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Belgian Tripel - The Defiant Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Belgian TripelBelgian Tripel

Educational use only; do not reuse.
very good

48 Reviews

(Read More)
Reviews: 48
Hads: 123
Avg: 3.91
pDev: 25.06%
Wants: 17
Gots: 15 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
The Defiant Brewing Company visit their website
New York, United States

Style | ABV
Tripel |  9.00% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: Sammy on 06-01-2008

No notes at this time.
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Belgian Tripel Alström Bros
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Reviews: 48 | Hads: 123
Photo of Boto
3.6/5  rDev -7.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

750ml bottle: This one pours a crystal clear, golden color. There was a thin white head that didn’t linger or leave any lacing. An interesting aroma. It doesn’t smell much like a tripel at all. A little light. It has a little of a chardonnay feel to the nose. Some peppery spices. The taste is OK. It had a bit of a lighter feel to it for a tripel. A touch of a spiciness, faint wheat, some faint fruits. Not a leading example of the style, nor does it earn any real points for being something creative.

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Photo of Premo88
3.94/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12.68 oz. bottle poured into small snifter
courtesy of @TongoRad vis NBS BIF No. 1

L: gorgeous clear light yellow-gold with only a few floaties in it (I tried to leave the yeast in the bottle and almost pulled it off); solid head of white to off-white foam, maybe 1/2-inch tall, not much sticking or lacing but a cool 50/50 skin and good collar ... the color is amazing -- it's very similar to light lager yellow but has just a hint of darkness to it

S: sour grapes, white wine, dry white wine ... it's getting almost past tart into sour range; now some sweetness, sweeter grapes, maybe a hint of banana, clove or all-spice -- but only a hint ... it's seems a bit like a witbier but only seems because a big sugar sweetness comes in like a radio signal going in and out, and that sweet fully masks any spice note ... very interesting

T: witbier-like at first with some definite spice notes thrown into the tart/sour grapes, slight banana sweet flavor ... boy is it good as we go, gets a good bit of that abbey ale-candi sugar flavor, but like the monks do it: not too much, just enough to taste; drinking the final 1/8 from the bottle with all that yummy yeast is a treat, a bit hefeweizen-like with good yeast/wheat-like twang of banana.

F: dangerously drinkable like a good tripel should be ... at times it feels maybe a bit soft, but, man, that could be looney talk because I'm sucking it down like water and the carbonation is very good -- "soft" here might actually be just a bit of weight

O: the best American-made tripel I've tried so far; it's not a super-fruity, over-the-top sweet tripel, which is what the other USA-brewed versions often come off as; the brewer here didn't panic and toss in a bunch of candi sugar at the last second to be safe; Defiant's tripel has a very wide range of smell and taste notes, and the tart white wine/sour grapes playing off a good banana-like sweetness are my favorites.

thanks to @TongoRad for this one -- and I must say, if Defiant can brew a tripel this well, it makes me wonder what other goodies they might be brewing up

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Photo of seedyone
2.75/5  rDev -29.7%

04/15/14 From bottle. I usually like Belgians, particularly triples, as long as they're not so strong they come with an ambulance discount card.

Unfortunately this let me down...twice. At first it looked great. Texture creamy, lovely clear color but the first taste was of corn. A cross between a corn flake & a cold popcorn kernel with no salt (or yummy caramel a la Cracker Jacks).

Things went from bad to worse when I poured the dregs, with the yeast, into the last glass. It held half the bottle so the concentration should have been reasonable, but I guess it was just too 'wild' for me. I prefer those bready heady things from Unibroue & not the unruly sour. I finished it (I always do) but once was enough.

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Photo of Ego
3.85/5  rDev -1.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 5 | overall: 3.5

foam tastic, huge foam and this has been sitting in my cellar for some time, the head rises around a fist high and settles quickly, super pale yellow with tons of carbonation, very cloudy (no chance of meatballs), lacing is sloppy but apparent, this really glows, nice looking
glass of the suds

heavy deep farmhouse must, heavy grass, buttery bright dough with slight lemon tinge, definitely can sense the sweetness lying underneath, this smells big and strong without a note off, this really gets the juices flowing and I have been averse to Tripels generally for a long time

taste etc...
bright carbonation almost frisky, mild doughy flavor, mild bitterness, mild sugars, everything is right in the middle, decent musty flavor, no sense of the alcohol whatsoever, with the yeast added I get a better sour note that adds some complexity

very middle of the road, superb mouth feel and drink ability but the flavor is a bit lacking for me

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Photo of Johnny_Muir
4.4/5  rDev +12.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

I served this at the 2014 Asbury Park Beerfest. As such I sampled it prior to serving so I could get an idea of what to tell folks. Sample size was "2 ounces" with super heavy air quotes.

