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Trade Winds Tripel - The Bruery

Not Rated.
Trade Winds TripelTrade Winds Tripel

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very good

946 Ratings
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 946
Reviews: 318
rAvg: 3.92
pDev: 9.95%
Wants: 45
Gots: 110 | FT: 4
Brewed by:
The Bruery visit their website
California, United States

Style | ABV
Tripel |  8.10% ABV

Availability: Summer

Notes/Commercial Description:
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 added by: Bitterbill on 05-25-2008)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 946 | Reviews: 318 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of lacqueredmouse
3.15/5  rDev -19.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Purchased at Ledger's Liquor in Berkeley, CA, and brought back to Australia to share with @LaitueGonflable, @tobeerornottobe and @FakeCousinAndrew.

Pours a hazed but bright golden colour, with a fill bodied, if large-bubbled and foamy head. Lacing is sudsy and thick. Minimal carbonation present - in fact, the body of the beer looks quite still and quite heavy. Looks very pleasant, particularly the colour.

Nose is pleasantly round with lots of Belgian esters coming off it. Light vinous acidity, and very slight hint of oak. Some apple cider vinegar character comes through as it warms, which doesn't really suit, although the other characters are nice.

Very thin on the palate, with some faint cidery nothingness on the front and a back laced with sharp Belgian phenols. The rice, I feel, is the attempt to lighten the body, but I fear it's what gives that straight fermented sugar sweetness, and a hint of the cider. The phenols on the back are true to style, but they stand out a little too harshly. Not a whiff of the basil.

Feel is light in feel, but heavy in body. As in, you can't feel the thickness in the mouth, but you can as you swallow.

Only an average brew as far as I'm concerned. Misses the mark for the style, and the extra "quirks" added to it don't do enough to make it interesting.

lacqueredmouse, Jan 15, 2011
Photo of ColdPoncho
4.05/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - HUGE head! A nice brunt copper colored body. I think this beer looks really great.

S - Spices, and basil. Very powerful floral alcohol, i think. There is something quite odd in this nose, which I can't quite place. But it is a very powerful smell.

T - This is tasty. A nice malt profile supports the subtle flavors of citrus, vanilla, and that belgian spice I love so very, very much.

M - Big and light and fluffy. The slightest bit drying.

D - It's palatable and smooth. Bit of an aftertaste that deters. It's pretty drinkable though.

ColdPoncho, Jan 15, 2011
Photo of clarkm04
4.22/5  rDev +7.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Appearance- Hazy deep amber color. Nice clean white head retention. Medium carbonation

Smell - Complex nose with a slight straw note along with fruit notes and some very unique spices

Taste- The front end of the beer is typical Tripel with a nice complex character followed by a unique back end where the Asian spices kick in. The Asian spice flavor notes are very subtle. The basil is present but very balanced with the rest of the beer. A very clean, dry finish. One of the better Tripels and certainly one of the most unique. A really appreciate the complexity and uniqueness of this beer.

Mouthfeel- Very smoth with a slight citrus note

Drinkability- Very high. I feel cursed for only having one bottle.

Overall - Outstanding. I would highly recommend this beer to anyone. What a fun, outstanding, and complex beer to drink.

clarkm04, Dec 29, 2010
Photo of babaracas
3.65/5  rDev -6.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours a clear amber with billowing white head that settles to a thick styrofoam cap, someone may have dropped an alkaseltzer in here too with all the bubbles streaming up. Smell: really lightly sweet pils malt, lightly spicy and aromatic (though can't pick out basil) with a little lemon. Taste: spicy, lightly lemony, mildly sweet base malt, mildly herbal. Watered down pear-apple juice in the finish. Would be light bodied but for the high carbonation. Not sure I'd get this if I hadn't read the label, but the after taste has some elements of aromatic sticky rice. Interesting, but maybe thinned out too much by the rice. Summer 2010 release.

babaracas, Dec 14, 2010
Photo of cbutova
4.33/5  rDev +10.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

On @ Dirty Truth.

A- Light orange with a white, fizzy cap. Retention is decent, legs are there but not much lace.

S- Fruity with an obvious Belgian yeast spice, raisins and some herbal feel.

T- Huge mint basil on top of a solid tripel flavor. The herbs blend nicely with raisin, yeast spice(clove) and some citrus fruit and zest. Hops come in spicy and floral. More citrus fruit builds with time.

MF- Creamy body with moderate, smooth carbonation. Somewhat bitter finish.

DB- Worth the price on tap but not at $20 a bottle. I like the herbal addition a lot but could see how some would not. Drinks easily and very flavorful.

cbutova, Nov 28, 2010
Photo of willjschmidt
4.05/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 750ml bottle into a Bruery tulip.

A: Pours a hazy golden orange with a very thick white head.

