Petrus Dubbel Bruin Ale | De Brabandere

160 Reviews
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Petrus Dubbel Bruin AlePetrus Dubbel Bruin Ale

Brewed by:
De Brabandere

Style: Dubbel

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 6.50%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by paterlodie on 10-05-2005

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Reviews: 160 | Ratings: 311
Photo of Mitchster
1.75/5  rDev -51.4%
look: 2 | smell: 2 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 1.5

$21 for a mixed 6/er gift pack at Merchants in Dearborn. Pours out to a cloudy dark mahogany, forming a small khaki head with poor retention and minimal lacing. Carbonation is moderate. The first thing I notice about this beer is the strong caramelized aroma. It smells like caramelized sugar and burnt marshmallows. There is no clove or bananas like I would expect for a dubble. There is some faint distant grassy hops and otherwise, it's hard to distinguish any other aromas. Mouthfeel is slightly cloying with an unpleasant sweet aftertaste and vinous quality. The taste begins with a slight sourness akin to rotting fruit (cherries), followed by abundant caramelized sugar and pronounced odd saccharin sweetness. A little bit of leather in the finish and lingering aftertaste of saccharin. Cleanly fermented. Alcohol is mild in the finish.

What a disgusting beer this is. It's nowhere close to being a dubbel. Way too sweet and obviously flavored with saccharin. Yeast choice is all wrong. A mistake. Stay away. Blech, down the drain this goes.

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Photo of Ant777uk
2.01/5  rDev -44.2%
look: 1.5 | smell: 1.75 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 1 | overall: 2

Always happy to try a new beer from Belgium.

According to the bottle this is "The Key to Heaven". The old man on the bottle looks pretty happy so I hope I will be as happy as him soon.

Look, not the best as it seems a bit too thin, and not much head.

Aroma is malty, not very complex.

Feel is very thin, watery.

Taste is ok though quite simple. A little too fizzy, no depth.

Am I as happy as the man on the bottle..? In a word, no. Def a bit dissapointed, especially as it's from Belgium.

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Photo of axeman9182
2.08/5  rDev -42.2%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.5

11.2oz bottle, a souvenir from working Belgian Beer Fest, poured into my Brooklyn Brewery tulip.

Petrus Dubbel Bruin Ale pours a deep, murky mahogany, with some red highlights shining through. There's about a finger and a half of khaki colored head. Head retention and lacing are both barely there... this is one of the less impressive Belgians I've seen. The nose has a little bit of clove, and even less fruit. It's dominated by a rummy, dark sugar sweetness. The flavor brings more of the same, but that sweetness is even a bit more overbearing. There's also a bit of (out of place) bitterness present, and to be honest this beer reminds me more of a cola than a beer. The body is just a touch too full, and the carbonation a little bit dull, but they're both pretty close. I may have to go pick up some Ommegang Abbey Ale or Chimay Rouge soon, because between this and (a soon to be reviewed) St. Vincent's Dubbel, I've had a mini run of the worst dubbels I've ever had.

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Photo of Zorro
2.09/5  rDev -41.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 1.5

A clear reddish brown colored beer with a small tan colored head.

The smell is sweetish and malty with a faint vinegar aroma. Little bit of brown sugar in this and a little bit of flowers. This beer style is not supposed to have any vinegar aroma.

The taste starts out sweet and sour like the other sour beers from this brewer that seems to be mainly a Flanders Red brewer. This tastes like a Flanders Red.

Mouthfeel is OK.

Not real drinkable in my opinion. If you want a Dubbel there are about 1000 better ones out there.

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Photo of BeerDonkey
2.13/5  rDev -40.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 1 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 1.5

Another beer from the Petrus Holiday 6-pack and another Petrus beer I've poured down the drain after 2 sips.

Pours a wonderful, dark mahogany brown and a frothy off-white head. Looks really good.

Aroma: A very sweet, honey, malt aroma. Glad it's not the apple vinegar aroma I’ve experience in 2 of the other Petrus beers.

Taste: Sweet, so sweet that it completely overpowers all flavors. Roasted malt flavours with little bitterness. All sugar.

