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Dark Horse Sapient Trip Ale - Dark Horse Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Dark Horse Sapient Trip AleDark Horse Sapient Trip Ale

Educational use only; do not reuse.

341 Reviews
no score

(Send Samples)
Reviews: 341
Hads: 815
Avg: 3.66
pDev: 20.77%
Wants: 19
Gots: 89 | FT: 1
Brewed by:
Dark Horse Brewing Company visit their website
Michigan, United States

Style | ABV
Tripel |  9.50% ABV

Availability: Spring

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: putnam on 04-20-2004

No notes at this time.
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters
Reviews: 341 | Hads: 815
Photo of OtherShoe2
3.57/5  rDev -2.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Pours medium orange, a bit dull, with a white foam head. Some retention, some decent lace. Whoops, looks like this one is bottle conditioned, as my final pour put a bunch of yeast floaties in the glass.

Digging deep for aroma. Mild, but there. Tropical fruit and some yeasty funk.

Flavor up front is tropical fruit, funk, booze, and bitterness. Then -- gone to rind bitter. Failure of flavor to stay is a minus, and a big one.

Fuller bodied, nice carbonation.

OK attempt. Flawed, but what works...works well. Worth a try.

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Photo of TastyAdventure
3.37/5  rDev -7.9%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3

Appearance- Thin Head, light brown, red tinted, cloudy.

Smell - Pretty great. alcohol, a little grapefruit, is is that nutmeg? and some spice.

Taste - in the front, sweet Nutmeg? followed by alcohol, mild hops, and then strong alcohol on the back end.

Mouthfeel - Low carbonation, and ...average mouthfeel.

Overall - This was my first Dark Horse beer. I know they are rated highly, but I would say that if you want a triple, get another brand. Nothing special here.

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Photo of SerialTicker
3.78/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Appearance: Pours a very murky orange color ... TONS of sediment. No head, pretty much no lacing. About what's expected of a tripel.

Smell: A lot of grapey smells. Secondary aromas consist of alcohol and malts, and maybe a touch of bananas as well.

Taste/feel: Wow. The alcohol's not shy in this beer, as it hits me hard up front and on the finish. Initial taste is sweet with the fruits, and the finish is a bit bitter with some malts and the alcohol I mentioned. The feel is somewhat thin at first, but it thickens up a bit if you leave it on your tongue.

Overall, a very "different" tripel, and I love that. I'm used to the typical banana and clove flavors (to the point where I've often had some trouble deciphering between a Dunkelweizen and a Tripel), so this is a welcome change. The bit of tartness is also nice ... a wonderfully fruity, tasty beer.

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Photo of MickeyBeer
3.94/5  rDev +7.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A- Pours a cloudy golden, orange color with a considerable amount of sediment throughout. About one finger of white head.

S- Smell was sweet and malty. Notes of honey and citrus.

T- Taste was very malty and sweet. Kind of reminds me of a hefeweizen with a wheaty and citrusy taste. At 9.5% abv, alcohol is pretty well covered by the sweet malts, but is still somewhat present in the taste.

M- Mouthfeel is medium with a somewhat dry finish.

O- This is a deliciously malty beer that I thoroughly enjoyed. I am more of an IPA/Imperial Stout guy, but this beer could certainly satiate my occasional thirst for something sweeter and maltier.

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Photo of Mavigo
3.85/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Having this in my kitchen, served in a snifter.

A: pours a golden honey orange color with not much head but with a bit of off white lacing.

S: smells sweet like honey, with wheat and grains, malt, hops, spices

T: tastes sweet, yeast, honey, sugar, hops, malts, bit of booze taste at the finish.

M: Medium bodied with medium carbonation, quite smooth for the ABV, could hardly guess it's 10% until it's too late.

O: Overall it quite good, smooth, mellow. Has good texture, not too pricey, local, I'd recommend it.

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Photo of metter98
3.58/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A: The beer is hazy dark golden yellow in color and has lots of fine yeast particles floating in suspension along with a light amount of visible carbonation. It poured with some small patches of bubbles on the surface and a thin collar around the edge of the glass.
S: The smell has aromas of fruity esters (bananas seem to stand out in particular) and Belgian yeast along with some hints of candi sugar.
T: The taste is similar to the smell and has some initial notes of malty sweetness along with hints of clove towards the finish.
M: It feels a little more than medium-bodied and very smooth on the palate with a moderate amount of carbonation. The beer definitely coats your mouth quite well. No dryness is perceptible.
O: The beer definitely tastes strong but for the most part the alcohol is well masked from the taste. It's not very complex but is a pretty good American representation of a Belgian style.

