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Brother David's Triple Abbey Style Ale - Anderson Valley Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Brother David's Triple Abbey Style AleBrother David's Triple Abbey Style Ale

Educational use only; do not reuse.

360 Reviews
no score

(Send Samples)
Reviews: 360
Hads: 651
Avg: 3.45
pDev: 21.45%
Wants: 10
Gots: 65 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Anderson Valley Brewing Company visit their website
California, United States

Style | ABV
Tripel |  10.00% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 05-15-2004

Similar to Belgian-style Strong Pales, the Tripel is often characterized by its lighter color, spicy aromatics, and complexity. Brother David’s Triple is brewed with copious amounts of pale malts as well as Belgian candi sugar, giving it a deep golden hue, medium body and rich mouth feel. The dense head gives off aromas of candied orange peel, clover honey, pears, and a hint of freshly mown fields. The fruity esters and spicy hop flavors balance the phenolic characteristics leading to a peppery, citrusy finish.
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
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Reviews: 360 | Hads: 651
Photo of TheHoppiest
3.45/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.5

Anderson Valley is one of those breweries that flies below people's radar. Located in Boonville California, they pride themselves on their green approach to brewing. From their use of solar power (advertised on every cap atop their bottles), to their recycling of water, to their ecological approach to disposing of spent grain, they try to minimize their impact upon the environment.

While they are best known for their amber ale, I picked up a bottle of their tripel recently and wanted to see how a brewery located in the mountains of California approached a belgian-style tripel.

Poured from a 12 oz bottle into a goblet. Pours an ever-so-slightly hazy topaz/amber color, with a thin white head that reduces to a tight ring around the glass.

Aroma is quite mild, with hints of grapes, apples and honey. There is the faintest whif of alcohol, but it is quite subdued - a surprise, given the fact this clocks in at 10% ABV!

Taste is similarly subdued. Sweet, though not as sweet as other tripels, with loads of vine and tree fruit, it is a heavier tripel than I've had before. Apples, pears, plums, grapes and hints of melon are all present in the flavor.While I appreciate that it is not as cloyingly sweet as some tripels I've had, it is still missing something in the flavor that results in it having a flatter or dimmer taste than a really good tripel should.

Medium bodied, with little to no aftertaste, it does not taste or feel like a beer approaching the strength of a glass of wine.

Tripels are one of those styles I have to be in the mood for. I ususally find them to be too sweet and taxing to easily finish, and will rarely want a second after I've had the first. While Brother David's Triple is flavorful and drinkable, it is still a tripel. If you're a fan of the style, I'd give it a try.

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Photo of Fatehunter
2.82/5  rDev -18.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 2.75

A nice finger of head on a clear, dark copper colored body.
The aroma is caramel, bread and candy.
A really sweet start on the taste, that continues middle to end. Kind of malty. A little alcohol heat at the end too. The sweetness is overbearing though.
A little fizzy texture, moderate carbonation and medium body.
The sweetness was too much for me. Other than that, it's fine.

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Photo of 2x10
4.42/5  rDev +28.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours a nutty orange with minimal foam and some lacing.

Lots of carbonation from inital pour from bottle
Has a very bready flavor, hints of molasses, with notes of pear, banana, & slight granny smith apple finish.
The mouthfeel is a little on the thick side.
The complexity rises as the beer gets warmer and all the flavors become more fluent.
My wife and I really enjoy this beer and find it comparable to some of the more expensive true belgian strong ales.
With its high alcohol content, this one is a sipper, and we usually find ourselves maxxed at 2.

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Photo of Cylinsier
4.12/5  rDev +19.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12 oz.

Pours honey gold, slight haze, off-white head at half an inch dissipates to a lacing relatively quickly.

Smells of apples, white wine and bretty yeast. Some fresh grass malt dryness.

Sweet grape and apple fruitiness with lemon and coriander hints and mild dry grassy malts. Hint of sugary honey-esque flavor.

Full body with light stingy carbonation on the roof of the mouth.

A really nice Belgian style ale, good flavor, hides its strength well, and has a unique profile. Liked this one a lot and would seek it out again.

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Photo of FLima
3.38/5  rDev -2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Brown reddish color a little cloudy. Smells licorice and alcohol. Alcohol is also noticeable in its taste, hard to hide 10% anyway. Tastes strong notes of caramel, apricot, cloves and licorice, with some spicy twist. Body is liquor like. Tasted better once I let it warm up, though hard to beat the main Belgians in their tradition.

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

I have had a select few of Anderson Valley beers (canned) and have always been plenty satisfied. This was a nice surprise to see a different style and a bomber I did not recognize.

A- The Triple poured a nice true amber color with a fairly decent head that faded pretty quickly, with some nice lacing.

