Petrus Dubbel Bruin Ale | De Brabandere

160 Reviews
Read the review
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

For Trade:
View: Beers | Events
User Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Alström Bros
Reviews: 160 | Ratings: 311
Photo of yourunclewalt
3.62/5  rDev +0.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A - Pours a murky brown-red

S - Strong berry / grape aromas, almost like a very light red wine. Rasberry and alcohol.

M - Medium body, light carbonation, small bite in the aftertaste. Without the carbonation, it would be hard to distinguish this from wine.

T - Sweet. Very strong berry presence, most notably blackberries and rasberries. The alcohol comes through prominently in the middle with an strongly malt-dominated aftertaste.

D - This would make a very good after-dinner drink, but for the most part, I don't know if I'd come back. A bit too sweet for my palate.

 585 characters

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.

 741 characters

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.

 544 characters

Photo of TurdFurgison
4.15/5  rDev +15.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Had in Pittsburgh after trying the Petrus Blonde. The beer poured with a huge head, similar to the blonde but obviously a dark brown color. The aroma was sweet and a little rasiny/figgy, and the flavor was sweet and dark fruity but could have been a little richer. It was pretty good nonetheless, but not in the top 10 dubbels-of-all-time list.

 344 characters

Photo of weeare138
3.88/5  rDev +7.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On tap at Ludwig's Garten...
Appears a dark, mahogany brown with a small, fluffy tan head that fades out into a mild cap. Scattered bits of lacing are left around the goblet.
Smell is of caramel, brown sugar, vanilla, raisins, sugar cookies, light spice, gentle hints of cocoa powder in the background.
Taste is of the mentioned aromas with a smooth, cookie-like, sweetness that doesn't a touch of blackstrap molasses added to a sugar cookie with some raisins.
Mouthfeel is medium bodied, smooth, mildly sweet, and satisfying.

 548 characters

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.

 1,931 characters

Photo of oelergud
4/5  rDev +11.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Golden brown honey body largely opaque.
Abit of carbonation. Tan and creamy beautiful
head with medium bubbles here and there.
Low retention and lace.
Prune and raisen in the nose over a malty base
with a hint of nut.
Very sweet prune flavor still with some raisen.
Not alot of hops but plenty of sweet dark
fruit flavors. Aftertaste is mostly sweet as well
with some sherry notes coming through to
nicely finish off the taste.
m: Medium body, slightly prickling and hydrating.
Good drinkability, not too high abv, pleasant
and good. This would probably make a good
gateway to craft beer.


 615 characters

Photo of emerge077
3.7/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Served at cellar temperature, around 50º-55º.

Looks good pouring into a wide chalice, fluffy tan foam with some bigger bubbles rising to the surface. Body looks nearly opaque, a dark chestnut brown.

Smell has a slight raisiny cocoa touch, with some mustiness and grain.

Taste is moderately sweet, raisin, toasted dark malt, aftertaste like cheerios. Smooth mouthfeel, some prickly carbonation. At room temp. there's a maple syrup taste. Odd metallic note lowers the good taste impression a little. Dry tobacco in the aftertaste, strangely enough.

This was much better than the Allagash Dubbel I recently had, maybe a little sweet for some tastes.

 662 characters

Photo of MaltyGoodness
3.5/5  rDev -2.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

11.2 oz bottle

Pours a clear chestnut brown with a creamy tan head that thins. Mild lacing on the glass.

Mild bready and yeasty aroma with a light nutty malty smell.

Sweet and caramel malty upfront leading into mild yeasty and bready flavors with a light nuttiness. Finishes with a lingering sweetness.

Medium-full body, solid carbonation.

A fair dubbel that gave me no real problems with drinking the bottle.

 424 characters

Photo of hero27
4/5  rDev +11.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

11.2 oz bottle.
6.5% abv.

Pours a murky brown with a very respectable light brown head of cascading foam. Slightly too oily to leave much for lacing.
Plenty of chocolate in the aroma, mixed with dark obviously solid malt base in this one.
I expected there to be a roasted malt and chocolate flavor, but I was set aback by the raisin and dark fruit flavors (in a good way). This is really much more complex than most dubbels. Along with the dominating dark fruits, it's lightly spicy, with a nice earthy malt, and some hops thrown in also. Very rich and quite delicious. As for alcohol...does this have any?..not detected at all.
The mouthfeel is quite smooth and the aftertaste is slightly sweet..the flavors linger for quite a while.
I enjoyed this one. Not a bad beer at all for my 500th review (has it been that many already?

 857 characters

Photo of Beeryce
3.7/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Purchased and reviewed at Belgian Beer Café. The 330ml bottle was under R$15 and was poured into awesome Petrus chalice producing a huge khaki colored head. The stability was excellent with a nice layer of suds persisting until the end of the beer, which generated a decent amount of lacing. The beer itself was a dark, rich opaque brown color.

The nose was a blast of raw malt or more of a wort smell; very sweet with roasted maltiness only coming through faintly. Raisins and brown sugar dominate with a hint of very ripe bananas. Overall very good, but a little too worty, which overpowered everything.

The taste is much the same as the nose, but with a slightly bright sweet citrus flavor in the front. This is quickly overpowered by the same strong sweet and malty wortiness that dominated the nose. Again the same raisin, brown sugar and ripe banana flavors are detectable in the unfermented sugar taste. Hints of alcohol are slightly detectable through the masking syrupiness. The sweetness slightly fades in the finish to reveal a bitter maltiness that is a little hully and unroasted in flavor.

The mouthfeel is slightly viscous which matches the overall taste wonderfully, but finishes a little dry. In combination with the nose and taste the mouthfeel makes this a rather drinkable beer. However, due to the slightly overpowering wortiness I can’t say that I could have more than two of these in a row. It’s also not as good of a deal as other Dubbels in that it is less complex and a little light in alcohol.

This is a great Dubbel, but rather different than Trappist Dubbels I have had. I am not sure if the wortiness is true to style but it was very unusual and strangely delicious. I think this is a must try even though it is not a Trappist or Abby Dubbel.

 1,789 characters

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.

 832 characters

Photo of ccrida
3.34/5  rDev -7.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Server on draft in Petrus chalice, the Dubbel was dark brown with a very small white head which quickly dissipated and left no lace. The was no noticeable aroma. The taste is rather pleasant however, one of my favorite Dubbel's. It was sweet, malty and vinous, with notes of toffee and brown sugar and a slight bite, not from the alcohol I think but the minerals. The mouthfeel was rich and a bit syrupy from all the malt, but the complexity from the water and yeast made it relatively drinkable.

 496 characters

Photo of brentk56
3.65/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: Pours a cloudy cola brown color with a frothy tan head that retains well and leaves splashy lacing all over the chalice

Smell: Caramel, candi sugar, raisins and vanilla

Taste: Starts with a rich burnt raisin and caramel flavor that is moderated by some tart green apples; after the swallow, the rich sweet flavors detected up front dominate the finish

Mouthfeel: Medium bodied, slightly sticky with light carbonation

Drinkability: Decent, but cetainly not stellar; would benefit from a more balanced profile

 523 characters

Photo of geexploitation
3.97/5  rDev +10.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This dubbel pours a medium brown that looks teasingly translucent. Smallish head that fades to a grey dusting. Nose is quite nice -- juicy, fruity and sweet. Candi sugar in the nose, along with some raisins and granny smith apples. Initially acidic on the tongue, with fruit esters of apples coming out. Turns sweet at the mid-palate, with slightly caramelized candi sugar the focus. Dry finish. Mouthfeel is quite varied -- acidic at first, slick next, but never too heavy. Overall, this was a very nice, drinkable Belgian dubbel. Not as heavy as many of the abbey versions, but flavorful and interesting nonetheless.

 618 characters

Photo of peabody
3.18/5  rDev -11.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Pours out a fairly dark brown with lots of light brown suds that leave lacing when they finally dissapate.
Caramel and yeast with just a slight fruity aroma, mabey raisin. A little more alcohol in this one. Great overall aroma though.
A sweet taste followed by a dirty wash flavor that dissapeared quickly and left a fruity sweet alcohol flavor in my mouth.
It leaves a dark sweet flavor in the mouth and the alcohol is always present but not overpowering.
Don't quite like this one from Petrus but I will try again.

 520 characters

Photo of cbl2
3.9/5  rDev +8.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

8/26/2006 $3.50 11.2 oz. 6.50% No best by date, but coded 38616.


Poured a dark brown, with just subtle hints of orange around the edges. Topped by an inch of dense tan/brown head that leaves a nice lace as it settles.


Sweet ginger snap cookes with hints of sweet bread. Dark and inviting ripe fruit.


Smooth mouthfeel coupled with an intensely sweet ripe plum flavor characteristic. As it warms, a root/ginger beer flavor emerges. Not overly complex as one would expect from a Belgian, but enjoyable nonetheless.

