Belgian Dubbel

Glassware: Tulip
  • Belgium
  • Ale
  • ABV = 6.0 – 7.6% (Elevated)^
  • IBU = 15-25
  • SRM = 10-17
A moderately strong, amber-coloured Belgian ale with rich malt flavour, a fruity yeast character and a light alcohol note.  

Similar in strength and balance to Belgian Blond Ale, but with a richer malt and ester profile. Should not be as malty as Doppelbock. Should not have crystal/caramel malt-type sweetness, like a British Brown Ale.

Appearance:

  • Colour^ = Light amber to amber
  • Clarity = Generally clear

Key Aromas & Flavours:

Aroma
  • Malt = Moderate; rich, malty-sweet, possibly with hints of chocolate, caramel and/or toast
  • Yeast = Moderate; fruity esters (raisins, plums, dried cherries most common; may include banana or apple) / low to moderate; phenols (light clove and spice, peppery) / low; higher alcohols (rose-like and/or perfumy)
  • Hops = None to low; spicy, herbal or floral, if present
Flavour
  • Malt = Moderate; rich, malty-sweet
  • Yeast = Low to moderate; dried fruit esters (raisin is common) / none to low; phenols (clove or pepper-like, if present)
  • Hops = None to low; spicy, herbal or floral, if present
  • Perceived Bitterness^ = Low
  • Balance = Towards the malt
Aftertaste/Finish

Moderately dry finish

Mouthfeel:

  • Body = Medium
  • Carbonation = Medium-high
  • Alcohol warmth = Light alcohol warmth

Characteristic Ingredients/Processes:

  • Malt = Pilsner malt, plus dark/caramelised sugar syrup
  • Yeast = Belgian ale yeast
  • Hops = Continental or English hop varietals (Saazer-type, Styrian Goldings or East Kent Goldings hops are traditional)
  • Process = Traditionally bottle conditioned (ie. refermented in the bottle)

Historical Development:

Originated at monasteries in the Middle Ages and was revived in the mid-1800s after the Napoleonic era.


Commercial Examples:

Westmalle Dubbel, Chimay Première, Trappistes Rochefort 6


^Sourced from the Cicerone Certification Program’s International Certified Beer Server Syllabus.
All other information is sourced from the BJCP 2015 Style Guidelines.


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