S - Smells like a typical Abbey Style Ale, with a bit more malty sweetness than I'd expect. I do get some spice... cinnamon and honey.

T - Taste is creamy and sweet and not overwhelming. A small amount of alcohol comes thru after swallowng, but at 10% this is nothing anyone should complain about. It is a nice fall beer for northern california!

M - For this style of beer, feels smooth and mild all the way thru.

Overall, a fairly good triple, but as others stated... not going to win over any Abbey lovers. I would recommend you definitely give it a shot, especially if you are a fan of Anderson Valley.

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Photo of leaddog
3.47/5  rDev +0.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Appearance - Pours a golden copper colour with a 1/2 finger width of bubbly head.

Smell - Plum, cherry, caramalts, yeast, some fruity hops.

Taste - Plum and cherry flavours stand out, followed by the caramalts and hops. More fruit-based in flavour.

Mouthfeel - Medium bodied with moderate carbonation. Finishes a little sweet.

Overall - A different take on a tripel by Anderson Valley. Although I appreciated the fruit flavours taking precedence, I would have liked to pick up on more hops. Better options out there for tripels, but worthy of a try.

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

Unusually warm day in October so a Triple sounded good.

12 oz bottle poured into a Snifter glass.

Deep Carmel color, very sweet fruit smell. Also getting a bread-y smell coming from the beer.

Poured a thin 1 finger head which quickly went away.

Medium sweetness, initially with a medium mouthful.

Overall a solid, but not over whelming addition to the style. If new to the style its a solid intro beer. I find it a bit heavier than others within the style. Darker in color than most as well.

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Photo of Lawl3ss
3.22/5  rDev -6.7%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Lightly chilled bomber into a 12 oz snifter. No discernible bottling date.

Look- Fizzy off-white head dissipates within a second or two, nice medium amber. No lace. Suspiciously clean glass and bottle for "never heat pasteurized or sterile filtered" as the bottle claims.

Smell- Caramel, raisin, cinnamon, mace, sweet, mild Belgian yeasty character. A bit of Fusel as it warms. Subtle.

Taste- Toffee, French bread, nougat and fresh ground coffee towards the end. Surprisingly plain. Sweet, but not unpleasantly so. Mild herbal/grassy/tealike hops make a gasp towards the finish. Finishes pretty clean, although I get a vague popcorn feel.

Mouthfeel- Medium-full, crisp on the sip, slick on the swallow. Moderate warming after the fact. No hint of booze. Easy drinking... perhaps too easy.

Overall- Not what I expected, and not going to win over any hardcore Belgian fans, but I actually enjoyed it quite a bit. +.5 for drinking like 4%

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Photo of Canslammer
2.97/5  rDev -13.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 3

I was excited to try this offering from Anderson Valley Brewing company. I really enjoy a good Triple and since it is from a semi-local brewing company I wanted to give it a try. It smelled fantastic when I opened the bottle and had a really nice color when I poured it into the glass. There was very little head and it did not last long. The flavor did not match the smell. It had kind of a sour milk taste to it that lingered in the back of my mouth that made me crave for something sweet. The 10%abv was well masked by the aftertaste. Definitely not one of their better offerings.

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Photo of UCLABrewN84
3.1/5  rDev -10.1%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Pours a clear orange with a foamy bone colored head that settles to wisps of film on top of the beer. Small dots of lace slowly drip into the remaining beer on the drink down. Smell is of malt, grain, fruit, spices, and alcohol. Taste is much the same with an alcohol kick and a distinct hair spray flavor with each sip. This beer has a good level of carbonation with a crisp mouthfeel. Overall, this is a pretty average beer all around that is drinkable but nothing worth revisiting in my opinion.

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Photo of DrDemento456
3.5/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A - I guess this is what an Abbey Triple looks like. Dark amber hue with a red tone and a 1/2 inch of frothy head. Much darker than you typical triples.

S - Smells mostly of spicy yeasts, malt sugars, and a touch of sour funk. Bread smells as well but and mild ethanol like alcohol.

T - Well it's not as boozy as I expected but it seems like the spicy and lemon like aspect I see in the style is cover up by mildly fruity yeasts and sugars. Mild burn in the finish.

M - Medium to heavy its a sipper for sure. Could use a touch more carbonation though.

Overall this was an OK example of the style in fact kind of staggering since most triple's I had are 8-9% so not a bad high octane version at all.

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Photo of wordemupg
3.54/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

650ml bomber poured into tulip 9/8/12

A clear copper with quite a few tiny bubbles but not much for head or lace, looks pretty basic

S sweet malty cereals, brewers candy, lots of candied fruit, some honey and spice

T a little boozy and pretty sweet, fruits slightly sour and its not as nice as the nose, some yeast and a spicy finish

M strange as its not at all sticky on the lips, a fair bit of heat and it could use some more bubbles for sure, shes pretty still

O not the best Triple I've had but for 10% it went down pretty quick, looks and feels pretty basic but OK in other areas

its a hard sell with La Fin Du Monde in a bigger bottle for far less money on the same shelf. I wouldn't go hunting for this one but don't turn it down if poured for you

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Photo of SolipsismalCat
3.43/5  rDev -0.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured into a pint glass.

