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Trade Winds Tripel - The Bruery

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Trade Winds TripelTrade Winds Tripel

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very good

976 Ratings
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(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 976
Reviews: 323
rAvg: 3.92
pDev: 9.69%
Wants: 46
Gots: 123 | 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: 976 | Reviews: 323 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of bulletrain76
3.18/5  rDev -18.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

75cl bottle. Hazy dark gold-orange color with a big lasting white head. The aroma has sweet candy sugariness, spiciness (Thai basil?), and fruity yeast character that is somewhat reminiscent of kumquats and cantaloupe. The flavor is interesting but honestly a bit on the messy side; too much spicing and too candy-sweet in the finish. The basil seems to add a cool quality but might go a bit to far in the balance. Medium bodied, but sticky and watery in texture at the same time. I thought the all-brett version was much better.

Photo of jwc215
3.93/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured into glass chalice:

Pours golden with a foamy white head. Trailing lacing sticks.

The smell is spicy - basil/herbal notes with some bread and banana.

The taste is of herbal spicing - basil apparent but not overly done. It has a grainy/slightly grassy backbone, along with mild banana and a sweet touch in the middle. Alcohol doesn't show too much in flavour, but, along with controlled spiciness and vigorous carbonation, lends a refreshing dryness to the finish.

An interesting, spicy twist to the style with the addition of basil. A Belgian-style with an Asian flair. Interesting, and a fine pairing with spicier Asian food.

Photo of Sechavar
3.82/5  rDev -2.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Okay, it's brewed with rice, so I thought it would pair well with the heavy meal of the evening which was a creamy asparagus pasta dish. And I was right. Yay me. The rice gives it a very light texture and color for a tripel. However, you don't get that heavy fruit flavor from a traditional tripel, and I have to admit, I kind of missed it. Don't get me wrong, I found Trade Winds to be pretty tasty, especially when it starts to warm up and you get that basil in your mouth and then you start smacking your lips, trying to suck the delicious from the inside of your cheek. Then you go, "Okay, I see what you did there." I wasn't impressed, but it was tasty. And the rice brew with that fresh herbal nose is certainly a different side of beer. So, I would recommend it to anyone looking for an interesting beer, but I'm not raving about it.

Photo of IBUnit63
4.12/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

The usual - meringue head, chunky seam, big, big (2x finger), slightly cloudy honey butterscotch. Wow - reviewing beers gets a little boring every once in a while. My bad.

For all its perfume it smells very dry, which is quite enjoyable. MAYBE I can pick out the Thai basil but I get a little more of the rice character here. Slight spicey burn.

THERE's the basil. Hits the dryness at the back of the palate nicely - definitely some Thai curry overtones. Light, dry raw malt, rice and Pilsener along with those piney Balsa-wood hop presence in a soft touch.

Not yo' mama's Tripel; definitely a bit drier and spicier. That's a good thing, though - I can see this cutting the heft of mashed potatoes at the Thanksgiving table - right before I mix part of the bottle with Autumn Maple. Very crisp.

It's light, it's dry...but there is a little latent weight and heft on this from the 8.1% ABV quotient. It's an excellent beer, no doubt. But maybe a 750 is a bicycle built for two.

Photo of beerthulhu
4.09/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

- brewed with rice and thai basil.

A: The initial pour yielded a monstrosity of foam occupying the greater majority of the glass that hinted the presence of wild yeast. After receding and continuing with the pour the coloring was a turbid pumpkin pie orange that was capped off by a solid foam head (think cotton candy structure) that was paper white in color and stood the test of time. The head was mostly lasting throughout the course of the drink never giving up more then a modest skim coating while leaving pillar/column streaks for a lacing. A rapid and strongly vibrant carbonation showers upwards composed of tightly knitted micro bubble jet streams.

S: The nose was very light contributing very little to the experience overall. Light hints of uncooked white rice or rice paper is evident at very low levels while there is some hints of fresh lemon juice as well. On the trail there was a closing of dry oranges with hints of fresh basil leaves. Overall the nose was very light and clean, lacking a tartness or frutiness with a limited strength and complexity.

T: The flavor was spicy, and tart with tangerines and hints of lemon juice. A fresh herbal helping of basil leaves also comes through nicely. There was an equally bright and sharp fruitiness that was lacking on the nose composed of canned pears, fresh pineapples and fresh apricots with an juice like nature. The flavor was sweet, juicy and fruity with hints of grains and Belgian candy sweetness. The rice aids in keeping the palate light to bring out the herbal and fruity nature of the drink while the finish was bright and fruity ending with pineapples and oranges.

M: light with a bright carbonation that livens things up a bit. A light fruity alcohol twang teases the tongue upon the swallow with a gentle warming reminder.

D: Very good drinkability as well enjoyment. Goes down nicely as a summer time quencher with a light body and tropical juice like flavor that is sure to hit the spot. Not your typical Belgian style tripel but a smooth and fruity lighter interpretation that is highly drinkable with a manageable 8.1% abv.

Photo of donniecuffs
4.21/5  rDev +7.4%
look: 3 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Just had this a few weeks back at the Gotham Cask Festival. Poured a hazy gold, with less than a finger of bright white head, and poor lacing. The smell yielded banana, lemon, bubble gum, clove, coriander, hay, and yeast. The taste confirmed this, with the fruit flavors hitting big at first, and the spices lingering throughout and into the aftertaste. Fairly well-hidden alcohol. Very thin mouthfeel, and not as spritzy as one would come to expect from a tripel, but the cask likely had a lot to do with this. If not for the alcohol content, this would session well.

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

You can easily detect the thai basil used in the mash when you first pour a glass. It smells pretty much the way a tripel should, sweet citrus and spice, but there's a heady herbal undercurrent, something that's not supposed to be there, but is not at all unpleasant. It pours a nice golden color, with a decent head, not highly carbonated, but the foam remains as lacing on the glass.

When you first take a sip, Trade Winds is surprisingly bold, sweet and fruity, a little bready, lots of yeast flavor with tones of banana and apricot. There's also a bit of clove spice, particularly on the end. I have to say I was hesitant about a golden ale with basil in it -- for all I knew, this beer was going to taste like pesto. But it's surprisingly pleasant and drinkable.

Photo of jmalex
4/5  rDev +2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Hooray for having access to The Bruery's great seasonal stuff! Drinking this today while watching Game 2 of the Phillies/Rockies NLDS.

APPEARANCE: Pours into my Hennepin tulip a crystal-clear golden amber. The head is huge and off-white and settles into a solid, rocky cap. Definitely one of the more impressive heads I've seen on a beer.

SMELL: This beer is a force! Big on the breadiness, big on the spiciness, and big on the authentic Belgian yeast notes. Light citrus notes are there for support, but this beer is all about the yeast and the crazy esters it gives.

TASTE: Decently sweet and nowhere near dry enough. But the flavors are fantastic with a much more pronounced fruitiness and the spiciness to match it. The herbal quality of the Thai basil is apparent here (presumably) and it really works well. Again, the yeast esters are as authentic as the real deal from Belgium.

MOUTHFEEL: It has a fuller body than most Tripels but is still on the good side of medium, barely. The carbonation is at a high level which is perfect.

DRINKABILITY: A dryness would improve this area as well, but the beer is so tasty that I'll be happy to drink the whole thing. I might actually be done before the end of the game too!

There are so many great things happening here, but it falls short of perfect. If nothing else, The Bruery's beers never fail to be unique. I can definitely recommend this one.

Photo of dfillius
4.2/5  rDev +7.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured into a snifter

A: Gentle pour yields 2.5 fingers of off-white pillowy head with excellent retention. Chill hazy dark straw gold liquid is pretty. This is the darker side of Tripels I'd say.

S: Banana, clove, Belgian sweet spice. Very Tripel. Some dusty funk, overall very fruity.

T: Nice light Belgian fruitiness followed by some undefined sweetness, maybe caramelly. Goes well with roasted ratatouille dinner. Estery Alcohol makes a showing later on but doesn't overwhelm.

M: A bit too foamy. Gentle and bright. Some heat. Foam is too fluffy in my mouth and is therefore unpleasant.

D: Good. I do want another and would buy again.

Photo of ommegangpbr
3.56/5  rDev -9.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

My first beer from the Bruery, purchased at Whole Foods Market in Tribeca at $10.99 for the 750mL bottle.
The pour- looks like I would expect upon pouring a tripel. Deep amber and quite hazy with a happy amount of white head on the initial pour. Lacing looks like it's going to stick around for awhile.
Scents- I get some soap right off the bat. After a little bit it settles down into fruityness. Flirts with reminding one too much of perfume. The bready and earthyness reigns the perfume character back in.
Flavors- not-quite-yet juicy nectarine. A hint of that kind of bitterness and some of that sweetness.
As far as an American brewed version of a Belgian style goes this is pretty well done. Still, there are better options out there for the same or less money. I would be happy to try other things from this brewery based on this beer.

Photo of fragilemacabre
3.45/5  rDev -12%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

WOAH THAT'S A LOTTA HEAD! No seriously. Ridonculous amount of foam... which does settle down quickly and prettily leaving a very nice lacing and a dense, cloudy amber coloring.

