Trade Winds Tripel - The Bruery

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Trade Winds TripelTrade Winds Tripel

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very good

1,028 Ratings
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Ratings: 1,028
Reviews: 331
rAvg: 3.92
pDev: 9.69%
Wants: 47
Gots: 141 | FT: 3
Brewed by:
The Bruery visit their website
California, United States

Style | ABV
Tripel |  8.10% ABV

Availability: Summer

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: Bitterbill on 05-25-2008

Our Summer seasonal, Trade Winds Tripel is a Belgian-style Golden Ale with a Southeast Asian twist. Instead of using candi sugar (typical for such a beer), we use rice in the mash to lighten the body and increase the gravity, and spice with Thai Basil. The result is an aromatic, digestible and complex beer made for a lazy summer evening.

25 IBU
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 1,028 | Reviews: 331
Reviews by TheLiterati:
Photo of TheLiterati
3.43/5  rDev -12.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Beers from The Bruery tend to be "big" in every sense of the word - from the bottling to the composition and taste, they seem to do nothing "small."

This beer is no exception: pours a deep, cloudy golden amber with a thick, sturdy off-white head. Aroma is subtle, nutty.

Taste and mouthfeel are reminiscent of champagne, minus the sugar. Smooth and lightly effervescent, this beer is bittersweet, foamy and frothy with a undertones of citrus and a mild woodiness.

Still, there is something slightly off-putting about this beer. It's drinkable enough, but I'm not sure I'll make it a "regular."

More User Reviews:
Photo of MadScientist
4.44/5  rDev +13.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.5

A: A slightly hazy orange hued, medium amber. The rocky white head is long lasting and enthusiastic.

S: Medium-high esters orange and a moderate basil dominate the aroma. Moderately-light pepper and light clove phenols with a light malt sweetness.

T: There is an orange to peach like fruitiness with a pepper bite and moderate bitterness. A light malt and honey-like sweetness come out in the middle with an off-dry finish and a little hot. There is a moderately-light basil flavor and moderate spiciness. The balance is towards the bitter an aftertaste of honey and hops bitterness.

M: Moderate bodied with a moderately-high carbonation. There is a chile pepper like bit in the back of the throat. Kind of viscous but the high carbonation gives the impression of a lighter body. Moderate alcohol warmth, no creaminess and a light astringency.

O: This review was from my notes with no overall impression.

Photo of orbitalr0x
4/5  rDev +2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Lots of carbonation upon opening. Hazy orange/yellow with an inch of bubbly white head. Splotchy lacing on the glass. Aromas of sun drenched grains, fruit and spice. The basil is subtle but noticeable here as well.

Very fruity upfront with lots of fast moving carbonation and a spicy yeast kick. The basil comes through nicely in the flavor with a green herbal integration. Moves through with a decent amount of sweetness that ends with spiciness on the finish.

Medium bodied and smooth with plenty of carbonation that works for the beer and the style. Overall, an interesting twist on the tripel. I was expecting a little more "wow" factor in the flavor, but other than that it was a solid drink.

Photo of Billolick
4.33/5  rDev +10.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Belgian style bomber bottle, I like the oversized cap. Pours glowing apricot, with lots of bubbles rising and lifting an initially huge off white head, that sticks around forever and slowly turns to merainge. Then leaves nice strands of lace and a much better then average collar of the thick stuff. It emits a hearty sniff of mint, pepper and Belgian leaning yeast. Quite enjoyable and tasty take on a favorite style. Phenolic and minty, with additional notes of honey, pepper, and even the advertized thai basil lending a complexity enhancing addition to the mix. Drys out nicely in the finish. 8% nowhere to be found.Well done, refreshing and intriguing. I really enjoyed this one. Go get some and enjoy a finely crafted American take on a classic style.

Photo of tigg924
3.92/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Poured into a Chimay chalice

Appearance: 1.5 inch head, hazy, gold in color, high carbonation

Smell: apple, pear, funk, herbal--I guess that is the thai basil

Taste: apple, pear, funk, Belgian spices, herbal--I guess that is the thai basil

Mouthfeel: sweet with a touch of bitterness at the end, medium-light bodied with medium carbonation

Overall: A tasty tripel. I like the element of the thai basil. It adds a different element to the standard tripel that gives it some herbal components to it. One that I would go back to if I wanted the style because it stands out.

Photo of badbeer
3.74/5  rDev -4.6%
look: 5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Most amazing beer appearance in a long time. Golden color with awesome retention and the head stays firm and creamy. The surface of the head is cratered like the surface of the moon, very interesting. Floral, but also very earthy in the nose and some sort of spice (apparently basil). Taste has a creaminess to it, but still manages to be dry in the finish. Almost vanilla-like in the taste, with a bit of Cool-Whip, bits of grain, and a long, earthy taste. High carbonation and medium body. If not for a little bit of a metallic taste, I'd bump the taste score up another notch. Pretty good Tripel, and nice to have an American one that is nice and relatively dry.

Photo of Mora2000
4.42/5  rDev +12.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Big thanks to djrn2 for sending me this bottle.

The beer pours a hazy orange-amber color with a white head. Looks about like a tripel is supposed to look.

The aroma is outstanding. I get a load of wheat and Asian basil as well as some nice fruit notes. There is also a nice Belgian yeast aroma and some muddled spices.

The flavor is just as good if not better. I get a lot of wheat and lemons, along with some cherries. The yeast and basil are once again present and compliment the other flavors very well. The beer is somewhat dry and is very easy to drink.

Medium mouthfeel and medium carbonation. One of the best American-made tripels I have drank.

Photo of magictrokini
3.92/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Poured a cloudy orange-gold with a huge rocky white head that stuck around. Good lacing. Tropical fruit aroma with cider, some banana, and basil. Very carbonated, lighter mouthfeel. Big, bold fruity taste. Lots of apricots, peaches, strawberry, mango, passionfruit, and a melange of tropical fruit. Herbal background which is very sweet, presumably from the rice. Slightly sour bite in the finish, more tart fruit. The flavor was so big, it made the beer less drinkable, though. Its not necessarily a bad thing, but when it comes to trippels, I didn't expect such a big beer. Definitely find a friend to share the bottle with.

Photo of Franziskaner
4.09/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Brilliant golden hue and you can tell this is unfiltered. A half inch of tightly laced foam with robust carbonation throughout. A blend of rice and light Belgian candy sugar in the aroma. A brisk sweetness at the forefront is due to the Belgian yeast strain. The rice really adds a nice dryness quickly follows and really gives a nice spin to a Belgian triple.

Photo of pat61
4.5/5  rDev +14.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Very interesting herbal, spicy nose with Belgian yeasts, light malts, a slight funk and light fruits. The basil is up front and prominent. Pours brilliant peach tinted gold under a dense, finely bubbled 3” persistent, lacy white foam cap. The palate is lemony, herbal, spicy peach with caramel and biscuit notes – suggests an herbed peach cobbler transformed to foam. The carbonation is almost champagne like with a slight winey slickness. Medium body and carbonation.

Photo of dogfishandi
3.69/5  rDev -5.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

750ml bottle, fridge temp., snifter.

pours out with a huge head, more than half the glass, took awhile to disapate. lots of carbonation bubbles. billowy, rocky, soapy white head with some big, foamy bubbles. leaves some nice lacing. cloudy deep golden color.

smells like your pretty basic tripel at first, but the more it warms the more it takes on this funky, vegetal, herbal aroma, almost a bit meaty. brett and basil??

some pretty tart lemongrass like citrus and some sweet, almost candied grains. a bit of that vegetal, herbal funk comes through. slight meat, and a bit vineous. maybe some slight hints of rice. finishes tart and dry.

kind of coats the mouth. sweet, then tart and dry with a high amount of bitey carbonation.

a decent tripel, but there is some odd funk in there. wild yeast maybe? but i dont think this was brewed with any. the basil is hard to pick out, but i can see its impact with all the vegetal, herbal notes. i realized after i drank this that it is a summer seasonal and shouldve been consumed fresh, so ill have to give this another try. i applaud the bruery for making interesting, unique beers, but this one didnt really work that well for me.

Photo of ehammond1
3.78/5  rDev -3.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

On Tap

Churchill's Pub & Grille
San Marcos, CA

Light golden with a moderate sized near-white head that leaves significant lacing down the glass.