Mouthfeel: really hard to recover from the sweetness, but it was quite drinkable if you enjoy pouring sugar in your beer

I don’t have any personal vendetta against Petrus, I’ve just had some of the worst beers I’ve ever tried and I’ve been drinking “good” beer for 15 years.

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Photo of gordavidson
2.29/5  rDev -36.4%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2

A- A very deep, ruddy brown with a bit of ruby hues coming through on the edges. The light brown head is nice and creamy with decent retention. A few floaters are noticeable.

S- Very sour and tart smelling with raisins, cinnamon, brown sugar, and vinegar coming to mind. A little funky smelling for my tastes.

T- Slightly sour with some raisin, brown sugar, and vinegar flavors. Why is this sour? Everything seems in check except for the sourness.

M- The carbonation is nice, but again, the sourness makes this oddly tart.

D- With so many other, more enjoyable beers in the Dubbel style, this is just not in the cards. Too sour for its own good. I tried to enjoy it for what it is, but this just isn't working.

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Photo of Jeffo
2.38/5  rDev -33.9%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Got this at Bert's Bierhuis in Utrecht

Into a chalice

APPEARANCE: Pours a small 1 finger medium looking tan head with good retention. Deep maroon red in color, clear, with medium carbonation evident. Head fades to a thin film and the carbonation decorates the top. A decent cap remains but leaves no lacing down the sides.

SMELL: Dark fruits, raisins and prunes, as well as some caramel malt. Some spiciness, such as coriander, and hints of spicy yeast as well. A bit of unpleasant tart or sourness holds it back.

TASTE: Dark fruits, much like the nose, with some sweet caramel malt and candy sugar. Spiciness from the yeast and a good deal of sourness as well, like sour grapes. Strong but shor sweet-sour aftertaste at the finish. A little too sour really.

PALATE: Medium body and higher end carbonation. Somewhat creamy on the palate, goes down smooth and finishes somewhat mouth coating. Decent here.

OVERALL: A definite let-down. It's too sour and tart for my liking, and doesn't really mesh well with others in the style. The label says it's "The Key to Heaven," but for me it was a little off-putting. I didn't even feel like finishing this one.

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Photo of chickenm
2.45/5  rDev -31.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 1.5

330mL bottle poured into a chalice. Brown color with an average tan head. Aroma of dark fruits, brown sugar, cloves, and some sourness. This has a sweet & sour flavor with caramel, raisins, lots of sugar, and a sour finish. This beer seems like a cross between a Dubbel and a Flemish Ale. Body was a bit on the thin side. Not very drinkable, I found the taste of this unappealing.

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Photo of pwoods
2.49/5  rDev -30.8%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

11.2oz. brown bottle, purchased at Party Source, poured into a Chalice. 38699

A: Pours a very dark brown, completely opaque. Maybe a finger worth of loose, yet creamy tinted head. Dies to a thick creamy skim within a minute or two. Decent lacing throughout.

S: Sweet caramel malts with hints of dark fruit, wood, smoke, and an odd alcohol. Is that sour? Maybe vinegar?

T/M: Sweet malts and dark fruit. More of the wood and smoke notes but much fainter. The alcohol is very wierd... almost makes it taste flat...though the carbonation is a touch high. It is sour. Not overly sour at all.. but definitely not what I want in my dubbel.

D: Definitely not one of my favorite dubbels by any means. It's easy to drink but I just really don't want to, lol.

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Photo of ktrillionaire
2.59/5  rDev -28.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2

I love Petrus Aged Pale, and I strongly like Petrus Oud Bruin. Dubbel Bruin, not so much. But I didn't know that when I bought it, so I was very excited to try it.

A - Looks a deep chestnut, with a good enough head.

S - Smells of grapey funk, very exciting.

T - Oh no, it tastes like soy sauce and malt syrup. Disgusting. It does hide the alcohol well, it tastes more like Malta than brew. But that is not good for a Dubbel.

M - It felt decent as I spit it out. All jokes aside, the mouthfeel was not very good either, sort of thin-syrupy.

D - I have two bottles, but this one is too bad; I may not bother with the other one.