It smells like a bar should smell, a happy/hoppy scent that is very obviously beer, with a bit of a croissant thrown in (sugary and yeasty smells).

This feels very nice on the tongue, but the immediate taste is a bit sweeter than some other Tripels I've had, though it has a good nectarine tartness as an end note.

I was recommended this beer by a Whole Foods employee/friend of mine who had nothing but rave reviews. Since he likes his women, I'd make this analogy: I wouldn't throw this beer out of bed, but it would be low on the list of my booty calls.

Photo of WesWes
4.27/5  rDev +8.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

The beer pours a hazy golden color with a thick frothy white head that slowly fades to lacing. The aroma is outstanding! It has a wonderful citrus and farmhouse funk laid over a grist of pale malts. It's got excellent spice character as well. The taste is awesome as well. It has a smooth pale malt flavor that goes down easy and finishes with a shitload of Belgian yeast esters and a peppery spiciness. The mouthfeel is fine. It is a medium bodied beer with maybe a touch too much CO2. This is a really nice beer with many layers of complexity. Well done!

Photo of almychristopher
4.25/5  rDev +8.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

this beer pours a golden color with just a hint of amber the slightly off white head builds up to a towering rocky pinth. the aroma immediatley shows off the yeasts belgian pedigree, with the requisite banana clove esters and spice. the taste follows with the an array of lemon and spice... the thai basil brings a lot of spice to the dry finish. the medium body and high carbonation make the mouthfeel really nice on an all around good beer.

Photo of tempest
3.88/5  rDev -1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On-tap at the Farmhouse. Served in a basic red wine glass, the beer is a lightly hazy amber with a short white head. As I drank it down, the head left lacing rings around the top.

The main ingredient I'm pulling from this beer is the Thai basil, which is actually nicely balanced against the other spice flavors. There really aren't other flavor, just a typical light bready malt followed by a punch of crushed black pepper, lemongrass, and mild cinnamon with the basil. If you like your tripels spicy, check this beer out.

Photo of weeare138
3.83/5  rDev -2.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Appears a hazy, dark gold with a fluffy, off-white head that slowly fades away into a mild floating cap. Bits of spoty lacing are left around the glass.
Smell is of fresh, sweet grain, melted sugar, caramel, and some cracked black pepper.
Taste is of the aromas with a bit of a bready, mildly spiced, sugary apricot coming through.
Mouthfeel is highly carbonated, medium bodied, and warming.

Photo of Gmann
4.05/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Out of a 750ml capped bottle. Pours a golden honey color with dense off white head that dissipated into a puffy cap. The aroma is sweet and zesty. Aromas of apples, banana and lemon are mixed with some spicy yeast scents. Some barnhouse funk give this brew a musty earthy smell. The taste is of apple skins and lemon. There is some banana, clover, pepper, light coriander and horse blanket from the yeast. There is a tin like grain flavor as well, perhaps from the rice that is added. The feel is very fizzy, the carbonation burns a bit. Nice balance of sweet and spicy. A well made tripel, nice flavor.

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

I had this beer on tap at Christopher's in Cambridge, MA in early July.

Trade Winds Tripel pours a cloudy golden color, and is topped by a bright white head that fades to a film. The head leaves sheets of lace as it fades. The aroma is classic Belgian. The spicy notes of pepper are the strongest. Secondary are the fruity aromas of bananas and apples. Swirling the beer brings out grainy and yeasty notes and a bit more spiciness.

The prickliness of the carbonation gives an initial impression of spiciness. As the carbonation mellows a grainy, malt backbone makes a brief appearance. Fruitiness in the center quickly takes hold with notes of banana, apples and citrus. The finish has an intense peppery spice. This Tripel is on the light side of medium-bodied. The spiciness of the initial carbonation provides a nice bookend to the peppery finish.

I thought this was a good Tripel. The spiciness was strong, but I thought it was a net positive.

Photo of PBoegel
4.47/5  rDev +14%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

750 capped bottle poured into a Duvel Tulip, roughly 40 degrees.

Poured with a very effervescent cream white head that sticks. Body is gold to orange but hazy.

Aroma is lemon pepper, licorice and hints of orange/grapefruit. No perceptible hopping. Some fresh cut pineapple notes as it warms (not like you find from hops, but literally fresh cut pineapple slices).

Flavor is dry malt upfront upfront, licorice and dried oranges and apricot. Also dried pineapple, not quite like the pineapple notes in the aroma, more sugary sweet.