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Photo of SometimesIfart
2.87/5  rDev -21.6%
look: 4 | smell: 2 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

A - Pours amber with a very slight orange tint. Finger and a half worth of long lasting head. Leaves decent lacing.

S - Adjunct, medium standard malt. Uhhhh....What?

T - Very slight standard adjunct up front, followed by a decent amount of malt, minimal pine, slight bubblegum.

M - Low carbonation with a medium body

O - Overall, At 9.5% this beer is an easy drinking killer, Although it tastes nothing as I had expected. Not a great craft brew honestly, But I'd have it again.

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Photo of mvanaskie13
3.73/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured into a chalice, color is gold to copper; head is white and frothy upfrongt but dissipates to a ring.

Smell is boozy, light pilsner malt, hint of hop citrus.

Taste is almost sweet, but balanced by the esters, pilsner malt exists but it finishes pretty dry.

Mouthfeel is a little dry but not cloying or sharp.

Overall, a tasty triple, a touch less boozy smell and taste could help it quite a bit

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Photo of Greywulfken
4.18/5  rDev +14.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

A: Apricot haze body with a one-finger head

S: some pale fruit and malt; slight yeat aromas

T: not quite what I expect in a triple, but delicious nonetheless: orchard fruits and apricots, chewy caramel malt

M: extremely smooth and silky - I drank it at slightly below room temp, and it was slick, easy-drinking nectar

O: I really liked this beer, but it had as much in common with some strong ales I've had as it did a tripel - fruity orchard flavors, but also savory, earthy, and musky - had a chewy consistency, whereas I think of tripels being a little more soft and fuzzy. Again, this was a great beer. I suspect it may be better than the reviews its getting simply because it is a little "off" as a tripel.

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Photo of Imperial_Sapient_Groat
4.12/5  rDev +12.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A- Light orange with very little white head that dissipates quickly with a thin lacing on the glass.

S - Belgian tripel of a lot of bready yeast over everything else, very distinct banana in the background

T- Big Belgian yeast flavor that covers up the alcohol pretty damn well, a little bit of sweetness, some fruit and clove in the background

M- Pretty full bodied for a tripel, medium to low carbonation, but enough to get by

O- Overall, im from Marhsall, Home of the Dark Horse, and this is one of my my favorite regular beers, it is no Westmalle, but is a fantastic american version of a tripel, and a Dark Horse staple that means spring has arrived and Scotty must leave

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Photo of deadonhisfeet
3.58/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a bottle into a New Belgium snifter. The pour is dark orange and slightly hazy. Nice 2 fingers of head with decent retention and nice lacing, but relatively low carbonation and very little, if any, effervescence. Nose is faint but has some nice fruity esters (bananas and apricots) and a little bit if spiciness.

Full body and nice creamy feel. Lots of nice, sweet, fruity flavors reminiscent of pears and oranges. The sweetness is complemented by mild hoppy bitterness. I don't think the sweet and bitter flavors in this beer are as well married as they are in finer tripels, and the result is a bit medicinal. The finish is fairly dry with a warming bit of alcohol, but for the most part the alcohol is well-hidden. I don't get enough fruitiness or spiciness to suit my palate and the finish is a bit disappointing.

I am not a huge fan of tripels, but overall I think this is a nice example of the style and a fine part of Dark Horse's stable. For big fans of the style or fans of this brewery only. There are far better tripels out there if you're just starting to explore.

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Photo of n2185
2.89/5  rDev -21%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

A: Pours a hazy orange-gold with a finger of white head that recedes into a thin ring with little lacing.

S: Candy sugar on the nose with some Belgian spice notes and a dry, yeasty finish.

T: Spices and candy sugar hit up front followed by some slight fruitiness and a chalky yeast finish. Light alcohol presence as well.

M: Medium body and carbonation, this beer isn't cloyingly sweet, but is still a bit thick and under-carbonated for the style.

O: Not a terrible tripel, but not very good, either. It lacks complexity and attenuation and is a bit too boozy as well.

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Photo of beer2day
4.13/5  rDev +12.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Hazy lemon gold pour, just enough yellow in it to be appropriate. Dense 1 finger cap of white foam. Decent retention and laces nicely.

Nose is just what you would expect. Cloves, lemon, yeast, bread malt. Pleasant and no surprises.

Flavor is a good combination of clove, banana, and lemon zest. Fairly substantial tart sourness in the finish - lip puckeringly sour.

Feel is about right for the style. Gets a bit cloying with the sour flavor, but not annoyingly so.

A decent sipper.

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Photo of smakawhat
2.86/5  rDev -21.9%
look: 2.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

Poured from the bottle into a tulip glass.