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Photo of santoslhalper
2.63/5  rDev -26.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

Appearence: Pours a dark ruby with a nice, creamy brown head that lasts the whole glass. Good clarity.

Smell: Sweet malt notes, including caramel and toffee, mix with some burnt and almost biscuit aromas.

Taste and Mouthfeel: Very winey and vinous, with huge grape and alcohol notes. The fruitiness is overpowering, with a raw burnt grain flavor in the background. Unbalanced and slufery, with a disgustingly cloying mouthfeel. The aftertaste is half wonderful grape flavors, but half disgusting stone flavors.

Drinkability and Overall: Half of this beer is delicious, half is terrible. Overall, the terrible half prevails, turning this into a cloying, overly sweet, unbalanced brew. PASS.

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Photo of russpowell
2.65/5  rDev -26.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

Pours an effervescent walnut with 2+ fingers of mocha colored head. Average head retention & lacing

S: Dark fruit (cherry & jammy notes especially),

T: Faint figgyness, some cheeey & a touch of strawberry mixes with brown bread. A touch of raisin as this warms along with dryness, Finishes watery with some raisin notes & a touch of dark candi sugar; yawn

MF: Light/medium bodied with slight carbonation, thins out as it warms

Very underwhelming dubbel. This mixed gift pack is all over the map, some good, some not...

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Photo of ThaCreep
2.73/5  rDev -24.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

Nose of roasted malt as well as yeast, slightly cellar, which is a think of caramel. Fruits almost non-existent in the nostrils. Brown sugar in the mouth. Slightly sweet, slightly spicy but not as a beautiful way. Finish a little bitter but without much imagination. Dubbel a very classic, nothing transcendent. Basic, too simplistic.

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Photo of tronester
2.79/5  rDev -22.5%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Pours a dark brown, with a medium tan head. Smells like vinegar. Taste is very tart, vinegar and sourness up front. The middle tastes like your average dubbel. Finish is sour. Mouthfeel is better, somewhat full, average carbonation levels. Drinkability isnt very high, both of the beers I have been able to finish (at different settings) but I dont find them to be particularly pleasant. For the price, a terrible value. I would not buy this again, there are MUCH better dubbels out there.

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Photo of paterlodie
2.83/5  rDev -21.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

BB 14-07-07. Good presentation with nice welllasting thick yellowish head. Clear darkbrown beer make it a good presentation. Nose is dark candy, carramellic malty and a slight hint of roast. Good and full yeastester arome completes this quiet good smell. Taste is far oversweetened, dark candied, carramellic, alcoholic maltjuice. No this is certainly not my taste and for mouthfeel is to say that my mouth shrinked together while drinking this. For people who like it sweet probably highly enjoyable but less to me.

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Photo of u2carew
2.86/5  rDev -20.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

11.2oz longneck
A) Pours with a thin tan head that settles out quickly leaving a sticky lacing at the edge of the glass. Deep amber in color. Semi-sticky lacing on the drink down.
S) Brown sugar. Hints of molasses and banana.
T) Caramel malts. Hints of brown sugar and maple syrup. A sweet cola-like taste. Grainy and bitter in the finish.
M) Quite carbonated. Medium body. Dry finish.
O) Not that great. The taste profile is similar to a beer cola. As for characteristics of a Dubbel this brew contains many of them from the hops to the carbonation.

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Photo of BuckeyeNation
2.96/5  rDev -17.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Cherry caramel with lemon peel and orange peel trim. I like the beer, especially when backlit, and I like the large crown at least as much. It's golden brown sugar in color, frothily creamy in texture and is gracing the glass with plenty of sticky lace. This one is impressive right out of the chute...

... and stumbles on the first turn. The nose is strangely underpowered. I get faint whiffs of sweet, dark fruit and mild clove spice. The flavor needs to be much more forthcoming for me to be even slightly impressed with Brouwerij Bavik's version of a Belgian dubbel, or 'Dubbel Bruin' as the label reads.

The beer tastes artificially flavored to me and is way too sweet. It tastes like the brewers used caramel extract and a few too many scoops of dark candy sugar. Dark corn syrup perhaps? The best way that I can think of to describe the flavor in a general sense is that it tastes like a child's cartoon drawing rather than a beautiful watercolor. It's all garish and messy and dumbed down.

