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.


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

Key Aromas & Flavours:

  • 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
  • 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

Moderately dry finish


  • 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.

Discovering Beer is not affiliated with or endorsed by the Cicerone® Certification Program.

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