WHOAAAA!!! I thought my local NJ brewery River Horse made a nice tripel (they do). This thing is out of the park. I'm not gonna waste your time with notes and flavors and noses, just find this and drink it with friends and family.

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Photo of Max578
4.2/5  rDev +7.4%
look: 3.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

filled a growler at Westmere Beverage Center. 10.99 for a half gallon? yes please!

Pours a hazy golden with a finger and a half white head.

light fruits and yeast dominate the smell, with a malty finish. smell is simple and mouth watering.

taste is incredibly fruity and yeasty much like the smell. lemon, apple, with a peppery hint. a bit sour to finish. malts build as this warms

perfect amount of carbonation for this style. super light and dry mouthfeel, and goes down as smooth as they come. the nine percent alcohol is NOWHERE to be found.

overall, this is a great beer. super drinkable, and not overwhelming in any aspect. super smooth, could drink this all day, although the abv would sneak up quick. definitely would like to try more from these guys

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Photo of superspak
4.42/5  rDev +13%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

750 ml bottle into chalice, no bottle dating. Pours hazy golden amber color with a 1-2 finger dense white head with good retention, that reduces to a thin cap that lingers. Spotty soapy lacing clings on the glass, with a moderate amount of streaming carbonation. Aromas of big peach, pineapple, pear, apple, lemon, apricot, light banana, clove, pepper, wheat, honey, candi sugar, herbal, floral, light bubblegum, and yeast earthiness. Fantastic aromas with great complexity and balance of fruity/spicy yeast ester and malt notes; with great strength. Taste of big lemon, peach, pear, apple, apricot, pineapple, light banana, wheat, honey, clove, pepper, herbal, floral, candi sugar, light bubblegum, and yeast earthiness. Lingering notes of light fruits, lemon, peach, pineapple, wheat, honey, candi sugar, clove, herbal, floral, light bubblegum, and yeast earthiness on the finish for a good bit. Fantastic complexity and balance of fruity/spicy yeast esters and malt flavors; with a near perfect malt/yeast balance and zero cloying flavors after the finish. Medium-high carbonation and medium bodied; with a smooth, crisp, and lightly slick mouthfeel that is great. Alcohol is very well hidden with hardly any warming present after the finish. Overall this is an incredible tripel style! All around fantastic complexity and balance of fruity/spicy yeast and malt flavors; and very smooth and crisp to sip on for the high ABV. A top notch offering for the style, especially for being an American representation.

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Photo of MasterSki
3.77/5  rDev -3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Bottle shared by Jason I think. I'd never heard of this brewery before. Served in a snifter.

A - White foam settles to a thin cap, thicker collar, and minimal lacework. Transparent white peach-colored body with some suspended sediment visible; pour carefully.

S - Dry, spicy and peppery yeast, grains of paradise, light phenols, and perhaps a tad vinous as well; not sure of the age here. As it warms up the malt asserts itself a bit more, imparting stone fruits sweetness.

T - The taste is a tiny bit sweeter, although it's still quite heavy on the yeast, with notes of grains of paradise, clove, fruity esters, and so forth. There's a hint of bubblegum mixed in for good measure.

M - Pleasant carbonation, medium body, and a dry, grainy texture. Some alcohol warmth that isn't excessive for the style.

D - I appreciate the attenuated sweetness on this one, as I find most American Tripels to be sweet and cloying. I also didn't notice much in the way of wild yeast like some of the other reviewers note; perhaps it's a batch-to-batch issue. Good, but not great.

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Photo of Phyl21ca
3.76/5  rDev -3.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Bottle: Poured a bright slightly hazy yellow color ale with a rather large white foamy head with good retention and minimal lacing. Aroma of fruity ester with sweet candy notes is quite nice. Taste is a good mix between some fruity ester with candy-like residual sugar with medium Belgian style malt backbone. Body is about average with medium carbonation and no apparent alcohol. More fruity then I was expecting but very well enjoyable nonetheless.