A muddy dark brown orange body, lots of yeast chunks, some fast rising thin carbonation of white bubbles. No head produced on this barely at all, thin tan collar. For a tripel pretty unimpressive.

Nose is rather interesting. Lots of sweet candy, and a big yeasty thick punch. Hints of mint and lemon grass, and melon sort of mango fruit. Some really nice qualities here. Smells inviting.

Taste though is incredibly, "flat". Palate has a very weak feel, not carrying any big malt or sweetness forward. Wet. Finish is incredibly tasteless and watery. Mild bitterness akin to a dead pale ale.

Overall this tripel is not delivering, there's no body, no malt sweetness, no candy tasting goodness, even the wonderful bouquet on this is not coming out in the palate. Too bad because it smells really good.

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Photo of Duff27
2.91/5  rDev -20.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

A- Half inch pillowy white head on a dull dark golden colored body. Yeast sediment aplenty. above average head retention with good lacing.

S- Belgian yeast esters, cloves...nothing that screams "delicious!" though.

T- Kind of a confused, muddled taste. Tries to have that crisp Belgian yeast snap at the tail end of each sip but comes across 'off'...leaves an unpleasant taste in my mouth. Drinks at it's stated ABV.

M- Heavier mouthfeel for the style. Low, smooth carbonation.

D/O- Nothing jumped out at me. I had thoughts of drainpouring but I finished it. Pass on this one, there are better Tripels out there.

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Photo of Jesse13713
1.85/5  rDev -49.5%
look: 2 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 1.5 | overall: 1.5

Poured into a Hoppin' Frog snifter.

Appearance - Mark darker than expected. A hazy wind of carbonation and wheat brown/yellow hues. Decent lacing without much of a head. Very earthy looking.

Smell - Underwhelming to say the least. Light banana and belgian yeast. No hint of spice, and a total lack of complexity or body.

Taste - A very bland and honestly quite boring tripel. Everything about this beer is tame. Masked bananas, a shave of citrus peel, rotten toffee, and an awkward funky malt make for a less than impressive beer.

Mouthfeel and Drinkability - Just sort of unpleasant in the mouth. Quite bland and simple. The ABV is completely hidden under the wheat malt. I like Dark Horse as a brewery, but this one just really didn't do anything for me - compared to other dark horse beers as well as tripels.

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Photo of deedric
3.72/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Came from a tap, head was fine and lingered - nice lacing. Golden color, slightly cloudy. Smells of apricots, malt, some spice. Tastes of biscuit, banana. Not a bad mouthfee - crisp came to mind. Overall a nice beverage, not really what I have learned to expect from a triple - but quite drinkable.

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Photo of Beer_Runner
3.86/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 2.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

No enjoy by date.
Slow pour into a standard pint glass.
8.5% and aged 6 months.

A: Man, this brew is ugly. It's so ugly I can't stop looking at it. It is fasinatingly ugly. Mezmerizingly ugly.
It is a dark copper and very cloudy with a lot, and I mean a lot, of brown particles floating around. And, there are no carbon bubbles. There was a very thin head that disapated quickly.

S: The aroma has a light, sweet, sugary malt scent. It mixes with some fruity hops that is sort of bubblegum-like.

M: It has a meduim to slightly heavy body (probably from all those particles) and very little carbonation. And has a nice, clean finish.

T: It begins with a malt sweetness and a touch of banana. There is a little hop bite and a touch of sourness. This mixes with sometning like baked apple with cinamon.

O: This beer is an adventure. It is novel. It is cool. A beer definetly worth experiencing, even if it is just to say "been there, done that." This is really what craft brewing is about: diversity. The boldness to put something different out there. Something that is really one of a kind. This beer may not please everyone, but it is definetly worth the expereince.

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Photo of horshack7
3.3/5  rDev -9.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: Poured into a goblet is a hazy amber with a thin white head.

Aroma: Toffee, figs, dark fruits, raisins. Minor breadiness in the nose with touch of clove and some banana in the back.

Taste: Raisins, figs sweet caramelized sugar. Toffee, bready malts, figs light pumpkin spice. The mouthfeel is smooth with a light buttery texture.

Notes: Certainly not that sweet as most tripels but it's still drinkable. Cheers.

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Photo of Cylinsier
3.33/5  rDev -9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

12 oz.

Pours a ruddy amber color, cloudy with some particles of yeast, thin white head retains as a lacing.

Smells of strawberries, apples and buttered bread.

Tastes bready with some mild fruit tartness and a hint of brown sugar. Something resembling hop in the aftertaste.

Medium to full body with soft carbonation.

