Abbey Ale | Brewery Ommegang

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Abbey AleAbbey Ale
4,646 Ratings
Abbey AleAbbey Ale

Brewed by:
Brewery Ommegang
New York, United States

Style: Dubbel

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 8.20%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
Abbey was Ommegang's first beer and was styled after Dubbels produced by Belgian Trappist monks. A deep, rich and malty ale, Abbey uses several Belgian specialty malts and spices resulting in a very aromatic, flavorful beer.

Deep burgundy in color, topped by a dense tan head, Abbey Ale is rich on the palate but with a dry finish. Suitable for cellaring, Abbey develops wonderful caramel, fig, and currant notes with age.

Added by BeerAdvocate on 02-18-1998

Bros Score:
User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 4,646 |  Reviews: 1,774
Photo of ixodus
4.17/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Dark brown with and amber hue that has a thick beautiful off white head that dissolves very quickly into a ring around the rim.

S: Dark malts, figs, prunes, raisins, and a touch of chocolate.

T: Spot on to the nose. It has a rich dark fruit flavor with a nice roasted malt backbone, a touch of chocolate, and a slight alcohol burn at the end. As it warms the chocolate becomes more pronounced.

M: Full bodied and creamy with moderate carbonation.

D: Pretty drinkable and packs a decent buzz. One 750ml and I'm good to go.

I was nervous about this one because a lot of people told me it was awful, but I love Ommegang and had to give them the benefit of the doubt. I really want to slap myself for even being nervous. All of Ommegang's stuff is really great, and this one is no exception.

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Photo of kjyost
3.81/5  rDev -8.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

330 mL bottle purchased at the brewery in July. Cellared. Poured into a Duvel tulip (also acquired at the brewery). Undated (I think, but don't have the 4-pack anymore).

A: Pours very nice and slightly cloudy amber red with a full head that descends to a cap. Where is the lacing though?

S: Nice fruit aromas though a little muted at the start though. Figs, raisins and a strong alcoholic aroma that I find a little off-putting.

T/M: Raisins, dried apricots and apple juice with a bit of a malt presence in the background. Thick and lingering flavours. The initial sips though are too strong on the alcohol front, as it is overpowering until you are used to it. Well balanced once the esters drop off. Carbonation is low, though works well.

D: A good beer, just with too strong an initial alcoholic hit to be moved into great...

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Photo of matt20102
4.35/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Served from corked bottle into goblet at fridge temperature. Carbonation is suitably high. This pours with an excellent head that remains thick; the lacing is excellent. The flavor is of roasty malt without being very sweet or very malty. The hops are absolutely perfectly matched- the bitterness is just right and the hops never take center stage. No flavor seems to take center stage, actually, in the orchestrally harmonious beer- this is well done! This will definitely be a staple in my collection.

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Photo of chickenflea
3.98/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Beer poured a coffee color. Cloudy with a tall stiff tan-colored head. Aroma was earthy with an alcohol profile sort of like a red wine. A subtle wet dog aroma in here as well. Taste was strange. Peat, wet leaves, fruity,with rich malts, umami on the mid-taste morphing into a funky, tangy aftertaste. Mouthfeel was medium carbonation. Medium texture and body. Sharper rather than syrupy. Overall a unique brew. It is hard to pin down into a familiar style.

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Photo of mikeg67
4.04/5  rDev -2.9%
look: 5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

750 ml bottle. Pours mahogany with a thick, off-white, long lasting head. Aroma is Belgium yeast, brown sugar and fruity notes. Medium, sweet, somewhat tangy body. Belgium yeast, cherry fruit and brown sugar fills the mouth. Long, bitter-sweet finish. Wonderful dubbel.

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Photo of jrbuch
4.2/5  rDev +1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Served in a Chalice.

A: A dark murky brown with great pouring head an retention. To style.

S: Dark fruit, bready, and their house strain yeast.

T: Taste was of licorice, dark malts, and apricots. This beer did come off a little hot.

M: To style and highly carbonated. For bottle conditioning it is an art to get carbonation with this consistency.

D: A great beer that fits the style with great malt backbone and yeast prominence.

I would like to see this beer be a little less hot. Given that it is bottle conditioned, I would suggest leaving a bottle or two for just two months of aging.

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

a great american version of a belgian beer. pour is belgian carbonated. with some cloudiness to a redish brown body. nose is belgian sugar cane and candied citrus and spice. palate is that with a hit of beet sugar sweetness and pollen as well that is dissipated on the palate by the carbonation at first. then the sweet citrusy quality comes out a bit more when the carbonation subsides. a tad toasty mnalt, brown sugar, gala apple sour... very mild. bright and not particularly earthy. lean in body as a conbination of astringent acidic citrus and sweet.

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Photo of buschbeer
4.17/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

I poured into a snifter of two inches of tan head. This beer is murky brown in color. The aroma is brown/caramelized sugar with some plum/fig. The taste is some dark fruit up front and finishes with some roasted caramel malt which lingers on my tongue. It has plenty of carbonation. I really enjoy the toasted malt in the aftertaste. It keeps me wanting to take another sip.

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Photo of schoolboy
4.53/5  rDev +8.9%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I remember drinking this beer on tap and having a revelation: Americans do belgian better than Belgians. I have loved belgians (the beers, I work with and like the Belgian people just fine, but their beer I love). But at that moment, I realized that I prefer the American belgians over the real deal. This is just a person preference.

The cost is comparable, with an American value once in a while. but the American products seem to have an intangible that makes them great. Most of them are great.

This one has a perfect fruity, rich taste and is just stunning in the glass - perfect light brown head. My compliments to the brewers. I have no interest in ever going to Cooperstown for the Baseballl Hall of Fame (we have the Football one nearby and it is just ok, music ones are good though, check out our Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in a beautiful June day) but I just may go up to upstate NY to make an Ommegang pilgrimage.

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Photo of goalie33
3.95/5  rDev -5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

poured from 750ml bottle into 13oz tulip glass.
A: Very nice brick red color, slightly hazy, one finger of off white head sticks around for some time.
S: Dark fruits are the dominant smell.
T: Sweet. Mostly dark fruits but there is a significant taste of alcohol, a little more then I would like.

This is a very good example of the Belgian dubbel style, but a little high in the alcohol content. I think this beer would be better if it were in the 7% abv range instead of 8.5.

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Photo of despainmakesbeer
4.22/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

(12oz. bottle) Awesome fluffy cream-colored head pour. At least a 1/4 of head last throughout entirety of drink, very impressive. Equally awesome lacing on glass, very even. Dark Plumbish color. Small basic malty hint in aroma. Big hint of banana and candied smells. Very smooth blend of smells. Slightly fruity, also picking up hint of orange peel in aroma, brings a refreshing element to the aroma. Mild to moderate carbonation. Extremely dark fruity presence. Big middle and finish showing of alcohol. Little hint of breadiness in finish. Feel like I'm picking up some banana and some extremely faint hint of spice in flavor, but could be my nose tricking my tongue. Finishes relatively light and clean for style, not near as heavy finish presence of alcohol as similars. Very nice, warming and flavorful.

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Photo of mbusster88
4/5  rDev -3.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from 12oz bottle into pint glass. Bottle packaged 9/10/10.

A: Great dark ruby red, brownish color. Head is tan with very small bubbles, and very dense. Extremely hazy body making it nearly impossible to see through the beer.

S: Get some alcohol, dark fruits, plums, dates and some bready characters.

T/M: Right away there is some alcohol apparent on the tongue, then get the bready characters and some toffee like tastes. Dark fruit notes really give this beer some great body and weight.

D: Easy drinker with great taste, the alcohol really isn't obtrusive and does not make the beer difficult to drink.

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Photo of sommersb
4.5/5  rDev +8.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

From a 12 oz. bottle with no dating. Poured into a chalice.

Color was a dark brown/burgundy. The beer is cloudy and does not let much light get through at all. Lots of bubbles on the sides of the glass. The head was a frothy dark tan of about 2 fingers.

The aroma was very rich; dark fruits and spices, with malt sweetness and Belgian yeast aroma as well. The taste was of strong malts, alcohol, caramel, apricots and anise. No bitterness. Very enjoyable.

Mouthfeel was highly carbonated, with a rich, warm, full body. This was an outstanding beer; a pleasure to drink.

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Photo of wahhmaster
4.13/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

Poured from a 750 ml bottle into a Duvel tulip.

Appearance: Pours a dark, reddish-brown color. Has colossal, foamy head that dissipates slowly and leaves some spotty lacing.

Smell: Has a rich, sweet, malty aroma with hints of caramel, spices, and a little bit of alcohol.

Taste: It has a mild bitterness up front but that is quickly swallowed up by a rich, malty and yeasty flavor heavy on caramel and spicy notes. Also has a noticeable alcohol flavor but it's not overwhelming.

Mouthfeel: Full-bodied with an intense carbonation. Perfect.

Drinkability: A great dubbel. While it's not as good as some others (Chimay comes readily to mind), it's certainly a serious contender and would give an true Belgian dubbel a run for its money. Definitely worth a shot and definitely something I'll have again.

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Photo of DaveBlack
3.95/5  rDev -5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from 750 ml bottle into a chalice

A: Fairly opaque, reddish brown. Maybe an inch of light tan head with very good retention and also some really nice lacing.

S: Great malty aroma with a lot of raisin and other dark fruits. Yeast and a slight touch of alcohol come through after that. It seems like the more I sniff at it the more I can smell. It's a wonderfully complex aroma

T: Much yeastier than I was expecting and not nearly as sweet as the aroma led me to believe. Alcohol comes through pretty strong (stronger than I would have thought for an 8.5 % ABV). Great malt flavor with hints of caramel. Good flavor, but not as good as the aroma led me to believe.

M: Really nice mouthfeel. It has the potential to be quite heavy and sticky, but the carbonation keeps it feeling medium bodied and well balanced.

D: A very drinkable beer, and less than I'm accustomed to paying for Belgian style beers ($6.99 for the bottle at Trader Joe's). Often I go for tripels or quads, but this is a nice change: a bit lighter and less fruity. A very good beer.

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Photo of kevinjosephlee
4.77/5  rDev +14.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Bottle poured into a glass

A: Amber-orange with some haziness (perhaps because of the agitation of the yeast pellet). A tan head with moderate retention and good lacing.

S: Rich malty sweetness, with some dark fruity esters with some spicy clove phenols.

T: The spicy clove phenol is the first taste on my pallet and lingers. It balances the rich malty sweetness and leads to finish that is balanced and not dry.

M: Full-bodied with a rich mouthfeel. Good carbonation, some alcohol warmth.

Notes: A great beer. Too drinkable at 8.5 ABV.

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Photo of dcx10music
4.56/5  rDev +9.6%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

A - Dark mahogany with hints of dark red or even purple depending on the lighting. Minimal head and virtually no lacing.

S - It seems to go back and forth between a few different scents, most notably dark chocolate, molasses and raisins.

T - Really rich and satisfying. It combines all three prominent scents and mixes them together into warm, embracing goodness.

M - A slight tingle on the tongue quickly gives way to a thick, smooth, creamy consistency. In a word, decadent.

D - Relatively high ABV + overall intensity and richness = only one bottle a night for me. It's great while it goes down, though.

Notes - An instant classic. Traditional and bold at the same time. Pairs really well with food, as well. I try to keep a few of these guys around at all times.

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Photo of CaptDavyJones
4.73/5  rDev +13.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Poured from a 12 oz bottle. Dark brown, almost reddish with a nice head that stays. Aroma is predominantly fruity. Mouthfeel is exceptional, every sip reveals something different. Licorice, fruity, caramely, a slight taste of raisins perhaps...keeps the taste buds guessing and wanting more. Excellent finish, silky smooth, drinkability is excellent. The ABV is 8.5 but well hidden under layers of flavor. A beautiful dubbel, highly recommended.

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Photo of Cheesemoose
4.08/5  rDev -1.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

12oz poured into my Duvel snifter. Best before date of 05/2013.

Pours a deep orange on the verge of becoming blood red, khaki head. With a vigorous pour, the head rises like a pillow with a solid 3 fingers of head. It dissipates, leaving the lacing to slide down with each sip.

Rich fruit on the nose, with a nice spicy alcohol note. Alcohol becomes more noticeable as it warms, but is paired well with the almost raisin like fruity nature of the brew. Luscious, but the alcohol notes become a bit overpowering.

Fruity natures paired with bread, similar to raisin bread but no cinnamon. Banana's, raisins and dates. Alcohol in the background, giving off a spicy character to the finish.

Alcohol is a bit towards the foreground, but is well balanced against the rich fruit flavors. At 8.5% this is probably a solo flight.