S: Spicy yeast as well as a touch of sweetness.

T: Light fruits give way to a touch of white sugared sweetness. Spicy belgian yeast is ever present as well. Very complex, very tasty. The thai basil comes through at the end as well as the finish. It's very subtle, no way I would have picked it out if it wasn't written on the bottle.

M: Medium-light to medium bodied, high level of carbonation.

D: A very drinkable twist on a tripel.

willjschmidt, Nov 25, 2010
Photo of kwjd
3.73/5  rDev -4.8%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Shared a 750mL bottle of this at Animal restaurant in Los Angeles. Pours a cloudy orange with incredibly thick white head. Lots of lacing. I felt the need to take a picture of the glass while drinking. Smells quite spicy, but I had trouble trying to place what the spices were. Lots of Belgian yeasty aroma too. A bit prickly in the mouthfeel, but a nice tripel. Reminded me of a strong saison almost.

kwjd, Nov 24, 2010
Photo of SirRuss
3.8/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Served at about 58F (I know, higher than recommended, but intentional due to the chilly november night), brought forth not only herbaceous notes described on the label, but also festive scents of cinnamon and ginger, and an aroma reminiscent of warm carrot cake.

The taste offered a similar profile, very well balanced with a good level of hopping. A menthol note (also present on the nose) provided a clean finish that worked in hand with the hops. Traditional tripel profile only really comes forth at the end.

Carbonation looked questionable on the pour, but not as bad as first expected - although could do with some taming.

Superb off-centre interpretation of the tripel - added to the style without detracting from it. Not sure how long the novelty would remain appealing, but definitely longer than one bottle, so I'll be back for more.

SirRuss, Nov 24, 2010
Photo of hardy008
2.68/5  rDev -31.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Clear gold color with a huge white head with good retention. The aroma has bread, sweet malt, coriander, yeast, pepper, and basil.

The taste is just like the aroma. Bread, sweet malt, coriander, yeast, pepper, and basil. The sweetness is balanced by some bitterness. Rice is used in place of candi sugar. The rice and the Thai Basil make for an interesting combination, but I prefer a more traditional Tripel.

Medium bodied, heavy carbonation, and the alcohol is pretty well hidden. Overall not a bad beer, but far from the best Tripel I have had.

hardy008, Nov 20, 2010
Photo of OneDropSoup
3.33/5  rDev -15.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

An out-of-towner on tap at House of 1000 Beers -- gimme gimme!

Poured into a stemmed tulip: Clear, golden-brass body under a finger of cushiony white foam, very attractive.

Smells of baking spices, honey, pie crust. Sorry I can't be more specific, but a good smell.

Taste starts off strong with rich baking spice: nutmeg, a little cinnamon, orange zest. Some alcohol heat which, combined with the orange flavor, turns into a Triple Sec or bitters flavor. Hmm, not a big fan of that. Dry, flinty fruit character in afteraste, that really dominates after a while. Becomes unwieldy & kind of turns me off, ends up tasting like a worn-out pumpkin ale after a while. Some anise. Starts off strong, trips over itself & gets muddy.

Mouthfeel is crisp but full, dry in the middle.

Oy, this is kind of a mess, in my opinion. Starts strong, pretty compelling, but almost so complex that it becomes unwieldy & turns into a juggling act, & the drinker can't help but drop the ball.

OneDropSoup, Nov 17, 2010
Photo of Haybeerman
4.08/5  rDev +4.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A: Hazy orange/amber color. Poured a 3 finger off white head with excellent retention; a dollop stayed on top - had to clear it to smell the beer. Decanted continually. Lots of sticky lacing on the glass.

S: Prominent malt character. Yeast, light fruit and lemon. Pepper a little basil (basil more prominent as the beer warmed).

T: Sweet, bready malt. Fruit comes through apple and pear. Basil is very muted not taking the beer out of balance as some spiced beers. Alcohol chases the bitter.

M: Medium body. Ample carbonation. Finish is dry and a little warm, but carbonation brightens and cleanses.

D: Very drinkable; almost refreshing. Disguises the ample abv well.

Haybeerman, Nov 16, 2010
Photo of twiggamortis420
4.22/5  rDev +7.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A tripel with rice and thai basil, eh? Interesting. 750 mL bottle courtesy of G311. Pours a very hazy gold color with a large-bubbled off-white head. Fades pretty quick and a few patches of lace stick to the glass.

Nose is fantastic! Uniquely fruity, like a cranberry-mango chutney. Basil is there, but subtle. Light honey aroma melds with some grainy malt and alcohol. Hops are detectable and make this a complex sniffer, probably the best smelling tripel I have ever laid nostrils upon.