Not bad, but not a great tripple. Drinkable enough, and I will enjoy it, but probably wouldn't seek it out again. The taste in particular is a little bland.

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Photo of sjverla
3.77/5  rDev +3%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Nose: Lots of tropical fruit. Passion fruit and red grapes. Very juicy. Bready. Just a touch spicy.

Appearance: No head. Hazy spun-gold with hints of ruby. Cloudy with a few floaters.

Taste: Cloves at first. Massively fruity. Kiwi and mango dominate. A really nice wild-type (brett?) funk that's not in a lot of many Belgian-type beers made in America.

Overall: Good flavor. I was disappointed at first, but it's grown on me. The dry, yeasty finish helps. This has been an inconsistent six-pack though. Flavors and haze have fluctuated.

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Photo of ZAP
4.25/5  rDev +16.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

(edit 2011-Getting a tuity fruity gum like aroma..a lot of banana evident..taste is a little thinner than I expected but i'll stand by the original review for the most part)

Original 6-6-2007
8.5% ABV according to their website.

A-hazy bright orange/yellow....

S-Overripe mashed banana's...sweet juicy fruits (peaches, papaya, mandarin oranges)..also some B.O. like funky yeastiness...

T-Same as the nose but stronger on the juciy sweet fruits....add in a little pineapple and mango to the fruit cocktail mix...has a little bubble gum in it as well....light clovyness on the finish really completes the deal nicely. Hell of a nice flavor to this.

M-Medium to full bodied...medium to highly carbonated....feels right

D-What a nice surprise....great tasting triple with a lot of sweet fruity flavors....just enough clove on the finish to add some complexity...definitely worth buying....only thing I don't care for is the slight B.O. yeastiness aroma...

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Photo of JTSbeerislife
3.2/5  rDev -12.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

12 oz bottle, no date on bottle, purchased 8/2011, and well stored in temperature controlled conditions.

Poured into a Duvel Signature Tulip

Pours a rather thin but lively head which quickly dissipates into a thin film.
Very cloudy, orange/amber color, with lots of yeast floating around, and yes I did decant the bottle.

Lots of yeast and citrus (not hoppy) smells in the aroma

Very crisp entry on the palate of citrus flavors, lemon and orange, some pleasant yeast. A little malt comes out after the ale warms. Good medium mouth feel and noticeable carbonation.

An acceptable finish of lingering citrus and yeast.

Really not much going on here with this ale. An acceptable drink, but that’s about it. Needs a better yeast strain that actually resembles a Belgium ale not orange juice.
This ale does not really excite in any way, pretty ordinary compared to what’s on the market these days.
I cannot really recommend this one.

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Photo of CrellMoset
3.82/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A bottle from a trade that came and went a long time ago. Poured in to a tulip.

Appearance: Pours an unusually dark, turgid, bronzed gold, hazy without any actual particulates being noticeable. A moderate pour yields about half a finger of foamy fuzzy white head that fades down relatively quickly, though gentle swirls reveal plenty of wispy side stickage, and a persistent and dense collar suggests some good retention, too.

Aroma: Very juicy, with tons of raw sugar and fruit notes wafting up easily. Reminiscent at times of both pineapple juice and guava juice, a slight spicy underpinning keeps this one interesting.

Taste: Mature and perhaps a little oxidized, but still with plenty of goodness going on here. Not quite as sweet as it smelled, and perhaps a little fruitier than I was expecting, this one showcases a really nice fruit bouquet, with a slew of heavier citrus notes, lots of tropical notes (guava, mango, pineapple), and a few spicy, green esters. Hints of honey and clove.

Mouthfeel: Heavy and low on the carbonation side of things, which isn't the best combination, but at the same time it's not that sweet so it never comes across as syrupy or cloying.

Drinkability: Not the best tripel, not even the best out of Michigan I've had recently ... but a solid one nonetheless, and if you like yours on the fruitier side of things, it's worth a try. Then again, a lot of this could be the age on this bottle (it's at least three years old), so who knows. Worth a try either way, though I wouldn't imagine it being a go-to for me, if I had the opportunity to make it as much.

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Photo of jdhilt
3.94/5  rDev +7.7%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a two-finger off-white head that fades quickly to a thin layer leaving some lace. Hazy light amber color, some yeast left in bottle. Light-medium carbonation and medium bodied. Light fruity nose and flavor is fruit and caramel. Higher ABV is hidden. $2.49 for a 12oz bottle from Julio’s Liquors Westborough, Ma.

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Dark Horse Sapient Trip Ale from Dark Horse Brewing Company
83 out of 100 based on 341 ratings.