 569 characters

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.

 1,051 characters

Photo of OldSock
3.76/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Appearance – 11.2 oz bottle from Stateline. Poured into my tulip at about 50 degrees. Deep brown beer with red highlights and a big tan head.

Smell – Fruits and wine, some pleasant oxidation. An odd dubbel, smells like it has some age on it and not enough malt.

Taste – Chocolate and dark fruit, with a hint of spice. Malty, but with an even handed bitterness that keeps the beer balanced. As it warms I catch a bit of fusel alcohol, but it is not unpleasant. There just isn't enough complexity here, it starts off fine, but the flavor doesn't develop as I drink.

Mouthfeel – Medium for the style with spritzy carbonation.

Drinkability & Notes – Not digestible as the Belgians would say, a bit too sweet for me. A nice summer dubbel, relatively light in alcohol with a smooth flavor that lacks the complexity of the archetypes of the style.

 857 characters

Photo of BeerNutta
3.68/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Petrus Dubbel.

A = Poured a dark brown with a fluffy light brown head.

S = Sweet smell of dark chocolate and soft prunes.

T = Initial caramel taste, followed by a sweet maple finish. Smooth to drink but lacking any real punch in the flavour department.

M = Slightly viscous giving it a smooth buttery texture. Nice.

D = Good. Easily drink one or two a session. More would be pushing it.

 401 characters

Photo of IceAce
3.78/5  rDev +5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

11.2 Oz. bottle coded: 38616 (No clue)

Pours such a dark brown that the sun can't even punch through. Yellow / tan collar of foam leaves outstanding lace on a beer-ready tulip. Nose is full-bodied with toasted earthy malts, half-a-spice-rack, and Belgian yeast.

Entry is zippy and well supported with a filling mouthfeel. Midtaste showcases carmalized malt while the nutmeg, corriander, ginger, orangepeel finish leaves a wonderful lip-licking sweetness on the lips.

Fire up the BBQ and let's braise some ribs!

 519 characters

Photo of Dithyramb
3.68/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured out as a hazy chestnut w/ruby highlights. Amazing retention and lacing. Loads of esters and sugarness on the aroma with bits of booze poking though.

Super malty brew that almost lost me with flirtations of sugary sweentess. Molasses and candied fruits mix with a hint of sourness on the finish.

A good brew that would be nice as an after dinner sipper. Might be a bit too sweet for some folks.

 407 characters

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.

 698 characters

Photo of Erdinger2003
4.38/5  rDev +21.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours out nicely with a big head that falls into a good strong lacing. Smells different, and therefore very good, from what I've reviewed lately. I always enjoy a new taste. It's full flavored and a little spicy with something I can't put my finger on. Mouthfeel is very good and the aftertaste is slightly sour in a good way. I would definetly have more of these.

 364 characters

Photo of TheLongBeachBum
3.58/5  rDev -0.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Sampled on Day 1 at the Lucky Baldwin’s 7th Annual Belgium Beer Festival.

Beer Listed at #43 of 60: Petrus Dubbel Bruin

Yet another in the varied range of Baviks ‘Petrus’ brews. Petrus Dubbel had a dark brown body with a pale biscuit colored head that had a good initial presentation but soon died with some nice lacing. Earthy malts with a splash of caramel and Devon toffee in the nose. Body has a nice thick feel to it, bold with a good supporting role from the conditioning. Tastes are attractive and inviting, solid malt backbone, lightly toasted malts with some caramel and toffee tones in the middle. Finish has a soft warmth and a lingering biscuit malt ending but an annoying sweetness takes over on the palate. Delicate fruity tones too as it warmed a little. Nice enough.

Nothing outstanding here but this was a very solid brew. Funny how I have picked up a lot of Petrus bottles to date yet I never seem to see this one. Draft version was good and well worth trying, if a little too sweet at times.

 1,024 characters

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

    Your go-to website for beer (since 1996), publishers of BeerAdvocate magazine (since 2006) and hosts of world-class beer events (since 2003). Respect Beer.
  • BeerAdvocate Microbrew Invitational

    Join us June 2-3, 2017 in Boston, Mass. for beer, cider, mead, kombucha and sake from over 70 small producers.

    Learn More
  • Subscribe to BeerAdvocate Magazine

    Support uncompromising beer advocacy and award-winning, independent journalism with a print subscription to BeerAdvocate magazine.