Mouthfeel is dry in the finish, near chalkly (I absolutely love tripels this way) very effervescent cleansing the palate. This beer would go fantastic with a well brined Turkey, Duck or Glazed ham.

Extremely drinkable.

Overall, style wise this beer reminds me very much of many Saisons I have had, especially Saisons that have spice additions for flavoring. Hard to tell if the yeast played a huge role in the flavor profile or worked in conjunction with the Thai Basil addition. Either way it is a really delicious and worth seeking out beer. I might hesitate to call it a Tripel, and in BJCP land might argue it is out of style, but as a beer of Belgian style it is completely fantastic.

Photo of ClockworkOrange
3.68/5  rDev -6.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

A capped 750ml bottle purchased at Abe's in Bethlehem for around $10. Opened and poured into my oerbier tulip-like glass. The tripel appears a cloudy golden apricot color with a healthy looking two fingers of pillowy bone white foam. The aromas and flavors are dominated by notes of quite spicy yeast, black pepper, mint, lime, licorice. Rather crisp and bone dry with a bit too much carbonation. Getting a bit of alcohol as it warms. Very bubbly, and that distracts from the drink-ability of an otherwise well done tripel with a unique twist.

Photo of timtim
4.37/5  rDev +11.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

what a nice brew. hazy dark golden straw color with a cream color head that fizzes a million bubbles a minute while rising and then settles down to a thin web. nose is minty, earthy, herbal basil as well as green apple bubblegum, orange gatorade, banana and a whole host of spicy scents that are typical of belgian yeast strains and asian cuisine. clove, white pepper, cardamom, corriander, cumin. they say basil and rice are the only ingredients besides the usual suspects, so the yeast strain must be particularly spicy. light medium body with what seems to be relatively low carbonation, but the beer explodes in the mouth, creating a refreshing, spritziness. great effort. outstanding representation of what we can do here in america. i'd like another please.

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 patmcd
3.78/5  rDev -3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Cliff notes: Classic tripel flavors with a new-school twist, which makes for a crisp, refreshing summer beer.

In depth review:

750ml bottle, poured an opaque golden amber, with a huge cloud-like fluffy head, that left some mild lacing.

Lot's of spice and sweet, bright fruits on the nose--almost iced tea like. However there is a bit of a bite with the basil that gives it some earthy undertones.

Tastes of light fruit, a citrus/mint , pepper, and of course a lint hint of spicy basil. Don't like the thai basil fool you though, there is plenty of light 'sweet' in this beer.

I love the mouthfeel on this, it was very crisp and light, since they did away with all the sugars, so I found it quite refreshing on a hot summer day.

Photo of mltobin
3.83/5  rDev -2.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

I picked up 750mL bottle of Trade Winds at DeCicco`s.

This is a seasonal offering from The Bruery and the third beer from them, that I have had the opportunity to drink. The appearance is a light golden color with a giant head, that with time turns into a thin lace cover. Smell is boozy, with some spices, however it is difficult to pinpoint individual flavors. Taking a few sips allows for a better understanding of Trade Winds. It is a sugary beer with pear and bananas being present from the citrus aspect and a small amount of hops seems to be here as well. This beer goes well with a laid back evening listening to some music or watching a movie. One bottle shared with a friend or perhaps yourself will be all that you will need.

Photo of LilBeerDoctor
3.68/5  rDev -6.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On tap at The Ginger Man. Pours orange with a thick white head. Aroma of spices immediately and sweet fruits. Flavor of bready malt, sweet melon, bitter spices. An interesting tripel--the rice worked well with this beer. Light, sweet, and very drinkable. Overall a nice beer.

Photo of jnn4v
4.2/5  rDev +7.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Poured slowly from the 750ml bottle into a belgian-style glass. Ended up with huge, white, foamy head (slightly more than half the glass). The beer itself is a slightly hazy orange color. No sediment yet, but there's still a little beer in the bottom of the bottle.

S: Interesting and complex. Spices and citrus seem to blend here. There are definitely more things going on, but I can't quite identify them. The bottle says it's ideally served at 45 degrees, but I'm guessing it'd show even more complexity as it warms.

T: Marzipan, cracked pepper, banana, orange all come to mind with just the first two sips. Wow. So very tasty and complex. Possibly my favorite tasting Tripel-style beer to-date.

M: Lots of tiny bubbles remain even after all the head had died down (roughly 3-5 minutes after pouring). Very full mouthfeel and appropriate for its style.

D: Excellent flavors make me want to come back, but the ABV and the 750ml size definitely limit me to one bottle, if not half shared with a friend.

Trade Winds Tripel from The Bruery
88 out of 100 based on 976 ratings.