As for specifics: dates swimming in caramel and light molasses pretty much covers it. Let's throw in a little ground clove that identifies it as a Belgian beer rather than a standard brown ale. Actually, Dubbel Bruin tastes like an unsuccessful attempt by an American brewer to expand into the classically Belgian styles.

The mouthfeel is too full, too syrupy. I'm sure all the added sugar is partly responsible, as is a curious lack of carbonation. After the impressive head creation on the initial pour, the bubbles have decided to knock off for the day. Subsequent pours continue to generate several fingers of foam, but it sure doesn't feel like they're doing much in the mouth.

Other than Aged Pale Ale, which I think is their finest creation, I've never really been wowed by beer from this brewery. Dubbel Bruin is decent and is easy to drink, but compared to the world's finest versions, its amateurish at best.

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Photo of jbphoto88
3/5  rDev -16.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Deep leathery red with a full inch of brown head that dissipates to a thin collar. Light reddish highlights peak through the glass.

Smell is woody and earthy with a faint cherry scent. Slightly spicy with a hint of malts but subdued and mild.

I dig the scent but the taste looses it for me. It taste like cherry syrup from 7-11. I don't get any of the typical Belgian flavors like bready yeast or darker fruits and caramelized malts. In fact this is so sweet it feels like its eating through my teeth and giving me cavities. The malts finally appear after it warms up but nothing great.

Not a bad mouthfeel but nothing great. It has a smooth carbonation but the beer's finish is fake. It's too sweet and tastes more like a poor extract homebrew attempt. I have to take away points on the drinkability. This is like cough syrup in a bottle with a cool beer label. I would avoid this one.

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Photo of MusicaleMike
3.01/5  rDev -16.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.5

A: The body is a clear dark brown with serious ruby undertones. On top of that sits about two fingers worth of tan, sea-foam like head. It begins to stick to the glass as it dies down. It looks good.

S: The smell is definitely mild. There is no trace of hops, but there is a light, sweet malt smell. Not much else to speak of...not complex.

T: The taste is a caramel sweetness, with notes of figs or raisins. Again, hops are absent in this beer's palate. I didn't find a trace of bitterness, and in my opinion the unbalanced nature of this beer is unappealing. I realize that suits the style, yet I find that the malt character is not complex to hold its own.

M: It is full-bodied, sweet, syrupy and soft. The beer literally makes my lips feel sticky. This beer has a lot of retained sugars if I haven't made that clear yet.

D: I did not find this to be a good beer. I am not sure if that is because I don't like the style or if this is just not that great. The alcohol is not too strong, but the beer it too sugary to be very drinkable. I wouldn't drink this beer again.

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Photo of theopholis
3.05/5  rDev -15.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.5

Appearance- Poured a very, rich, clear, burnt mahogany into the mug. The head was thick, creamy, tan, with good retention. The head fades into a solid ring that leaves a fair bit of sticky lacing down the glass.

Aroma- Somewhat subdues. Some dark fruit. raisin, sour cherry. Some caramel sweet aroma comes through

Taste- Lots of malt sweetness. Somewhat cloying. Quite disappointeding after the aroma.

Mouthfeel- Medium body. Good carbonation level.

Drinkability0 Aside from the taste, this is actually a pretty good beer.

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Photo of Absumaster
3.06/5  rDev -15%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

This beer pours a red brown color and a fine-bubbled head. The beer is not clear.

Smell of molasses, caramel and a burned oiliness. There is some dark chocolate in there which is slightly burned. The yeast gives the beer a musty, unfresh smell.

Taste is caramellic, molasses and candi sugar with some sour notes. The yeast appears to be quite funky and not very fresh. I found this taste in some lambics and I did not like it there either. It certainly does not fit in a dubbel IMO. Aftertaste is sweet, but the beer wasn't sweet but dry.