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Photo of farrago
4.44/5  rDev +13.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Thin, initially fluffy head of white tiny bubbles, the final thin surface coating continually renewed, the lacing forms a solid sheet on the glass side but no stickiness, just slides down into the liquid. Pleasing light haze to the bright yellow hued liquid, warm sort of opacity, strong beads of thicker bubbles percolate throughout. The nose has an unassuming sturdiness, tightly weaves together the tart orange citrus, yeast, clove, honey, floral water, peach to apricot to fig fruit, too clean for real earthiness, pinch of white pepper, for all its freshness has a syrupy texture in your nostrils, decent lift for its heft. Medium-bodied, somewhat hyper carbonation, nowhere near excessively foamy but makes it harder for the flavors to settle in. Clove, nutmeg, cardamom, then a blast of lemon, blood orange and grapefruit, great cut without being too dry nor puckering. The yeastiness is fresh and fuels a country bread to baguette character. Yes, there is a bit of banana and bubblegum there but really there’s a lot more basic apricot, peach, pineapple, green apple fruit. Honey much lower, much higher florality. Gives you the textbook array of the style while maintaining a clean profile which increases drinkability. A good food beer.

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Photo of Bierman9
4.38/5  rDev +12%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Bought this 750ml bottle last week in West Milford NJ and popped it last eve, after a hard day of work and a good bike ride...

After a struggle with the cork, I poured some into a small tulip. It was a bright, yellow-golden color, with a bit of haziness. There was plentiful fine carbo swirling about, and the head was a creamy, smooth layer of white foam. Lots of weblike lacing was left behind. Aroma was enticing, with tropical fruit and a doughy character present. It was quite easy going down, with a medium+ body and a solid smoothness.

Lightly sweet in taste, it had a touch of toastiness to it. Then came some fruit action, with suggestions of mango, pear and green apple mixed in with a hint of honey. The finish is rather dry, and it is there that it became somewhat spicy and peppery.

A bit on the pricy side for frequent consumption, but a damn good Tripel, in my opinion. Prosit!!

4.4/5 rDev +13.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5


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Photo of flagmantho
4.08/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Poured from 750mL corked & caged bottle into a tulip.

Appearance: beautiful light-gold hue with a nice haze that gives the body a matte finish. There's a strong effervescence and three fingers of creamy white foam atop. Lovely.

Smell: sweet aroma of light malt and hints of orchard fruit. Basic, but appealing.

Taste: sweet malt with a mild fruity character which accents the malt. There's also a floral character to this beer which is interesting. Alcohol is a bit on the hot side, but it's not harsh or anything. Bitterness is perhaps high for a tripel, but it's smooth and welcome here. Pretty tasty, if a bit hot on the alcohol.

Mouthfeel: medium body with a huge carbonation. Creaminess is massive and mouth-filling. I like it a great deal.

Overall: this is a very good and satisfying tripel, although a little more fruitiness and a little less alcohol in the flavor would be awesome.

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Photo of jtmartino
4.62/5  rDev +18.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Pours a beautiful pale golden color with a healthy microbubble head showcasing the bottle conditioning.

Smell is bready with some citrus, spicy hop and funk. Did not realize this beer had some wild yeast in it.

Taste is lighter than I had expected. Bready wih some citrus and a hoppy bite. Hides the alcohol well, and finishes with a light funkiness that is actually pretty delicious.

Mouthfeel is excellent...well carbonated and a little thickness that comes from the alcohol.

Overall this is a great beer. Lighter than other Belgians, almost like a beer de garde with the wild yeast funk. Definitely worth checking out.

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Photo of BeerLover99
3.95/5  rDev +1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A: cloudy/bubbly straw, trace head,

S: yeast, mild citrus, hint of spices

T: yeast, orange peel, floral, mild sour/bitter
semi-dry finish

M: med/light body, big tongue pricky
bubbly mouth, semi-dry mouth

O: My 1st Defiant offering.
Love Tripels and Belgian style
beers, but this seems a little too
light in the mouth/body.
Great newbie to BEL beer offering.


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Photo of Gavage
4.05/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Appearance: slightly hazy golden yellow color with a short one finger head that breaks apart immediately.

Smell: fruits, yeast, and some earthiness rise from the glass and into the nose.

Taste: nice malt profile here. Golden apples, pears, honey, lemon zest, pepper, and a it of yeast flavor come through the most. The bitterness is nicely balancing and not overpowering. Alcohol is warming but well hidden.

Mouthfeel: medium bodied beer. Crisp from start to finish. Aftertaste is long as the fruitiness and spicy yeast linger on the tongue for a while.

Overall: this beer does a nice job reflecting the style. Very pleasant and enjoyable, but it is a slow sipping beer that can creep up on you as the alcohol is barely noticeable.

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Photo of SFLpunk
3.65/5  rDev -6.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Thanks to Ralphs66 for this bottle! $11 price tag. 750mL brown glass cork & cage, no date.

Pours a pale, hazy orange with 1 finger of bright white head that leaves lots of spotting.

Let's discuss the nose, shall we? First whiff tells me this beer has wild yeast in it. It's infected, and other BA notes confirm this. But the question is, is it SUPPOSED to be infected? Lots of tropical fruits, mangos and papayas, blend with bitter orange and juicy sour lemon. A suggestion of plantain too.

Palate is tart for sure, but not full on soured. The mid palate goes a little watery which makes me think question again if this was intentionally funked. Sour tropical fruits and citrus give way to banana meringue and custard, some light grain notes and finishes off with a touch of pine board.

Notes: Well, I don't rightly know what to say about this, not knowing if it's supposed to be funky. If it is, then it's pretty good - if it's not then I'd really like to try a clean bottle please!

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Photo of Jwale73
4.05/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

750ml corked and caged bottle picked up in March during the 2011 East Coast Instructor's Seminar. Served in a white wine glass. Pours a hazy, golden orange with a loose, bright white half inch head that quickly dissipates into a broken skim. Nose expresses light, fruity esters (apricots, citrus, tropical fruit), a hint of funk and trace of rind. Taste consistent with nose; however, the impression is that this beer is a bit more delicate than your average tripel (which is not a bad thing). There is also a slight citric acid presence throughout that adds a pleasant balance and brightness to the flavors. Mouthfeel is light-medium (but closer to light), with an even, mild carbonation and a trace of acidity. All and all, this is a solid and quite drinkable tripel. Much more delicate, although no less complex, than most examples of the style I have tried, with an exceptionally well-hidden abv and less of the sweet and cloying character you tend to encounter. Well worth your time if you have the opportunity to sample this one.

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Photo of thedoubler55
4.12/5  rDev +5.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A- A dark hazy orange almost dark brown, leaves about two fingers of head that leaves some nice lacing around the glass as you sip away.

S- Citrus and lemon, a bit of honey, and spice, wild Tripel

T- Alcohol is hidden on this one, a bit of bitterness up front, slight taste of sweet fruits and honey.

M- Good amount of carbonation, medium bodied.

Drinkability - Not a bad beer, had this one on poker night was not dissappointed. Would definitely have it again. Perfect balance for a Tripel.

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Photo of OliverTweek
3.38/5  rDev -13.6%
look: 2.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Appearance: Golden Brown, a little lighter than most amber Belgium beers. When held up to the light, it turns a nice orange/red color. The bits of yeast floating in the beer isn't nearly as appetizing as the label makes it seem, but they are barely noticeable when drinking.

Smell: A rich, summery smell, with hints of flowers. Very sweet, and to those that don't like this style of ale, might be too much. I for one however, found it quite pleasant. Finds the perfect balance between fragrant and overpowering. Almost bread like, but not the stale-bread smell many lower classed beers occasionally have.

Taste: Has many of the same characteristics that the smell displays. Has a surpassingly earthy taste, that almost seems to vary from sip to sip. The flower qualities of the smell are still there, but not as much as the odor would suggest. The sweetness is almost desert like, if I didn't know better I'd say is white-chocolate like, not to mention fruitish hints such as orange or banana. The alcohol is more present than one would think from a beer like this.

Mouthfeel: As said before, the alcohol is slightly overpowering. The carbonation is milder than other beers, but fits the light style Defiant is going for.

Other/Overall: A good beer. I think the yeast floating in it is a turn off, but doesn't affect the taste enough to comment on. These are my favorite types of beers, but this one is sort of run of the mill. I enjoyed it, but it wasn't as memorable as I would have liked.

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Photo of womencantsail
3.93/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Bottle shared by Tim.

A: The pour is a clear golden color with a short-lived white head.

S: A very fruity aroma. Lots of pears, apples, bananas, and even some lemon zest. A nice sweet malt and sugar character and there is just a hint of tartness to it.

T: Sweet for the most part, but there is a hint of tart fruit. Apple, banana, pear, orange peel, and lemon are again present and there is a light floral note to the beer.

M: Somewhat light in body for such a big beer, but I'm not complaining. Medium in carbonation.

O: Despite being a 9% beer, this was really easy to drink and fairly light.

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Photo of r0nyn
3.68/5  rDev -5.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a corked and caged bottle into my Chimay chalice. Shared with a fellow beer lover.

Pours a cloudy yellow gold with seriously sticky lacing. Big off-white head that recedes gradually. Particles of yeast can been seen suspended in the liquid. Smell is mildly sweet with a lot of the advertised brewer's yeast and not very much else. Maybe a little bit of clove and spice at the end. Doesn't have that fruity bouquet I get out of most tripels.

Taste is full of that brewer's yeast and lots of it. Little hint of some funky sourness, but it goes away quickly. Subtle nuances of banana and a very slight bubblegum zing. Tiny bit of fruitiness makes an appearance on the palate after the beer has washed over. Lightly bitter on the back end, with some bready notes. Alcohol is mildly detectable at this point as a fleeting boozy warmth. Mouthfeel is effevescent, with a slick feel. Finish is very drying with a light crispness and medium body.

Drinkability is pretty good. Defiant really has crafted a quality brew here right in my back yard. I think I've definitely been spoiled with regards to tripels, because their take on the style isn't as good as some of the others I've sampled, but this is by no means a knock on this beer. It's a solid, drinkable Belgian style ale that I wouldn't mind having again.

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Photo of bigfnjoe
3.93/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Corked and caged bottle into a wine glass.

A- pours a very cloudy orangeish yellow with a one finger white head. The lacing is fantastic

S- the nose is a lot of Belgian yeast, and I'm getting a little bit of banana in there as well

T- oh my. Really flavorful, with lots of Belgian yeast, orange peel, banana coming to the forefront.

M- it's pretty thick

D- very rich beer, and a little boozy...a good example of a tripel

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Photo of Teleweizen2
4.33/5  rDev +10.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

From notes.

A - pours a bright glowing clear pale straw color. A puffy fingers worth of white foam develops on top. Good lacing.

S - big aroma. bready malts. Belgian yeast is dominate. Hints of clove, white pepper, and fruit notes like pear, orange, and lemon.

T - very dry on the palate. Tons of yeast flavors. Mostly notes of fruit like pear and citrus fruits as well as a spicy balance.

M - a soft, light body and a fairly high efervesence.

D - no hint of alcohol heat. Insanely drinkable for such a strong beer.

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Photo of brandnew711
4.05/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This beer is exceptional. Being from the town this beer is brewed in, I can tell you it is well received in the area. Several restaurants in the area feature it on their menu. For such a strong beer it is relatively drinkable. It goes great with dinner. Overall a solid beer and the staple of Defiant's brewery.

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Photo of brentk56
4.06/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Appearance: Pours a clear golden color with a massive head; the head retains well and leaves sheets of lace

Smell: Pale malt with a floral, grassy hop character; hints of bubblegum and thyme

Taste: Fruity elements lead off the flavor parade, with banana, apple, pear and lemongrass tones; bu mid-palate, grassy hops and herbal spices (white pepper, thyme and coriander) add balance; after the swallow, hints of bubblegum and candi sugar add some sweetness and a slight hint of alcohol appears in the finish

Mouthfeel: Medium body with moderate to high carbonation

Drinkability: Criticism by other reviewers that this is not to style are not unreasonable; call is a Saison or a BSPA if you prefer, but I really like the complexity and subtle flavor elements that this beer displays

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Belgian Tripel from The Defiant Brewing Company
87 out of 100 based on 48 ratings.