Steenbrugge Dubbel Bruin | Brouwerij Palm NV

40 Reviews
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Steenbrugge Dubbel BruinSteenbrugge Dubbel Bruin

Brewed by:
Brouwerij Palm NV

Style: Dubbel

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 6.50%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by Absumaster on 07-13-2008

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Reviews: 40 | Ratings: 96
Photo of biegaman
3.33/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.25

Local beer isn't automatically great. Lagers made according to the Reinheitsgebot aren't guaranteed to taste clean and pure. American brewers souring or adding a ton of hops doesn't necessarily improve on anything. And Belgian ales brewed where there may once have stood an abbey doesn't mean they are noted and time-honored...

True, monks of the Benedictine St. Peter's Abbey in Steenbrugge did produce beer for a short time in the early 20th century. Whether what's in my glass tonight is anything like those ales is highly uncertain but, what's more, irrelevant; this bottle was only recently produced at Palm's giant, modern facility. My point is: let's review this beer on its merits, not its marketing.

Steenbrugge Dubbel adds the word 'Bruin' on the end for some unnecessary reason - they could just as well have added 'ruby', 'garnet' or any number of other synonyms for the colour red because its body is replete with those kinds of highlights. Regardless, it's a spectacularly sharp, clean complexion whatever you call it and is topped with a befitting light russet foam.

The aroma is sweet and shallow, but the lizard part of my brain lights up at the smell of all that dark candi sugar. The dried and figgy fruit nuances that normally accompany this kind of sweetness are hard to find and there's absolutely no depth on the malt front either; the hard toffee candies from grandma's candy bowl are present but there's no sense of nutty toastiness.

The first thing that came to mind was "cola". That impression grows with every sip as the taste becomes more cloying warmth and the bubbles gradually all fade, just like fountain pop. Lacking as much as the malt is the yeast - where are all (any?) of the style's characteristic spicy phenols and fruit esters? This might mix nicely with spiced rum but severely lacks on its own.

In Belgium drinkability is not open for debate - all styles of beer (Lambics excluded) are meant to be digestible and approachable to everyone. Palm, however, has exploited the spirit of this law by a making something weak, watery, superficial and sweet. Let's put it this way: Steenbrugge Bruin says as much about Belgian culture as a Jean Claude Van Damn movie.

 2,216 characters

Photo of delta490
3.32/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.25

Poured a clear medium brown with a thin pale tan head. Leaves nice sheets of lacing. The aroma is slightly tart with a hint of sweet. The taste is much the same. It is light bodied with a crisp finish and a hint of carbonation.

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Photo of stevoj
2.71/5  rDev -18.6%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.75

Sweet tasting dubbel, bland appearance with almost no head. Aroma is brown sugar and cola. taste is sweet and stings the palate. I expected better from this brewery.

 165 characters

Photo of Cyberkedi
4.03/5  rDev +21%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Strong, malty aroma has a firm fruity note and a hint of cloves. Pours a dark, somewhat transparent chestnut with a thick and fine-bubbled light tan head. Well-rounded malty, fruity flavor has hints of cloves, caramel and woody hops and just a nip of alcohol. Smooth texture has good, firm body and some fizz, leaving a malty finish that has touches of caramel and cloves. Gotta love them monks.

 395 characters

Photo of Dentist666
2.73/5  rDev -18%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.75

Poured into tulip.
Opaque reddish-brown beer with beige one-finger head, average retention.
Smell is rather appalling, metallic, dried fruits.
Taste of plum, lollipop, a bit tart, poor combination.
Hardly drinkable.

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Photo of Brutaltruth
3.79/5  rDev +13.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Enjoyed from a snifter from the big corked bottle, this fine dubbel pours a light brownish tinged red, almost a cloudy copper, with a decent tan head and very nice lacing. Nose of brown sugars, dark fruits, and musty yeasty goodness. Flavors of brown sugar candy malts to the front and sides, light notes of tart pie cherries on the back and light sweet biscuit. Dry finish, and light mouth feel. A solid dubbel.