A: Cloudy light orange with a one-finger, white, creamy head that lasted about a minute. Not much lacing.

S: Mild sweet barley aroma with yeast.

T: Mild to moderate sweetness and light bitterness. Slight fruity character. Actually not much flavor, not even the alcohol, which is surprising considering the ABV - I'm giving it half a point extra for that.

M: Light to medium bodied with fizzy carbonation. Watery, but really warm going down, which is nice.

O: The aroma and flavor don't really stand out to me. It's not a bad tripel, just not great. The 10% ABV is impressive though.

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Photo of KajII
3.78/5  rDev +9.6%
look: 2 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

[Best served in a Trappist glass}

The pour was a clear reddish amber with a small (less than 1 finger) white fizzy head that dissipated in a matter of seconds down to a very small collar, which created some poor spotty lacing.

The aroma was of a light cereal malt and a sweet funky yeast with notes of candi-sugar, apple, dark fruit (plums and cherries) and a slight sour alcohol presence.

The taste was a tad malty sweet with a mild candied apple flavor early on, becoming mildly yeasty with a nice note of dark fruit, a slight sourness and a mild alcohol tinge at the end. The flavor hung on for a decent time proceeding the swallow with a sour fruity taste left to linger well after all other flavors were gone.

Mouthfeel was light in body with a dry watery texture and a lively carbonation.

Overall a very unique tasting brew, one that has a mix of a Belgian Tripel and a sour beer blended extremely well giving this brew a superb drinkability and flavor...

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Photo of DoubleJ
3.7/5  rDev +7.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

On-tap at The Iron Press, served in a goblet. On to the beer:

Orange bronzed colored brew, with little head on the pour and a few trickles of lace staying put. It's a sweet and sugary nose, but that's not to be overpowering, as orange and clove notes arise from the beer.

Orange sweet, sugar, vague spices, and a good dosage of alcohol providing a heat and some balance to the beer. It's enough, and with more sips the beer's flavor improves. The body is nearly full, somewhat syrupy in texture, with low carbonation in the body. Somewhat of a surprise for me. It took me until now to venture into the AV's Brother David line, and the tripel has rewarded me. Now to try the dubbel....

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Photo of biboergosum
3.72/5  rDev +7.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

22oz bottle. Seems only apropos as I met Trey, the owner of this brewery today, non? That, and I've missed an Anderson Valley tasting in my burg tonight.

This beer pours a clear, medium golden amber hue, with one statistically average finger of thinly foamy dirty white head, which leaves some sparse islet lace around the glass as it quickly recedes.

It smells of sweet wheaty malt, citrus preserves, Belgian yeast, and a simmering underlying alcohol edge. The taste is rather saccharine, grainy malt, more orange and some further apple jelly, a stringent, earthy yeastiness, some very faint leafy hops, and a generally well-behaved (i.e. restrained from causing any real damage) booze.

The bubbles are pretty well sedate throughout this affair, the body a nouveau-riche medium weight, buoyed by the sugar and alcohol, a house of cards, really, and smooth, too, but for a niggling, probing ethanol agent. It finishes just on the storm-side of off-dry (perhaps I've simply become acclimated), the sweetness waning somewhat, the concurrent jammy fruit gaining a bit, and that booze doing us all a favour by only baying at the gates.

Like all tripels, to me at least, I get a disjointed booziness, which here is quite minimized, but still present, in the midst of an underappreciated fruity, wheat-tinged sugar-pop, mediated slightly by the old-world yeast validation. Seeing how the whole bottle disappeared in our short time together, the drinkability is surely bahl hornin', to crib some marketing from another AV product.

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Photo of cindyjeffsmith
3.35/5  rDev -2.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

appearance: Clear golden. Not much of a head.
smell: Sweet, a bit of fruit and some spice. A Tripel and an somewhat nondescript.
taste: tasty, but a bit run of the mill. sweet, bready malts.
overall: Disappointed frankly. Liked the Dubbel better. Not bad by any means, but nothing to go out of your way for.

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Photo of tlazaroff
2.9/5  rDev -15.9%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 2 | overall: 3

I actually get a lot of banana off of this one. A bit of yeast and a doughiness to. Doesn't really smell like a traditional triple, no alcohol on the nose whatsoever.

Orange in color, perfectly clear, and a tannish/white head that falls into the beer quickly and leaves no lacing.

No banana in the flavor. