Highland Seven Sisters Abbey Style Ale | Highland Brewing

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Highland Seven Sisters Abbey Style AleHighland Seven Sisters Abbey Style Ale

Brewed by:
Highland Brewing
North Carolina, United States

Style: Dubbel

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 6.50%

Availability: Spring

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by paulieatworld on 03-15-2010

This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

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Reviews: 60 | Ratings: 77
Photo of Jadjunk
3.27/5  rDev -11.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

I know that this is last year's spring/summer seasonal, but I was surprised to hear that a few cases of this "retired" beer appeared in Athens two weeks ago and were selling fast. I picked up what may be the last six pack of Highland's Seven Sisters Abbey Style Ale seen in Georgia. I hope that time didn't have a major impact on the quality of this beer, which is clocking in at about a year old (No bottle date, but this was last produced in late spring 2011).

(Appearance) Beer pours a fizzy quality light tan that fizzles away quickly, leaving patchy surface cover with tons of carbonation bubbles at the edges. Lacing is thin and splotchy and lasts a short while on the sides of the glass. Color is a very hazy mahogany brown, suggestive of tons of yeast in suspension. Carbonation is extremely busy and active, one of the most fizzy looking beers I've seen in a long while. Overall the appearance isn't bad, but the head quality tanked severely if it was ever good to begin with. 3

(Smell) Caramel malts, dark belgian candied sugars, dark fruits (mostly raisins, some dates), a pinch of spice and a mild alcohol presence makes up the nose of this brew. A sweet toffee and oak aroma comes through in subtle notes. Aroma is pleasant, reminds me of some milder brown ales in character but does have a significant bready complexion brought on by the yeast. Potency is medium. Overall an appealing aroma. 3.5

(Taste) The Caramel and Belgian sugars carry over in full, but the fruits (and most of the spice) is lost at this stage. Complexity is limited; there probably should be a little more to the flavor than what is picked up, and the body falls a little short as a result. Yeast is discernible in small traces but doesn't play a big role in the flavor, letting the malt flavors take the front seat. My best comparison is raisin bread, alas not a very flavorful loaf. Overall, it's an enjoyable enough interpretation of a Belgian Dubbel, but falls short in flavor diversity and complexity, which leaves it a very average brew if not a highly drinkable one. 3

(Mouthfeel) Texture is a mild chewy and creamy texture, a notch thinner than I had anticipated. Carbonation is low in the mouth, despite what the eyes see which is a relief to know that the subtle flavors of the beer aren't overshadowed by a barrage of airy bubbles. Alcohol presence is low, body is medium. Overall it's a decent pairing with the taste but the body needs to be improved a bit. 3.5

(Overall) I tend to find Dubbels generally unimpressive if they boast mild and "drinkable" profiles in lieu of bold and enthusiastic flavors. This is a pretty good light drinker, not too filling and with a mild (enough) ABV, so I could see myself having more than one of these in a session, but I am not likely to buy it again even if seeing it returning to store shelves in the near future. It just doesn't have anything memorable for me, which is a bummer for any beer, especially Belgian-style ales. If you enjoy light-drinking Belgian styles, consider this your ideal Belgian-styled "lawn-mowing beer". 3.5

Highland Brewing's
Seven Sisters Abbey Style Ale

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Photo of readbaron
3.33/5  rDev -9.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Deep, clear crisp amber with a bit of off white foam that quickly fades into a ring. A tiny bit of lacing.

Smell is the best part of this beer - bready malts, with caramel and burnt sugar.

Taste is good. Bready and cereal malts are prevalent, and surprisingly there's a lot of black tea in the finish. Not as sweet as I'd imagined it would be.

Mouthfeel is pretty good - medium bodied and creamy. Nicely carbonated.

Overall, a tasty and easy drinking beer.

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Photo of mntlover
3.58/5  rDev -3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Want to thank merlin48 for this bottle.

Pours a hazy burnt orange color with smaller tan head that falls to a ring with some sparse lace.

Aroma is malty raisin bread, banana good dose of clove. Kind of dubbel meats a wheat brew.

Taste like aroma also half dubbel and half wheat. Malty bread like with fruits some raisins mingle with bananas and good dose of spice in the finish cloves and light peppery notes.

Mouthfeel is medium with lightly peppy carbonation.

Overall little confused not really a dubblel or a dunkel little bit of both.

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Photo of mactrail
3.73/5  rDev +1.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Rich brown ale with a tart finish.