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Photo of SolomonGrundy
3.49/5  rDev -16.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Pours black-cherry soda in color - dark reddish amber. Nice two-finger head settles down into a short blanket of creamy foam. Good carbonation. Lots of yeastiness in the nose, maybe a little sour apple or tart cherry in there too. It's a tad faint in the nose, actually. Flavor is big and bold, with plenty of malt and yeast characteristics. More well-balanced than expected with a nice hop tang to it in the middle and finish. Finish has an off bitterness I don't exactly care for, but it's not cloying or bad, just not my thing. All-in-all it's ok and decently priced at around $9.00/4-pak.

What I like most: The great color and overall apperance.

What I like least: The finish and its off bitterness.

Verdict: Decent enough and well-priced. Drink it if you see it but not worth seeking out.

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Photo of climax
4.32/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Following the slightly intuitive directions on the bottle, I poured a beautiful thick foamy head. The mass sat atop a cloudy brown caramel color. Retention was very good.

The nose was lovely. Banana, plum, fig, all make up a soft ripened fruit aroma. All in all, a great balance of sweet and spicy, with a touch of wood age, alcohol, and phenolic cleanness. As it warms and I dwell deeper some pumpkin and cinnamon tones begin to surface as well. Wonderfully complex and enjoyable.

The flavor keeps this one on the upside. The flavor is sweet up front, some caramel and chocolate flavors are prominent. The hops shine in the finish, which is quite dry. Alcohol is hidden very well.

The body has a good thickness without seeming too heavy. The carbonation is perfectly crisp yet non-obtrusive. The dry dry finish yields superbly easy drinking. Great beer.

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Photo of Skitowneric
4.01/5  rDev -3.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 3

Poured 12oz bottle into Belgian tulip glass.

Nice tan head. Dark caramel-brown color yet transparent.

Nose of dried fig and dates. Great effervescent mouth feel.

Taste of caramel, dried ripe fruit, clove, and anise.

Great representation of the style. A very deceptively easy drinker for the alcohol content.

Great American brewed Belgian style beer!

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Photo of DelMontiac
2.96/5  rDev -28.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a 12 oz bottle into a thin walled tulip. Packaged 03/16/10. Best by 03/2013. The bottle recommends served at 50F so I let it sit for a few minutes since my fridge thermometer read 42F.

Appearance: Poured an orange-tinted mahogany coloration with a massive 3+ finger head of large loosely fitted bubbles of an light sandstone hue. Head retention is minimal and completely vanished before I could get three gulps down. Looks are inviting.

Aroma: After the lofty head faded a bit, I caught a pronounced metallic smell with barely detectable banana and mildly spiced brandy notes. Alcohol on the verge of burning the nostrils as the bubbles burst. Not what I expected.

Flavor: Overbearing alcohol with slightly sweet maltiness and a bit of rum-raison.

Mouthfeel: Nothing special. Noted rapid loss of carbonation.

Drinkability: Would limit to one 12 oz bottle or share a 750 mL.

Overall: Nothing special. Kind of disappointed considering to the average BA score. Maybe a 750 mL is a better format?

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Photo of ngeunit1
4.32/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Pours a nice rich brown color with very nice amount of off-white head that retains fairly well. There is also some nice lacing left behind.

S - Rich and assertive fruit aroma, very sweet. Also a touch of sweet malts breaks through.

T - The immediate taste is the sweet fruit and maltiness that is in the smell. This is followed by a bit of mellowing malt flavor. There barely any noticeable bitterness or bite here, the flavors are well extremely well balanced.

M - Medium bodied and fairly creamy, but smooth and just the right amount of tingling carbonation.

D - A complex beer flavor wise and even mouthfeel-wise, but the flavors are well balanced and the beer stays fairly drinkable for its 8.50% APV.

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Photo of greenmonstah
3.93/5  rDev -5.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

12 oz bottle into DFH Snifter

A - Pours a dark cloudy brown with a finger of tan head. Bubbles pouring up constantly.

S - Dark fruits, belgian yeast. Very sweet.

T - There's a lot to this beer. Attacks the tongue with intense Belgian yeast and dark fruits. Leaves a lot of sweetness and abit of malt.

M - Light bodied with excellent carbonation that causes a nice bite to it on first sip.

D - Easy and enjoyable to drink, but not something I would want to session. One in a evening would be plenty.

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Abbey Ale from Brewery Ommegang
Beer rating: 4.16 out of 5 with 4,646 ratings