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Photo of superspak
3.68/5  rDev +10.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

750 ml bottle into chalice, best before 12/26/2012. Pours fairly crystal clear deep ruby red color with a 1 finger dense light khaki head with good retention, that reduces to a thin cap that lingers. Light spotty soapy lacing clings on the glass, with a fair amount of streaming carbonation. Aromas of big raisin, plum, pear, fig, light banana, caramel, candi sugar, toast, brown bread, clove, pepper, herbal, and yeast earthiness. Nice and pleasant aromas with good balance and complexity of fruity/spicy yeast esters and moderate candi sugar//bread/caramel malts; with good strength. Taste of raisin, plum, pear, fig, apple, light banana, caramel, candi sugar, toast, brown bread, clove, herbal, light pepper, and yeast earthiness. Lingering notes of raisin, plum, pear, fig, apple, light banana, caramel, candi sugar, clove, toast, brown bread, light pepper, herbal, and yeast earthiness on the finish for a good bit. Nice complexity of fruity/earthy yeast ester and moderate caramel/bready/candi sugar malt flavors; with a solid malt/yeast flavor balance and zero cloying flavors after the finish. Medium carbonation and body; with a smooth, fairly crisp, and slightly slick mouthfeel that is good. Alcohol is very well hidden with only a slight warming present after the finish. Overall this was a nice Dubbel style. Good complexity of fruity/earthy yeast ester flavors with a fair amount of caramel/bready/candi sugar malts; and very smooth and crisp to sip on. Could have used some more maltiness to balance the yeast fruitiness, but was nicely enjoyable otherwise.

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Photo of Cheshire_Crew_Al
2.86/5  rDev -14.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 2.75

A: light tan head, dark amber

S: hint of grapes/raisins, not especially exciting

T: very dry on the palate, initially had an interesting raisin, almost wine-like finish, but as it warmed, it did not accumulate any flavor and the dryness dominates, too one-dimensional

M: medium-heavy carbonation masks the lack of flavor

O: slightly above average beer, not my personal taste, at times, the dryness was reminiscent of a rather pedestrian beer

 445 characters

Photo of beerpirates
1.83/5  rDev -45%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 1.75 | feel: 1.5 | overall: 1.75

too light, watery & thin, some malt, metalic flavor , dark fruits and a hint of spices & herbal at the end, too thinly stretched, almost watered down, boring , i don't understand why people make these kind of beers , it's just not good enough , o well ...

 255 characters

Photo of FLima
3.43/5  rDev +3%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Brown color with a three finger hear with medium retention.
Light aroma of slightly toasted malts and hints of wood, prunes and earthy hops.
Relatively malty and yeasty with a refreshing taste from earth hops, notes of dark fruits. Dry and mild bitter aftertaste.
Light body with medium carbonation.
This seemed to be a lighter Belgian dubbel, more thin and not as heavy in the condiments. On the other hand it seemed a bit more hoppy and less sweet than average. Not bad, but not great.

 487 characters

Photo of BlackHaddock
3.27/5  rDev -1.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

This cask version is a special brew for the 2012 Wetherspoons Beer Festival and is 0.5% less in ABV, so only 6.0%.

Hand-pulled pint in the Wetherspoons pub, Bridgnorth, Shropshire on 26th Oct 2012.

Interesting slant on a Belgian Brown and not really like the bottled one I had years ago.

This beer had a dull, murky brown body, on top a creamy foam head.

The nose was both yeasty and malty: with an off-ish, musty, moldy hint (not as off putting as it sounds).

The taste was malty and slightly yeasty but not sour or spicy. It was OK but not great, a bit thin and watery for what I was expecting.

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Photo of bluejacket74
3.33/5  rDev 0%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

750 ml caged and corked bottle, stamp on bottom of bottle says best before 17/09/12. Served in a DFH Signature glass, the beer pours a reddish/brown color with about an inch light tan head. Head retention and lacing are both decent enough. Aroma is nice but a bit light, it smells like dark fruit (raisins, plums), toffee, bready malt, and some nuts. Taste is similar to the aroma, but there's also the addition of some cinnamon, candy sugar, and some herbs. Mouthfeel/body is light/medium, it seems a bit thin for the style. But it is smooth with good carbonation. I think it's an OK dubbel. Not great, but not bad either. $8.99 a bottle.

 639 characters

Photo of atlason
3.97/5  rDev +19.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

750ml bottle into tulip.

A: Pours a brown color with generous head. Leaves very little lacing.

S: Dark raisin, slight roast, foamy yeast. Dried figs. Candied fruit.

T: Dry chocolate, mild belgian yeast, slightly chalky with some dark dried fruit. Hops are fairly subdued except for background bitterness. Has that certain je ne sais quoi yeast character of a proper dubbel. Aftertaste is pretty long lived and consistent.

M: Relatively light sugar fermentation body with medium carbonation. Feels very correct on the tongue.

O: This is a correct dubbel, slightly on the dry side.

 584 characters

Photo of BYOFB
4.12/5  rDev +23.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks Krust for sharing this one.

Pours brown with a nice tan head. Goood lacing.

Fruity, malty, bready aroma with dark fruits.

Taste follows aroma with malt and dark fruits coming through. A bit on the sweeter side. Enjoyable.

Medium mouthfeel. A hair light here.

Overall, very enjoyable and drinkable.

 309 characters

Photo of 51mmz0rz
3.3/5  rDev -0.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a 750mL bottle into a Westmalle chalice.

A: Clear medium brown body. Head is off white with okay retention, and a nice fine bubble.

S: Mild stinky fruitiness mixed with caramel malt aroma.

T: Quite bland honestly. There is a bit of nuttiness, but not much else going on here.

M: A little light and watery.

D: Pretty highly drinkable, but I am getting a very slight metallic taste that is somewhat bothersome.

Overall, a pretty forgettable're not missing anything by never drinking this.

 515 characters

Photo of avalon07
3.16/5  rDev -5.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

A: Poured from a bottle to a goblet. Had a brown color and a clear texture. Head was two inches, foamy, tan-colored, and fairly long-lasting. Average lacing.

S: An incredibly subdued aroma of malt and a little bit of fruit.

T: Tasted of malt, fruity esters, a nutty quality and some alcohol. This is a pretty thin flavor - at least in terms of the style. There's simply not that much going on.

M: A good amount of carbonation with a smooth and dry finish. Medium-bodied.

O: This beer does have a couple of good attributes, but it's ultimately pretty forgettable.

 566 characters

Photo of rvdoorn
4.2/5  rDev +26.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Look: the beer pours brown color with a small light-brown head
Smell: Roasted malts, dark fruits, caramel and yeast. Light nose.
Taste: The taste is not as sweet as the nose suggest. Malts, light caramel, grains, dark fruits, spicy hops and clove. Some spicy hop bitterness in aftertaste.
Mouthfeel: Medium-light body and medium carbonation
Overall: Good beer, will drink this more often

 387 characters

Photo of bristei
2.98/5  rDev -10.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Poured from 750mL bottle into a mug

A: Hazy rich amber color, almost caramel, lasting head, slightly apparent carbonation

S: Hints of molasses and chocolate syrup but not in an overpowering way. Distinct from, say, a chocolate porter but the scent is there nonetheless

T: Earthy, some hint of sweetness but again farrr from in your face about it, slight awareness of the elevated alcohol levels, hard to place my finger on the subtle flavors but I can tell they are there. Not bland.

M: Thin in the mouth, not much of a finish, but you can feel the slightly elevated alcohol

O: This is OK for a Dubbel. Pretty straightfoward, but it didn't seem like the brewer was trying to do much with it though. I would have liked a little fuller mouthfeel and some more distinct flavor profiles. Not bad, but not that great either.

 824 characters

Photo of rinhaak
3.3/5  rDev -0.9%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

22 oz. bottle poured into goblet.

Pours a dark purple/red, similar to a rich grape juice. Very little head: although some bubbles form at the top of the beer immediately after the pour, these dissipate quite quickly.

The nose is a little mild even after warming. Raisins, plums, and yeast aromas are present.

The mouth is pleasant, though not extraordinary. Cloves, ginger, gingerbread, and hints of cinnamon.

As I began drinking this beer, I enjoyed it, but counter to most dubbels, as it warmed I enjoyed it less. It became a little syrupy and cloyingly sweet. I certainly noticed the absence of hops: having now tasted gruut in several different Belgian beers, I can say I appreciate their historical significance, but I really like hops.

