sauce characteristic noted in the nose is pretty prominent. I noted simple sugars, some spices, a bit of horse blanket and even a touch of vinegar.
Mouthfeel: Medium light body, a bit thin actually, with a dry finish. Carbonation level is subdued.
Overall Impression: Wow, I’ve waited a long time to try this, and I’m under-whelmed. The wet dog smell (possibly a cardboard smell) is distracting and once I’m past that, I mostly get the off-soy sauce taste. I just do not like this brew and I get the feeling some of the flaws are due to aging (which the bottle TOLD me to do). It seems too much like red wine, and I don’t care for red wine typically. I’m not going to trash this beer in the numbers, but since I rate these for my own purposes (to let me know if I should buy this again) I need to give it low marks. I’m tempted to drain pour this, but I’m going to see how much I can drink. Pairing with some cheese and turkey helped some, but not a lot.
Like red wine? Give it a try. Don’t? Pass.

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Photo of popery
2.34/5  rDev -43.5%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 2

Well, this marks the first time that I've seriously disagreed with the BA community, at least since I started writing reviews. I honestly don't understand this beer or these reviews. A lot of people describe a fruity taste to this beer, but unless Vodka is now a fruit, I disagree.

The beer looks great. It's got a big head and a thick dark brown look that definitely appealed to me. I even like the packaging, just to throw in another compliment while I still can.

Once I smelled this beer, I knew something was wrong. There are certainly some interesting elements to it and I fully believe that there is a good beer lurking within, but to my nose, it smelled like strong stout with a shot of vodka dropped in, like the horror that is a boilermaker. That's overstating things, but my hopes were sky high with this one as I had read so many good reviews of Ommegang but had yet to try their beers.

The taste is really great for the first half second or so, but there isn't even enough time to swallow before the alcohol kicks in. As I said before, it's like there is a good spicy stout lingering below the surface but like a whack-a-mole, it barely pops its head before bitter alcohol hits it with a mallet. It made me think that I could have had a bad bottle or something, but I don't really know what would cause this type of reaction. If someone graciously beer mails me a possible cause, I'll try to pick up another bottle for a re-review. I could barely get through my glass but ended up drinking the entire bottle hoping for some sort of change in my perception.

The mouthfeel is fine. There's good carbonation, and the beer seems well-constructed. Unfortunately, my mouth was puckering from the bitterness, so I can't give more than a three.

Drinkability? I drank it. I can't say that I wanted to, but I did. So, that's something.

On a brief defensive note, I don't dislike high abv beers. My girlfriend shared my opinion on the flavor and her favorite beer is North Coast's 13.25% Old Stock Ale, which I like pretty well too. While I'm not the biggest fan of vodka, which was what this beer reminded me of primarily, I do drink it on occasion and definitely enjoy other hard alcohol, particularly Irish whiskey.

I feel like I drank a different beer than everyone else reviewing it. The beer that everyone else describes sounds incredible. So, feel free to ignore my review, but I can only go on my own experience.

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Photo of shabbtastic
2.34/5  rDev -43.5%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 2

A - Starts out great. Dark mahogany brown with ruby highlights. Poured semi vigorously into a chalice with a decent head and no lacing.

S - Rich dark fruit like figs and raisins dominated the nose, Yeast was very strong too, almost too strong.

T - Sour yeast was upfront and apparent on the palate. A sort of chemical taste I couldn't quite figure out. I see this is an A overall on BA, but to be honest I just didn't dig the taste. Perhaps this style of Belgians are not for me? Overrated IMO.

M - Sticky like maple syrup, that finished dry and somewhat unpleasant.

D - I don't think I'll be enjoying the rest of my 4 pack of these. This was a task just to finish. This is not OG's best; go for the 3 philosophers instead.

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Photo of NJpadreFan
2.36/5  rDev -43%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

Ommegang Abbey Ale

Appearance- dark reddish brown with a thick tan head. Very carbonated.
Smell- sweet. sugar, cherries, plums, raisins, and alcohol.
Taste- sweet with hints of burnt hops, raisins (which I hate!), prunes and rubbing alcohol.
Mouthfeel- sweet at first ending with burning alcohol.

Overall- not very pleased witht this fruity burning mess. I was able to drink but will not purchase again.

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Photo of harrymel
2.44/5  rDev -41.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

Best by: unk

A: Pours a honey brown ale with good clarity. Three fingers of peanut head falls to a quilt of the same over several minutes. Cobweb lacing.

S: Bananas, coriander, yeast. Pretty sweet and simple nose profile here. It's not really impressive. Pretty simple and sweet.

T: Really alcoholic upfront to me. Then plenty of sweet malts, raisin, copper, and hints of nutty yeast. Again, nothing special. A bit too much sweetness again, really one dimensional. Hints of cardboard (oxidation) in here as well.

M: Medium on thin for the style and relatively high carbonation in the style as well. Nice slick finish.

O: I could really take or leave this one. It's far from the best dubbel I've had, and it is (IMO) more sweet and one dimensional with the sweetness level.

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Photo of ders
2.44/5  rDev -41.1%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 4 | overall: 2

I saw the reviews on this so I wanted to try it. I'd like to try a different bottle because maybe I got a bad batch, but maybe I didn't so I'll probably not try again.


A - Pretty dark red with a nice head. Kind of looks like the head from a soda right when you pour it.

S - Smells dark. I don't smell much, but I often don't.

T - Whoa. The first couple sips were ok. Malty, a little hops. Then I started tasting cough syrup and something else that is quite unpleasant.. mostly when I breathe out. It's good as long as I don't breath out. This is gonna be tough.

M - Prettty nice. Smooth. A little carbonation.

D - I'll finish the bomber, but that's only because it's there!

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Photo of JDV
2.44/5  rDev -41.1%
look: 2 | smell: 3 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Pours a muddy brown, reddish color with a good beige head. Smell is somewhat fruity, yet rich and creamy with a hint of the clovey hefeweizen yeast smell. Taste is very unique and somewhat highly carbonated. Some spiced sweetness at 1st along with some roasted slightly bitter tastes and some flat licorice like taste in the finish. After drinking half of it, I still hardly know what to think. After it warmed a bit I like it less and am not crazy about finishing it. Definitely drinkable, but not something I particularly care for. This is obviously liked by many, but it is not my style of beer.

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Photo of Trappissed
2.48/5  rDev -40.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2

I usually don't review when there is already 1,000+ reviews, but I feel it is my duty for this case in particular. This is the worst Dubbel I have had so far. A very odd and generally nasty flavor. Sweet dark fruits and abundance of cherry cough syrup, with rubbing alcohol and a bloodish aftertaste. I don't make it a habit to know the taste of blood, but this one does remind me of it, along the same "vein" of 3 Philosophers.

Maybe its that sort of red wine characteristic, that a Dubbel should have no business involving itself with. I think Ommegang is a great brewery with a lot to offer, but this is not one of them for me. With the American Dubbels I've tried so far, maybe I should go back to Belgians for this category. This beer had no maltiness to speak of and I believe that a Dubbel should definitely have this trait.

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Photo of TYE
2.53/5  rDev -38.9%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

A - Pours a cloudy medium brown with dark orange highlights producing an off-white big bubbled foam head that dissipates fairly quickly to a light covering, leaving little to no lace.
S - Heavy aroma of brown sugar, malt, and slightly alcoholic. Also has an undertone of raisins.
T - Raisins and bitter hops. Slight brown sugar and a little overwhelming on the alcohol side. Finishes with alcohol and lingers of a strong malt flavor that coates the mouth.
M - Medium carbonation and body. Almost immediately gets foamy as it's in the mouth and swallowed. Feels soft, but filling.
D - The alcohol and malt tastes are too strong. The aroma is a little harsh and unfinished. Smells like wort. Way too filling. I didn't enjoy this one. New Belgian's version is much better, IMHO.

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Photo of BryanRex
2.54/5  rDev -38.6%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 4 | overall: 2.5

Pours a nice ruddy brown with a thick off-white head. It tastes exactly like it smells... like molasses with some dark fruit mixed in. I may have gotten a bad bottle, but in my opinion it's overpowering both in smell and taste. This is the first "world class" beer I've had that I don't want to finish. I might even need an adjunct lager to help rinse the rancid taste out of my mouth. I'm sure this is a quality ale brewed with top ingredients, but I would never consider buying this again and I don't recommend it to any of my friends.

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Photo of TheBigBoy
2.55/5  rDev -38.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2

Had in a 22oz. bottle. Admittedly Dubbles are normal not in my palate, so i cannot rank this one high. I found this to have too much winey taste and a bit two thick for drinking more than one. If you do like a deep, rich beer, you may like this one, give it a shot in a bottle.

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Photo of vegasennui
2.55/5  rDev -38.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

This beer is totally disappointing. Its not that its a bad beer, but aroma and flavor are just largely not present. Its neutral the way that Guinness is neutral to an experienced drinker. If you are not a fan of the general style then its a strong flavor but i just expect more character then this from an abbey ale. There is a slight after taste of pennies, which is annoying but even that is so faint its nearly not there. Its very drinkable, because its neutral, but not actually good. Have it with food instead of diet soda.

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Photo of shbobdb
2.56/5  rDev -38.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 2 | feel: 4 | overall: 2

This wasn't a bad brew . . . but it wasn't good either. I really liked Hennepin from this brewery, and I enjoyed several other Belgian Strong Dark Ales, so I thought this guy might be a winner, but it wasn't. The caramel notes were just overpowering in this brew. It was really just cloyingly sweet, and not like a bock, but sweet like candy. Really, just, too sweet.
I don't know what it is, but when I naively say, "I don't like Belgian beers", I mean, I don't like this particular caramel flavour. It just dominates some belgian style beers and when it is there, I am just not going to enjoy the brew. It's not in all dark ales, so I'm not sure what it is. Candi sugar maybe? That'd be my guess. Nasty stuff that.

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Photo of EStreet20
2.58/5  rDev -37.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 2

750 ml bottle poured into a Chimay chalice. Bottles in Belgium.

A - A nice look for a Belgian dark. Deep brown with a little reddish tint. A nice bubbly off white head sits atop and stays nicely.

S - Bit time yeastiness is the initial aroma. The yeast mixes nicely with some candy sugar and fruit smells. A hint of a peppery spice is present as well.

T - More than anything up front I taste the spiciness. After that the fruity flavor comes in a little bit. Other than that there's just a big metallic taste and some band aid/antiseptic flavor. I'm wondering if I got a bad bottle, but this taste does not impress me in the least.

M - Nice carbonation, however it's hard to get a good feel for this one because I really do not enjoy the taste.

D - honestly I;m finding this one undirnkable, a big disappointment after hearing so many good things.

Notes: Hoping this is a bad bottle. Will try/review again.

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Photo of jeffjfindley
2.61/5  rDev -37%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2

This beer presented itself well enough, looking much like one would expect a dubbel to, dark dirty red with a two finger head on the pour. Oddly, the head wasn't very dense at all, more like dish soap.

The smell was decent, but unremakable. Candy sugar, plums, etc. The taste was similarly unimpressive, and had an unbelievably metallic aftertaste. If I had to describe this beer in one sentence, I would say that it's like Brussels by way of Burton-on-Trent. I felt like I was sucking on a penny, and poured the damn thing out after drinking about a fourth of it.

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Photo of Jwaks
2.66/5  rDev -35.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2

Serving: 750ml bottle

A dull, hazy maroon brown beer unleashes a storm of carbonation racing up to feed a thick, cloud-like parchment twinged head, initially measuring three fingers thick, it subsides receding into a neat and impressive finger thick cap. Huge dollops of lacing are left clinging to the inside of the glass, this beer has all signs of a very sweet-sugary flavor.

Earthy spices, dark brown sugar, caramel, molasses, alcohol soaked dark fruit, much like sweet rum raisins, and stodgy dark bread aromas with hints of citrus zest must be teased out of this beer's bouquet. Not many sour or bitter scents are present to balance the sweet aromas.

Dark honey bread, crystalline brown sugar, caramel earthy malt, molasses, and a bit of bitter alcohol infused candied fresh figs glide over the palate finishing a slight dry with a touch alcohol and more molasses. Hints of buttery phenols and citrus bitters are layered over a mountain of cloying crystalline sweetness, hardly enough to balance this velvety smooth brew. Austere bitter and tannic flavors develop as this brew is exposed to the air and warms a bit, a welcome change perhaps attributed to yeast sediment, though not a great addition to this beer's flavor.

Medium to full bodied, this beer coats the palate well leaving a film similar to very sweet fruit soda, very cloying, distracting and even drying. About three quarters through the bottle it gets a bit difficult to keep going and finish the deal. A notable effort is required to drink this brew beyond the first glass, odd off flavors combined with the cloying sweetness keep me from going back to the glass.

A sea of sweetness drown more intruiging islands of delicious earthy malt, dark fruit, butter and molasses; an unfortunate imbalance because this beer has so much to offer.

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Photo of mullenite
2.7/5  rDev -34.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 2 | feel: 4 | overall: 1.5

12oz bottle.

Poured a deep brown with reddish tints when held to light, nearly opaque. Two finger tan head with orange highlights.

Smelled very strongly of cherries, I couldn't pick up much more than that. There were other scents there but cherries were the only one readily identifiable to me.

Tasted very similar to it's smell. Complex with an overpowering cherry flavor to it at the tip, a little bit of raisin showed itself in the middle, finishes with a clean alcohol taste.

Mouthfeel was decent, not too heavy but not too light. Carbonation was spot on for my tastes.

This was not a beer for me, I have had dubbel's before and enjoyed them but this one had too much going on for my tastes. The cherry flavor was too strong and reminded me of children's cough syrup. I had to force myself to finish the glass because of this and while I may give it another shot to be fair, I don't see myself drinking much more of this.

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Ommegang (Abbey Ale) from Brewery Ommegang
4.14 out of 5 based on 4,478 ratings.
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