Quite a lovely beer in the chalice with orange-mahoghany color and enough head Roasted malt dominates with a little sugary taste. I'd call it raisin bread. Malty with some acid notes. Hops are not much in evidence. Aftertaste is more of toast and just a hint of bitter burnt caramel. Every sip renews the tart fruitiness, like guava juice.

I was happy to find a six of these in the supermarket coming into Asheville late at night. High on drinkability. If it's not a classic Dubbel, it's a tasty brew of the sort we should have more of. Boston Beer, take note.

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Photo of trappistlover
3.22/5  rDev -12.7%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

(12oz bottle courtesy of ewright. Thanks Eric!!). Pours a crystal clear deep copper with 2 finger off-white head. Lots of carbonation bubbles as I would have suspected from the pour. The beer looks nice, but as a dubbel, I would have expected ample yeast to be present in the pour. Aroma has dried apricot, some caramel, and papaya. Taste is sweet, but its malty moreso than the nose would indicate. The fruit does begin to reappear a bit on the finish. Thin to medium bodied with a slick texture. I seem to be able to detect some alcohol with a slight burn on the tongue. This is a decent enough beer, but not very good as a dubbel.

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Photo of hooliganlife
3.62/5  rDev -1.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

spring 2010 bottling

pours a burnt copper leaving a light amount of head. very light retention.

tons of banana and funk. hint of clove and spice.

very similar to the nose, this is very funky and full of banana. strong belgian yeast flavor. nice sweetness through out. a hint of candied dark fruit.

a bit light for a dubbel. mild to moderate carbonation.

not bad, but not something i would openly seek out often.

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Photo of cjgator3
3.38/5  rDev -8.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

12oz bottle

A- Poured into a chalice. Pours a dark reddish brown color with an off-white head.

S- The aroma is sweet malts, dark fruits, some spices and Belgian yeast.

T- The taste like the aroma is dark fruits and some spices with some yeast in the finish. 

M- The mouthfeel is between light and medium bodied with a good amount of carbonation.

O- Overall, this is a decent Dubbel but there are plenty of better beers within this style to purchase again.

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Photo of legatovibrato24
3.45/5  rDev -6.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Amber hues appear from the pour, with a short lived head developing. A touch of roast and toast shining through more bold scents of banana, clove and hints of spice. Nowhere near the spice level of Allagash white, however it is still detectable.

Flavors range from roasty malt with slight spice, to some sips supplying savory fruit notes with brown sugars. The spice tends to come through in the finish and aftertaste, not so much on the peppercorn end of the scale, but more on the earthy, herbal green leaf side of things.

The feel is thin in the mouth, and the carbonation present but not overwhelming. This is a good beer, however it is not genre defining or defying. A worthy representative of a Dubbel style ale, but not a star.

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Photo of dnolan36
4.05/5  rDev +9.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Recommended by an employee at Total Wine. Picked up at the bargain price of $3.99 a 6-pack.

Nice golden yellow color with a slight haze. Nice white head with lovely lacing.

Very floral and malty at first with some fruit notes to follow such as banana.

The taste is similar to the nose with a light malty taste with a hint of banana and other fruits. The carbonation is more around the middle of the road.

I find this beer to be very drinkable. I could easily drink a few of these on a nice summer day.

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Photo of beergod1
3.35/5  rDev -9.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Pours an amber color with a thin head. Aroma of caramel, malt breadiness . Taste has some spiciness to it - along with some roasted malts, earthy/grassy/floral notes - finishing with some clove. Pretty light in appearance for a dubbel. Not bad, but so many other Dubbels out there that are better.

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Photo of sulldaddy
4.22/5  rDev +14.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Sampled this brew at cellar temp poured into a snifter. The beer is a slightly hazy copper hue with fluffy white head of 1 cm on a gentle pour.
Aroma is fruity with apricots and white grapes and some general fruit sweetness. No hops or booze detected here.
First sip reveals an average body with gentle yet tingly carbonation.
Smooth texture aids with making this beer highly drinkable and it flows down my gullet pretty easily.
Flavor is sweet malt with some fruit just as the nose advertises. I get some caramel and general sugar hits with apricots and again white grape. A bit of green apple pokes in but doesnt make the beer tart, just a little contrast to the sweet grapes.
The booze is hidden and this beer drinks fast. I enjoy the flavors and well mixed overall beer. Glad I got to try this one and I would pick up another bottle if given the chance.

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Photo of DarthGreybier
2.75/5  rDev -25.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

poured into a pint glass appears a clear auburn color with lots of bubbles that disappear too quickly cameo head no lacing.
malty sugary aroma like you just put it in.
taste is little less than expected but in line with the style though not as intense as most.light on the tongue.with an acidicfinish.I am a big fan of belgian ales including abbey varieties but this ale was not one I would recomend.