Aroma consists of bright citrus, bread, and grassy herbs.

The flavor is similar, with citrus, distinct Belgian style yeast, grass, and basil.

Medium bodied with moderate to high carbonation, though the Belgians (and Unibroue) still win here by a large margin.

Good tripel.

Photo of TKEbeerman
3.93/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Poured into my Delirium Tremens tulip, this brew pours an opaque "glowing" yellow orange with a giant fluffy head.

S: The aroma is dominate Thai Basil. Trade Winds does have all the spicy and fruitiness of a classic Tripel, however I would have liked to see more classic and less Thai.

T: I've never had Thai Basil, but I'm sure it's the culprit that's dominating the flavor here, and it's not a bad culprit either. Very herbally spicy. This beer is like herbal essence in my mouth.

MF: The mouthfeel here on this brew tends to thin out after the initial sip, and there is absolutely no malt backbone to this baby.

D: Even though the mouthfeel is lacking, this beer is still refreshing.

Photo of chinchill
3.38/5  rDev -13.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.25

From bottle to small snifter.
Pours with a creamy, durable head. The light colored body has a light haze. Excellent looks.
Aroma: bretty and fruity
Flavor: less bretty and fruity; lightly tart; lightly sweet too. {Note: I'm not a Brett fan}
Feel: near perfect, with smooth carbonation and a near medium body.
O: slight wild and distinctly flavored tripel.

Photo of glid02
4/5  rDev +2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Had this on-tap at Blue Palms in Hollywood, CA.

Pours a clear golden color with a one-finger, slightly off-white head. The head recedes into a thin pancake on top leaving decent lacing.

Smells of light fruits - pears and hints of bananas - and sweet Belgian candi sugar. A small amount of herbal aromas waft out every now and then.

Tastes similar to how it smells. Robust sugar-coated fruit flavors up front with herbal undertones. The ending is crisp and sweet.

Mouthfeel is good. It has a solid thickness with moderate carbonation.

Drinkability is good. I had no problem finishing my glass and could have another.

Overall this is a solid tripel but the flavors don't seem to meld as well as they do in the best examples. Still, it's well worth a shot.

Photo of ianjsullivan
3.85/5  rDev -1.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

ST: 750ml poured into a snifter. The bottle does not have a brewed on date or a fresh by date, but it does list the alcohol percentage.

A: Hazy burnished gold with a thick half-a-finger white rocking head, which has excellent retention.

S: Belgian yeast and candy, floral, slight basil, fruit.

T: Spicy basil, spice, floral notes, raisins, apple, biscuit, steamed rice. Slight alcohol warmth, a little fruit, and spice carry the finish.

M: Medium body and spicy, racy dry with plenty of crisp carbonation.

O: Great carbonation lifts this beer and gives it zing to match its racy spice. The rice, though present, does not add as much to this beer as the Thai basil. The aroma is good, but it does not fully uncover all the complex flavors luring within this beer. Fruit, malt, wheat, spice mix well in this beer, though the finish does have lots of spice with a slight sweetness.

Photo of Brenden
3.91/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This one is plaer than I expect for some reason, and I think it's just because I haven't had a tripel in so long. A nearly white head starts off very large and fluffy off a lovely and prolonged cascade effect, and it's one thick pillow before it settles down to nearly two fingers. It leaves very nice lacing down the glass. The cascade really keeps going the entire time I'm drinking this beer.
This is a pretty good, standard tripel aroma (albeit a little light) as far as the Belgian yeast evident in a lightly dusty note with some bubble gum sweetness. It's a little different with a distinctive herbal edge to it and something I couldn't quite place before I realized it was like basil leaf and then I noticed it was brewed with it. It takes a little off of the sweeter aspects toward the drier and obviously more herbal side. Alcohol is evident but not powerful.
The basil comes out in here as well, but the finer, more attenuated points are more strongly emphasized as well, making the flavor work a little better. Belgian yeast is evident with just a bit of candied sugar sweetness that isn't overdone, gentle spiciness and light fruits underneath the pale malts. Alcohol is well-masked here.
This body is interesting one, quite light but velvety smooth with a big filling creaminess. Carbonation is heavy but avoids spritziness and flows well.
This is an interesting take, but a good beer is a good beer. Any more basil would have thrown this way off, but I think The Bruery did a good job with keeping it level.

