Abbey Beers

Abbey Beers

Specific rules also govern the use of the name ‘abdijbier’, but they are less strict than those applied to the Trappist beers and consequently there are probably more abbey beers than tripels in Belgium. As a rule abdijbier is brewed by a lay brewery that has a contract with a still active abbey that used to brew beer.

It is not mandatory to brew within the abbey, the brewery can use the abbey’s name and will pay royalties to the religious order which, just like the Trappists, is obliged to use the money to support itself and for charitable purposes. All characteristics of the Trappists, from taste to alcohol content, apply equally to abbey beers.

There are currently over 25 ‘recognised’ abbey beers to be found in Belgium. To earn the ‘recognised’ label there must be historic sources that make a reference to brewing activity at the abbey site.

The name of the beer could also refer to an ancient abbey, which may have now vanished but where brewing used to take place. In that case the monks have no active involvement in the brewery. The ancient abbey recipe may be used but in many cases the beer follows a new recipe.

However, brewing is often done under licence of the abbey. This means that the monks give their approval to every new advertising campaign, each new beer launch, each new label, etc. The abbey receives a percentage of annual profits. The main difference with Trappist beers is that abbey beers are brewed outside the walls of the Abbey.

Find our Abbey beers here below

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