Abbey Ale | Brewery Ommegang

Your Rating: None
Want it   Got it 
Abbey AleAbbey Ale
4,638 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
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Alström Bros
Ratings: 4,638 |  Reviews: 1,772
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.

 929 characters

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.

 477 characters

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.

 808 characters

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.

 616 characters

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.

 572 characters

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.

 804 characters

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.

 1,061 characters

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.

 543 characters

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.

 771 characters

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.

 445 characters

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.

 826 characters

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.

 796 characters

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.

 860 characters

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!

 354 characters

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?

 1,011 characters

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.

 713 characters

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.

 507 characters

Photo of Blanco
2.98/5  rDev -28.4%
look: 5 | smell: 2 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

very dark amber color with a large off-white head that remains thick throughout. Lacing is particularly strong. Very strongly carbonated. The smell is very weak. Smells like pennies with a malty undertone. taste is also metallic with some dark fruit and dark, but not roasted malt. mouthfeel is on the thicker side and creamy from the thick head. It's drinkable, but unremarkable. For a dubbel, I guess it's OK, but I was expecting more. Seems like a "safe" beer.

 463 characters

Photo of scoobybrew
4.03/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - hazy (probably from bottle conditioning) deep amber color with a thick, well-retained head

S - fruity yeast esters with hints of dark fruit; slightly sweet malt with some toastiness; no hop detected

T - sweet malt up front with yeasty esters throughout, alcohol is also noticeable in flavor; slight alcohol astringency lingers a little after the finish with a touch of roasted malts perceived

M - medium body with high carbonation

D - This fits the dubbel style quite nicely. I don't think it's perhaps the best example I've had, but it is pretty tasty and quaffable.

 575 characters

Photo of GRG1313
3.53/5  rDev -15.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Pours a very dark cooper with red tints and a thick, firm and lasting head.

Nose is all assertive cooked pears and stone fruit; very Belgian nose and very pleasant.

Mouthfeel is medium creamy and big and well balanced, although from the small bottle that's this sample it is somewhat highly carbonated, lessened with a few good swirls.

Flavors are assertive, bold and big creamed sweet coffee, carmel and toffee and stone fruit with a nice coffee/citrus skin bitter finish.

Well made and drinkable although a bit of the higher alcohol comes through in nose and flavor profile.

 584 characters

Photo of Boto
4.42/5  rDev +6.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

750ml bottle: This one pours a caramel/amber color. There was a good bit of a fluffy tan head on it that doesn't completely go away. It has a very nice nose. Dark fruits and caramel/toffee are up front. Some yeastiness and breadiness in there too. The taste is quite good. There is almost no sweetness, in fact it finishes a bit dry. Toffee notes, some of the dark fruits and some chocolate. A nice beverage!

 408 characters

Photo of TMoney2591
4.22/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Served in a Chimay goblet.

Another second chance at another Ommegang favorite. It pours a hazy auburn topped by a half-finger of slightly off-white foam. The nose comprises rye bread, figs, raisins, red grapes, cloves, cinnamon, nutmeg, and prunes. The taste follows very closely, with the addition of sourdough, pepper, banana, and a scraping of tangerine. The body is a hefty medium, with a moderate carbonation and a fizzily thick feel. Overall, a very nice dubbel, one that I'll be sure to keep revisiting in the future. It's a bit on the fizzy side, but it doesn't overdo this flaw and makes up fer it with a great taste and a hefty body.

 644 characters

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

This is a good beer, expecially considering that it is made in NY and not imported from Belgium!

Nice dark brown with a lacy 2 finger head.

Smell was impressive with lots of things going on here.... Malt, yeast, cherry, chocolate

Taste was good, well balanced and I am going to have to buy this one again. No Alcohol after byte.

Lots of carbination with a good feel to it.

A very drinkable beer, that is true to the style. About time an american brwery got the Belgian style right.

 488 characters

Photo of yobeerman
4.23/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This classic Belgian pours a rich dark mahogony and has a creamy tan 2 finger head. It's aroma is filled with dark fruits - figs and raisins. The taste is terrific with dark fruits and caramel malt - very impressive. This is a medium to full bodied, very drinkable beer with a creamy mouthfeel and little carbonation. Give it a try.

 332 characters

Photo of KDeLibero
3.92/5  rDev -5.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

This beer comes to us from Brewery Ommegang in Cooperstown, New York, and it is a great example of a classic Belgian Dubbel. The Belgian Dubbel is a style of beer that originated in the Trappist Abbey of Westmalle in 1865. Since then, the style has developed into a strong brown ale that has become popular throughout Belgium and now in the United States as well. This was Brewery Ommegang's first brew, and they are now one of the leading Belgian style breweries in this country.

Ommegang Abbey pours a rich, dark mahogany. The aroma is toasty, malty, and reminiscent of Mexican Coca-Cola. These qualities are apparent in the taste as well, with more caramel, spice, chocolate, and dark fruit, especially figs. The beer is a bit sweet but this is balanced and mellowed by lively carbonation. This is an impressive brew that is right up there with the best of Belgium! It is full-bodied, yet finishes dry and very drinkable. Grab a few for the cold nights ahead.

There are so many different dishes that would be great with Ommegang Abbey. Duck stew with mashed potatoes is a perfect match. Game meats, roast suckling pig, lamb chops, venison sausage, and almost any dessert (especially those with chocolate) would all be excellent pairings too. As for cheese, try it with something nutty such as Brie de Meaux, Hoch Ybrig, or Piave Vecchio. Enjoy!

 1,350 characters

Abbey Ale from Brewery Ommegang
Beer rating: 4.16 out of 5 with 4,638 ratings