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Photo of TheDudeBeers
3.32/5  rDev -10%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

A - Light mahogany in color. About a half finger of head.
S - Malt, sugar, spices
T - A really sweet malty taste with a spicy finish
M - Kinda heavy with a lot of carbonation
D - Overall, not very drinkable. Decent to drink one, but I'm glad I don't have two.

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Photo of joepais
4.07/5  rDev +10.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Received this in the under 100 BIF thanks to Kirkpjr . I poured this brew in to a challis and was greeted with a light amount of a off white head on top of a ruby colored brew. I got a lot of Belgian yeast of the nose with some dark fruits as well. The flavor was dark fruits with a touch of spice. It felt medium bodied with light carbonation. I was surprised by this one I thought it was a good Dubbel from an American brewer I would not hesitate in grabbing this at all

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Photo of TheHoppiest
3.53/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a mahogany-ruby with minimal head and minimal lacing.

Smells of grapes and currants. Also has a bit biscuit smell.

Has a yeasty malty taste, mild fruit, mild toffee. not complex at all

Mild to medium mouthfeel.

Decent, and not offensive, but also not terribly memorable.

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Photo of Georgiabeer
3.5/5  rDev -5.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours an orange amber with a coarse bubbled head that clings to the side of the glass with fairly large bubbles. Smells and tastes fairly light. Honeyed malt, on the sweeter side, but also slightly watery, a tiny touch of graininess, and some light apricot and wildflower flavors. Tastes a tad washed out and a bit too simple.

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Photo of chickenflea
4.25/5  rDev +15.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Bottle was a gift from Duane. I have been pleasantly surprised by Highland in the past and looked forward to this brew. It poured a cloudy golden caramel. Small with head dissipated quickly. Aroma was graham crackers with mild fruit and honey and yeast. A hint of spice and grain. Medium carbonation with a very smooth texture. Creamy. Soft banana and a hit of spice. The flavor was bready with a touch of honey sweetness and a mild spicy finish. Very tasty. No off notes at all. One the my favorite dubbels so far. Good job Highland. I was sorry my brother gave me only one. I will look for this one soon.

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Photo of welldigger888
3.51/5  rDev -4.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

poured into a standard american pint glass. orange seems to be the predominate color on this elixer. Decent white head that leaves good lacing down the glass. Nice mix of bubble sizes on the head as well.Mostly a yeasty aroma with some bananna and alchol. Creamy bananna clove yeasty boozey estersdominate the flav. Very creamy mouthfeel, very well done. Will drink this right up.

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Photo of TheKingofWichita
3.77/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Pours a very clear ruby color with a tiny head and some small lacing. Smells of yeast bread, bubblegum, and some dark fruits. Tastes of spices from the yeast, malts, figs, plums, biscuit and a little caramel in there. Maybe some citrus. Mouthfeel is medium with a light carbonation in the background. Drinkability is average.

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Photo of bucklemyshoe
3.54/5  rDev -4.1%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Notes from 10/15/2010:

12 oz. bottle at 42* into a chalice.

A: This pours an absolutely clear, light ruby color with no head, no lace, but a few carbonation bubbles.

S: It smells of bubble gum, biscuit, an authentic Belgian yeast character, some maltiness, and perhaps some figs.

T: Caramel, bubble gum, spicy yeast, some dark fruit flavors, and a touch of citrus tang come through.

M: This isn't very thick and the only lasting flavor is the yeast.

D: This is incredibly light for the style (like Terrapin Double Feature). It tastes like a light tripel + some dark fruits.

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Photo of Deuane
3.43/5  rDev -7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A-Bright copper with a thin, bright eggshell white head. Head reduces quickly to a thin ring and leaves spotty lace.

S-Disappointingly ho-hum for a style I would expect more from. Light notes of citrus fruit, earthy mustiness and a vague hint of yeast spiciness.

T-A touch more zip on the palate with pleasantly sweet fruit (apple/pear) notes with underlying biscuit malt, light, dry cocoa and chocolate orange candy and candi sugar sweetness in the finish. While this is all very nice it is kinda light and takes a while for it all to develop.

M-Medium bodied with a decent up front sharpness that ends with a pleasant and surprising creaminess. Flavours are light but linger nicely.

D-Decent and enjoyable in the long run but somewhat disappointing with the lack of aroma and the too subtle flavour. I know Highland isn't known for their Belgian styles and well....this one shows it.

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Photo of nickfl
3.65/5  rDev -1.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A - Poured with one finger of off-white foam that rests on top of a clear, dark copper colored body. The head settles fairly quickly and leaves only light lace.