 746 characters

Photo of Knapp85
3.01/5  rDev -9.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

A typical Belgian Bruin. It had a dark brown color and a nice little head on it for a little while. The flavors were of dark fruits and roasted malts. The carbonation could have been amped up just a bit. Overall this brew wasn't too bad. There are better Belgian Dark ales around out there, but don't hesitate to try it if around.

 330 characters

Photo of Gehrig
3.18/5  rDev -4.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

25.4 oz. bottle.

Two pillowy fingers of slightly tan froth atop an amber-ruby body; nice duration and lacing. Decent fruit aromas, especially cherry and grape, with ample bready malt, and dashes of spice such as ginger and a touch of clove.

fruity, sweet taste, but thin in malt flavor as well as texture. It is also really straightforward, lacking the complexity of a good Dubbel. The more I drink of this, the less enamored I am with it. The mouthfeel does it no favors, lacking effervescence and beefy malt texture.

This is not an impressive Dubbel, and certainly wasn't worth the $6.99 price tag. Steenbrugge comes nowhere near top flight Dubbels, and I plan to come nowhere near another of these; not at the somewhat exorbitant--or any--price.

Mediocre, and avoidable.

 777 characters

Photo of jrallen34
2.43/5  rDev -27%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

On tap in Antwerp into a goblet...A medium brown with hints of ruby that is way too clear. A very light tan head with retention, no lacing...The aroma is dead and boring, light waif of alcohol and prunes...The taste is even worse, alcohol and chalk. A terribly light feel.

This is a horrible dubbel that you shouldn't even consider getting.

 341 characters

Photo of feloniousmonk
3.38/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Steen brugge Dubbel. Brewed in Belgium. With Gruut. (Huh?) Dubbel Bruin Ale.

Clear dusky brown appearance, crimson edges, thick long-lasting creamy, cocoa-toned head.

Warm, malty aromatics, sweet and bready, dark fruits, ginger, clove, cinnamon, cookie dough. soft, spicy, lovely.

Taste: sweet fruit again, spice, and deep, bready malt. But not as deep and dark as I'd like from a dubbel worth it's malt. A lighter, table-ready version, for sure. Chocolate and fruit, yeasty goodness, well-rounded and balanced in the mouth.
Medium-bodied, light finish. Very tasty, even if it utterly lacks the dense complexity I expect, no, demand, from a good dubbel. Tasty, but simple. Don't think I'll return to this one.

 713 characters

Photo of Jason
2.99/5  rDev -10.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

33cl brown bottle with a best before freshness date.

Typically great tan head with great retention, dark mahogany color with a good clarity. Faint husky malt, dried fruit and a hint of yeast ... not much there in the nose. Dry and smooth with a lighter body. Fruity, spicy with a quick kick of light estery alcohol. Quick note of phenolics ... bubble gum and herbs. Bone dry finish with not much lingering about.

Sinamar? Or does the sugar have coloring in it as the color does not match the flavor for the most part. Decent, not all that exciting for a Dubbel IMO.

 567 characters

Photo of flagmantho
3.88/5  rDev +16.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from 750mL bottle into a tulip.

Appearance: rich amber-brown hue with moderate haze and three fingers of rocky light tan foam. Head doesn't have great retention, but it's not too bad.

Smell: light aroma with a mostly fruity character. Starts of with apples and then segues into a more bready aroma with hints of darker, mustier plums and cherries. Not too bad, but as I said, it's pretty light in intensity.

Taste: much like the aroma, the flavor is somewhat light. Very malty with a lot of sweetness and more apples and plums. Aftertaste is more peary. This beer isn't rated terribly high, but I'm finding I rather like it.

Mouthfeel: medium-light body, lighter than I like in the style. Carbonation is pretty intense and well-integrated, though, so creaminess is pretty good. With just a little more body this would just about be perfect.

Drinkability: this beer has a good but light and not overpowering flavor. It has a nice fruitiness and isn't terribly heavy, so it's quite drinkable indeed. Steenbrugge Dubble has turned into a rather nice surprise for me; I'd have this again.

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Steenbrugge Dubbel Bruin from Brouwerij Palm NV
3.33 out of 5 based on 96 ratings.
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