08 August 2007

Ommegang Abbey Ale (NY)

Cooperstown's Ommegang brewery will be 10 years old this fall, but it has had a pretty good decade. In 2003 it was sold to Duvel Moortgat, and the label says this was brewed and bottled in Belgium. Thankfully, it's not priced like an import. I paid $4.99 for a 750 ml at my local supermarket.

It pours a deep burgundy color with a tannish head that lasts. The smell is somewhat fruity and perhaps a bit roasted. It's medium bodied with a moderate amount of carbonation. The taste is malty with dark fruits in the background: figs, raisins, plums and whatnot. Maybe a little chocolate cake as well. The finish definitely lingers. At 8.5% alcohol this is a strong ale or a double, though it wears it well.

If you've never tried this style, I'd point out that all the talk of fruit doesn't mean this is a fruit beer. It's a strong, dark ale; this ain't Magic Hat #9. I'm not experienced enough in Belgian-style ales to know how Ommegang compares to the best, but this is very good brew.

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