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Photo of Richardbeerlover
3.08/5  rDev -14.4%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Poured from a bottle into a beer glass. The head was humongous and lasts a long time. Towards the end of the pour there are lots of dark reddish sediment. You can smell the alcohol and taste it. Very heavy carbonation with a very slight sourness that ends with a bitter finish. Nice dark reddish caramel color. Not a smooth beer to drink. Has a very woody smell and taste to it. Good substance. Overall not a bad beer.

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Photo of HalfFull
3.12/5  rDev -13.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Into a large wine glass from a 330 ml. bottle. Opens with a standard pffft. I then reach for a glass and find half the beer foamed over onto the counter. Only a very firm pour after that outgassing lets this beer garner a head of foam. Looks good otherwise, clear and ruby in the light but the head dissipates way too fast.

Decent nose with a bit of cherry liqueur and some chocolate notes. Bit too sweet/simple to decipher more subtle dried fruit aromas. Improves with a bit of warming yet never takes off.

Flavor suffers from the immediate blow off of carbonation. Bit flat and thin in body and feel as a result. Bit of roasted chocolate malt and a light caramel presence. Apparent sweetness becomes somewhat cloying as the carbonation lessens. Overall a bit too sweet in a simple way.

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Photo of doktorhops
3.13/5  rDev -13.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

I do like these guys, Petrus, they bring styles such as Flanders Oud Bruin and Red Ales within the grasp of the ordinary man (or beer fancying woman) with their almost macro pricing. And their beers are good too, not Rodenbach or Rochefort brilliant, but satisfying nonetheless, so I say: Petrus, keep up the good work. Thus far I’ve imbibed two of the Oud Bruins on offer so now it’s time to try their Dubbel, which is also Bruin (hazard a guess what Petrus’s favourite colour is).

Poured from a 330ml bottle into a Duvel tulip.

A: Cloudy mahogany (I have many mahogany-coloured leather bound books in my library) body with specks of light tan and a lace ring where presumably a head once was. 8/10.

S: Dark fruits (plum, raisin and date) hints of dark rum, brown sugar and bread notes abound. There’s nothing subtle about this aroma and more’s the better for it [wait, is that a real saying? “more’s the better for it” sounds frankly made up] Yeah it is... shuddup me. 7/10.

T: Taste is a bit of a let-down. It’s sweet but not overly so, and watery (but we’ll get to that, patience) with notes of: Date, brown sugar and bread yeast. Finish struggles to put up anything bitter to cut through the sweetness... oh yeah a hint Diacetyl too (butteriness chemical-ified). Overall this beer is lacking anything close to the complexity of a decent Belgian Dubbel and almost crosses into soft-drink territory with a Coke-like sweetness backed up by nothing. 6/10.

M: Mid to light, watery bodied with a tight but flat carbonation... wateriness is not a good attribute for a Dubbel! 5/10.

D: Well this is the least loveable Petrus beer I’ve had thus far, whereas the other brews were cheap but endearing this Dubbel is simply cheap but lacking-in-everything-that-makes-a-Dubbel-great. I will take a relatively similar priced but much tastier Grimbergen Dubbel over this any day of the week... except Tuesday, Tuesday is watery-cheap-lacking-complexity-beer day for me. 6/10.

Food match: Roast banquet meats and heavy gravy + a selection of roasted vegetables would work well with this brew despite the watery character.

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Photo of DogFood11
3.14/5  rDev -12.8%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Fluffy tan head sits atop a ruddy brown body. Head has good staying power and leaves sliding lace.

Like most dubbels this is dominated mostly by the malt profile. Malts are leaning towards caramel but there is also a drying powder like chocolate in the backdrop and mouthfeel. Something is "tin" like as well. Especially in the nose and it thankfully doesn't transfer to the taste. Hard candy, sugared malts, really kick in as it warms a bit. Spices are subdued but evident.

Notes: The metallic smell was hard to get over but where the rubber hits the road this brew holds up well. The petrus line from Bavik has been hit or miss to me and this one is somewhere in the middle. Such a magnificent style that if I had never had a dubbel before I'd be impressed. Since that is not the case this one stacks up to be about average.

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Petrus Dubbel Bruin Ale from De Brabandere
3.6 out of 5 based on 311 ratings.
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