S - Spicy yeast aromas of clove and cinnamon with a hint of red apple and pear. Some light caramel malt in the background with toasty notes.

T - Sweet, toasty malt up front with red apple yeast character. A touch of toffee appears in the middle with some clove and more red apple. Finishes with increasing spice character of clove and coriander as well as some grassy hops and moderate bitterness.

M - Medium-thick body, moderately high carbonation, and a balanced finish.

D - Well, this beer is definitely Belgian but I am not sure that it is a dubbel. It is too lightly colored for the style and it is also lacking in the corresponding caramel malt character. The yeast is pungent, but leans more towards the spicy side than the more common fruity notes of plum and caramel that one might normally expect in a dark Belgian ale. The spice is not unpleasant, but I find that it doesn't work as well in dark beers as it does in lighter styles such as tripels, and this beer is just a bit too dark for spicy yeast. This is a decent and drinkable beer, but the clash between the spice of the yeast and the toasted character of the malt keeps it from being anything more than that.

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Photo of chefkevlar
3.97/5  rDev +7.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Pours a medium orange/tan color with a thick layer of finely textured white head. The head quickly lowers and leaves a moderate amount of lacing

S: Aromas of tropical fruit and citrus dominate, with backgroud notes of honey and spices.

T: The flavor is complex and pretty much what I expected from a dubbel. There are notes of banana, orange, peppercorn, cinnamon, and apple. The flavor is initally fairly sweet, but the finish is dry.

M: Very smooth, with a medium body and light carbonation

D: Very enjoyable, the flavor profile is nice, and at 6.5% could be consumed very easily.

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Photo of Kegatron
3.43/5  rDev -7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

12 oz bottle into a goblet.

Pours a clear effervescent copper, with a thin fizzy head of eggshell-white colored foam. This peters down pretty quickly; leaving just some light foaminess around the edges that leaves a touch of spotty lacing back. The aroma is honestly not giving up a whole lot to me here, as I'm mostly getting mostly just some notes of fruit and earth and some very light spice and bubblegum phenols coming out in the back. There is an also a bit of a flat grainy sweetness and a touch of warmth present but that's about it. This is a bit disappointing.

The taste fairs a bit better, being sweet with bread, light cocoa, and sugary candy notes. Fruity flavors of apple and orange add a little extra sweetness to this as well. Spice and low bittering earthy character give this some zip, as both linger with a steady dryness for a good bit. The mouthfeel is medium bodied, maybe a little fuller, with a sharp creaminess to it that fills up the mouth but still stays relatively smooth feeling. There is some light alcohol warmth presence but it seems more confined to the body, with any in the taste helping to add some sharpness to the overall profile.

The lack of a nose really hurt this one I think but things got a little more robust in the taste and feel. Not the worst Dubbel that I've put my lips to but I was expecting a little more out of this one, especially coming from Highland.

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Photo of zoso493
3.27/5  rDev -11.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a 12 oz. bottle into a Chimay chalice.

Appearance: At first pour, this looks nothing like the classic double. It pours a coppery amber color that looks more like an American pale ale than anything. There is also almost no head whatsoever, and even my glass' laser etching is struggling to produce any meaningful carbonation. No sediment is present on the bottom of the glass either, which is a bit strange for a Belgian dubbel. Overall, this is a bad start.

Smell: The nose is a bit off for a dubbel, but it's not too bad. There is a good deal of grain and spice that I can pick up, but not any of the thickly sugary or sharp estery smells that I like in my dubbels. It's not a bad-smelling brew, but strays far from a conventional dubbel.

Taste: Follows the scent. There is only a slight graininess to the taste, with a hint of dark druit in the background somewhere. This is certainly a far cry from the better Belgian dubbels that I've had, as it lacks the usual molasses, brown sugar and other sweet malts that are typically present.

Mouthfeel: What little body Seven Sisters Abbey Ale has must surely be derived from its lack of carbonation. I can't say this is watery beer, but it is definitely on the thin side.

Drinkability: This is not a bad-drinking brew. It's not so high in ABV and is not particularly thick so I guess you could have a couple, but I've taken my time with this bottle.

Overall, this is the first disappointing brew I've had from Highland Brewing. It misses the mark in a big way if a Belgian dubbel was the goal. While I will still firmly remain a loyal patron to their American style ales, I think I may avoid their takes on Belgians in the future, as this was not the greatest dubbel.

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Highland Seven Sisters Abbey Style Ale from Highland Brewing
3.69 out of 5 based on 77 ratings.
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