Smooth and extra-creamy mouthfeel is what strikes me first on this beer. Tropical fruits with an herbal accent on the flavor with a stiff bitterness and alcohol drying. Body is substantial and big for a tripel. Fruit levels take on the best from Belgium, impressive. Very nice brew, might be my favorite that I have had so far from The Bruery.

twiggamortis420, Nov 14, 2010
Photo of Gobzilla
4.03/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured a golden yellow with slight yellow highlights and had a finger of white fluffy head but it did leave some bubbly lacing sticking to the glass. The aroma was of belgian yeast, herbs, spices, faint basil, slight citrus, and clove character. The flavor was pretty similar to the nose which was herbs and spice for sure alongside the belgian yeast strain, very slight citrus, but it also had the clove type notes on the palate as well. The brew was medium in body with a good amount of carbonation which had a spice, herby, sweet, and slight grainy finish. It drank very well and was tasty out of the bottle and on tap but IMO it was leaning towards more of an experimental tripel; still tasty.

Gobzilla, Oct 25, 2010
Photo of TCgoalie
3.88/5  rDev -1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours golden with a massive fluffy white head that sticks around throughout my consumption. There is a near champagne like wealth of bubbles rushing to the surface.

A healthy dose of malt is complimented by apple and lemon in the scent. Also coming though is a fresh grass like smell.

A clean malty taste pairs with flavors of mint, apple, and pear. The basil taste is more grassy than basil-y and is very faint which is probably a good thing as not to overpower the other flavors.

This is light in the mouth with a good deal of bubbles. The finish is clean with just an edge of drying.

This is quite drinkable and refreshing. I could imagine having this with some lemon pepper chicken, wild rice, and asparagus.

TCgoalie, Oct 24, 2010
Photo of Thorpe429
3.78/5  rDev -3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a light golden color with a nice white head and a pretty good amount of lacing. The nose brings forward citrus, herbs, and a good amount of basil. Maybe I wouldn't have noticed it as much without the note on the label, but it is definitely quite prevalent. The taste brings some light citrus, fruit, and basil. Nice clean and crisp mouthfeel with good carbonation. Really unique and drinks quite well.

Thorpe429, Oct 23, 2010
Photo of zoso1967
4.18/5  rDev +6.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours a orangish light amber color with a head that is slightly yellow cast white. The head is super pillowy and soft looking. It has wonderful retention and leaves some serious lace on my chalice.

The aroma is very nice with a fruity and spicy character. Pear, tart apple, white pepper, coriander, a touch of clove and just a hint of basil. I was kind of worried the basil would overpower in this brew, but luckily it appears they used it to compliment the normal tripel traits. The more I smell this beer, the more the basil seems to blend in, transforming the other aromas into something very unique.

The flavor is very nice, and not quite like any other tripel I have had. It has plenty of spicy yeast character with notes of pepper, clove and coriander. It also has a nice orchard fruitiness to it that is similar to the aroma. The basil seems to come through more in the flavor for me and has a fresh, almost minty character to it. It mingles well with the other flavors of the beer, and makes a pretty enjoyable flavor profile. In fact, it almost has a sort of funky flavor to it, though I don't believe any wild yeast was used. Very interesting. The malt character of this beer is pretty plain, but that may well be the result of the rice they used in brewing.

The mouthfeel is medium and fairly spiky on the tongue, but in an invigorating and enjoyable way. This beer finishes extremely well with slightly spicy and minty character lingering on the palate.

This is by far the most drinkable tripel I have ever had, probably thanks to the rice used in the recipe. It is far from a classic example, but truth be told I am not a huge tripel fan so I really enjoyed their departure from the norm.

zoso1967, Oct 20, 2010
Photo of MoreThanWine
4.9/5  rDev +25%
look: 3 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Wow! I had my doubts about this one and even put off trying it at home. Brewed with Thai Basil huh? And rice, hey I've had a rice beer and I didn't like it. Well have no fear folks. This is just outstanding.

The 1st pour was all head and took a while to dissipate. Hazy yellow color (I'd been afraid it might be green, hah). Bouquet and flavor are very rich and complex. Sure there's a slight hint of basil but it's subtle. What I think their addition to the brewing really achieves is a sort of oppulent and rich mouthfeel not unlike that flavor pop you get from a bite of good pesto. It's sweet, it's satisfying, it's a beer that demands your attention with every sip and could stand up to and accompany a bold flavored meal.

MoreThanWine, Oct 16, 2010
Photo of Metalmonk
4.28/5  rDev +9.2%
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!"

Metalmonk, Oct 12, 2010
Photo of mexikrainian
3.38/5  rDev -13.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

750ml poured into a St. Bernardus Watou chalice.

Appearance: golden orange with creamy white head and silky lacing.

Aroma: citrus, herbs, apple, ginger and oak.

Taste: bland overall. basil predominates with slightly grassy and delicately hoppy taste.