Photo of biboergosum
3.94/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

750ml bottle, 8.6% ABV. I see that there is another entry on here, specifying a 'Triple [sic] with Thai Basil'. Heh, stupid is as stupid does, I guess.

This beer pours a hazy, tarnished medium golden amber hue, with a teeming tower of puffy, tightly foamy, and proto-creamy ecru head, which leaves a few instances of sudsy wilted tulip lace around the glass as it slowly and evenly subsides.

It smells of sharp, peppery yeast right up front, with some crackery pale malt, sweet rice pudding, dry clove and banana chip essences, a spicy vegetal character that one might suspect is the basil, but without the typical anise notes (which, upon further investigation, is to be expected with the Thai varietal), and a soft, rising alcohol warmth. The taste is much less sweet - grainy pale malt, laid-back gritty yeast, white pepper, more savoury clove, bordering on coriander spice, faint dried banana, a further bit of red berry fruitiness, ethereal cooked rice, a reduced, let's just call it 'Thai basil' greenness, and the suggestion of a booziness that is tired of waiting, and would like nothing better than to get this party stAAArted!

The carbonation is big and frothy, like it just wants you to know it, the body a decent medium weight, and plainly smooth, nothing particularly special happening here, though nothing really interfering either. It finishes off-dry, the pale malt and its spare-room crashing rice guest doing well to carry on the cause, as the spice and herb contingent yawns and checks the little clocks on their little walls.

A nice way to divert my attention away from a style that I usually don't care to, well, care for. Different gravity-enhancers for starters, even if it is that darned rice adjunct, along with a neat, new to me (in beer, at least) herbal spiciness, and an elevated ABV, whose manifestation still seems duly stalled. Maybe it's stuck in its parents' basement, trying in vain to finish off that last level, or something.

Photo of VaRy
4.37/5  rDev +11.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Okay, so in all fairness this is a "Belgian Style Adjunct Ale", isn't it?

Pale, warm yellow with a just a hint of orange. Nice, long lasting head. Floral and spicy aroma, slightly hoppy, I sense more parsley than basil, certainly some puffed rice, and a bit of a fruity note, reminiscent of honeydew melon. The beer is rather highly carbonated, and would benefit from slightly lower than usual serving temperature, I'd say 40-45 degrees.

Overall, a good summer brew which works well with seafood dishes, salads and Asian flavors. Recommended.

Photo of GilGarp
4.02/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

750 mL bottle, capped. No date.

Served cool into my Watou glass, Trade Winds has a slightly hazy golden yellow-orange color. The head is thick but not as fine as many true Belgians. It settles quickly leaving chunky lace on the glass.

Aroma is immediately evident as I pry off the cap. It has great complexity and depth here. Lots of nice floral and spice. I was hoping the Thai basil would come through more in the aroma but I'm not getting it.

Flavor is where the basil is! Big peppery tripel with lemon citrus and basil herb. The pepper almost overwhelms the other flavors in the beer. I'm not sure if it a quality of the yeast or if they actually brewed with the spice but it's strong.

Mouthfeel is medium-light in body and full of carbonation.

This must be one of the best beers ever to be made with grains of rice. It is full of character and complexity. Best enjoyed cold though, I'm afraid.

Photo of strewthday
4.63/5  rDev +18.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Appearance (4.5): Awesome! Poured into a Duvel tulip glass. Orange-gold amber hue, slight haze. Huge head, almost chalk white. Great retention/lacing. Head dissipates and turns rocky, and I almost don’t want to drink it because it looks so good. Steady stream of bubbles from the bottom center of the glass continue to add to the head.

Smell (4): Vanilla, butterscotch, perfectly ripe tomatoes, Belgian yeast, slight ginger, lemon, basil, slight strawberry and banana. Slight herbal hop, immediately combated by the savory malt and yeast.

Taste/Mouth-feel (5): Strong vanilla, prickly esters, slight herbal/medicinal bitterness, mostly similar to the smell. The basil comes through just slightly, as do the butterscotch and tomato. Slightly salty, not a bad thing. Great viscosity, only just barely sticky. The carbonation pops and prickles just so to bring out the most delicate flavors, including cardamom and coriander. Honeysuckle and sandalwood in the finish.

Overall: Excellent! A very experimental example of the style. This one ventures just enough out of the box that it is exploratory, yet remains true to its roots and does not compromise any integrity for experimentation. Highly recommended for any fan of Belgian Strong Pale Ales and/or Tripels.

Pairs with any Asian style stir fry. Fermented foods, spicy fare, and nutty cheeses. Also, a good, fresh salad never hurts to bring out the earthy textures and tastes hidden within a beer.

Photo of Stigs
3.46/5  rDev -11.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

750ml bottle, served in Stone Levitation glasses

A - pours with a HUGE amount of fluffy sticky white foam, absolutely covers the glass with huge chunks. the beer is clear, gold in color.

S - large amounts of freshly chopped basil, mint, thyme...underneath is a light layer of yeast.

T - quite herbaceous following the nose with more basil and mint, some lightly tart lemon rind and green apples. finishes yeasty.

M - light body with sharp carbonation, finishes insanely dry and prickly.

D - well, not a Triple...really reminds me (I'd have trouble picking one out blindly) of Saison Du Buff. OK enough for a small serving but not much more.

Photo of Metalmonk
4.26/5  rDev +8.7%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

The Bruery + tripel + thai basil + rice? Curiosity killed this cat, time to bust it open.

This tripel knows what it's doing, looks-wise, that's for sure. Thick, fluffy head looks like a snow drift and holds up like styrofoam floating on water. Color is a peachy sunset color, hazy with a zillion bubbles dancing inside. It's so absolutely gorgeous, I can only award it a 5 and no less.

Aroma is subtly fruity, with a mineral earthiness, mild spice character and definite contributions from the Thai basil. The basil element is really pleasant, but it doesn't dominate in any novel kind of way. In fact, nothing's out of whack one way or the other. Just very well balanced, if a little on the unassuming side.

One sip and I'm completely enthralled. A few more and I know I love this beer. To say there's a "creamsicle" character gives some kind of low-rent impression, and that's not good enough for a beer of this class. Still, it's got definite orange and sweet cream elements, and the basil lends a green, herbal, exotic note to the beer. Elsewhere there are more traditional tripel characteristics, like dirty/earthy yeast notes, a vibrant sweet-spice/tropical-fruit melange, crisp/bright hops, and a subtle flare of warmth from the alcohol. It's complex, and I seem to have a slightly different impression with each sip, but, wow, is it well balanced. Not too dry, with the basil and orange zest staying longest in the finish.

Mouth is vibrant, buoyant, airy, well-carbonated but also plenty smooth.

Like most tripels, it's one to take slowly, but also one that is about as balanced and welcoming as any tripel I've ever had. Wowee...or should I say: "Choc-tee!"

Photo of cokes
3.53/5  rDev -9.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Turbid apricot hued, roiling with carbonation which feeds the huge, seemingly-neverending, off-white head. Lacing is superb.
It brings chardonnay and champagne on the nose, with a health sprinkling of pepper. A large hunk of Rock candy is also in play. Bits of dried apricot and peach arrive as it warms. Basil isn't specifically noticed, but possibly in the mix if one is sniffing for it.
The rice is noticed immediately with it's lightly sweet crispiness. It light and thin, and seemingly not capable of balancing what comes next. Fruitiness comes with melon and pear notes. Yeast adds pepper and dry, old leather funkiness (I'd have guessed some Brett was in here). Just a flicker of sweet, anise-tinged basil. Hops are floral and astringent. Or is that the alcohol? A big flare of heat explodes on the swallow, melting all the pleasant moments that preceded it.
Medium-full bodied, given perkiness by the eddies of CO2.
This carries all the peripherals of a top-notch domestic Tripel. Taste-wise (specifically, boozy heat-wise) it fails to deliver as it burns past all its nuance and charm.

Photo of Sammy
3.67/5  rDev -6.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Pours neutral colour with some head. Salad dressing aroma,such as oregeno and that's what's delivered. Taste: Sundried tomatoes, olive oil and olives, and some rice, and some other spices. Above average mouthfeel. Its drinkable, but not to much, and would not seek it out again.

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Trade Winds Tripel from The Bruery
88 out of 100 based on 1,028 ratings.