Mouthfeel: smooth light-medium body with medium carbonation.

Overall impression: crisp yet soft, but tastes more like a saison. a one-timer for sure.

mexikrainian, Oct 11, 2010
Photo of beagle75
3.85/5  rDev -1.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a 750 ml bottle into a tulip glass.

A: Slightly hazy, rich orange-golden color with abundant yellow-tinted foam head that diminishes to fluffy specks and an aggressively climbing ring. Moderate lacing remains on the glass.

S: Sweet melon, bamboo, savory aromatic herbs, and alcohol are all detected in the smell--making for a fresh, herbaceous experience.

T: Begins off-dry with caramel malt and spicy hop flavors with herbs, biscuity malt, and bright nectarines joining in the middle. The herbs do taste most similar to basil, as suggested by the label. The finish is drying with a sharp mineral bitterness that lingers. Alcohol flavor accumulates on the palate over time, but does not detract from other sensory qualities--staying within the boundaries of the style.

M: Medium viscosity, full and sticky on the palate, with an abundance of cleansing carbonation.

D: A fairly approachable and inventive rendition of a challenging style that rarely steps out of its traditional boundaries. Tripels are most impressive in the company of complex food flavors--usually ready to stand in for a range of acidic and spicy wine varietals--and this seasonal offering from The Bruery will fulfill this role admirably. Furthermore, between the bottle style, traditional service in stemmed glassware, and the featured flavor of basil, this beer represents a powerful mind-changing tool to share with those individuals that think they have already made up their minds about beer.

beagle75, Oct 10, 2010
Photo of rudzud
4.3/5  rDev +9.7%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Picked this bottle up a few months back. Pouring into a Duvel tulip.

A - Nice almost crystal clear golden pour with a BIG frothy, fluffy three finger white head that slowly shrinks down. Not really much side lacing but a nice quarter inch head is constant down to the last sip.

S - Really fragrant! Theres the typical tripel aromas, light citrus notes with that solid yeast. There is a really, really good herbal aroma presumably the thai basil.

T - Starts off with a light citrus rice flavor that seemlessly blends into some light hop only to finish with a nice herbal spiciness. The thai basil isnt nearly as powerful on the palet as the nose, but this does have some good flavors.

M - Medium carbonation, surprising for this style and ABV. Somewhat crisp, not sticky at all.

D - Smooth yet initially crisp the great foamy head, uniquely herbal aromas, and nice flavor makes this a really solid tripel from The Bruery. Really starting to enjoy this brewery.

rudzud, Oct 10, 2010
Photo of WestValleyIPA
4/5  rDev +2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a 25 oz bottle into my Zatec fluted glass. Huge head to start with, I poured a little too aggressively. With my second normal pour about 3 fingers of light spongey head. Very nice golden cloudy color. Smell is quite interesting. The normal belgian yeast, and then an overpowering herbacious quality, definitely that thai basil coming through. Spicy and light citrus. Warm flavors, very herbal, lightly sweet and spicy. Having a hard time knocking out the whole bottle. Very creamy mouthfeel.

WestValleyIPA, Oct 02, 2010
Photo of david18
4.03/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This was my review of this beer in a bottle:

This is probably the best American-made Triple I've had. Great color and flavor, alcohol by volume is dead on. Good hints of fruit and great carbonation.

Bought it at the new Whole Foods on the Upper West Side of Manhattan. Don't remember the price but less than I expected from a 750 ml bottle. This is a good beer and the Bruery is becoming more available on the east coast.


This tripel is, as I said, one of the best. A little on the sour side, but great!

david18, Oct 01, 2010
Photo of ejyoung
3.9/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured into a La Chouffe tulip glass with a nice golden color and a ton of head. The head eventually settle down to leave about a quarter inch. Smell was like a normal tripel with the addition of Thai basil - nice. Mix of a spicy and sweet taste with the basil showing through. The carbonation is strong and body is as I'd expect from a tripel. Drinking the whole 750ml was probably a little much, but overall easy to drink for the 8%.

ejyoung, Sep 25, 2010
Photo of Georgiabeer
3.85/5  rDev -1.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours a slightly hazy orange with a very tightly beaded white head that with a hard pour is a good 4 inches to begin, but settles down to a nice cap. Lacks sweetness in the nose, in fact, it smells somewhat savory. I'm not a fan of hugely sweet tripels, but this a tad too far in the other direction in the nose. Smells slightly salty and herbal, and almost like a Canadian (unsmoked) bacon. The taste is a little light and also herbal, but finishes with some decent sweetness without pushing the boundaries. Smooth, but a little seltzery. Fairly tasty, and the alcohol is well hidden, but this could have more body and a little more oomph.

Georgiabeer, Sep 19, 2010
Trade Winds Tripel from The Bruery
88 out of 100 based on 946 ratings.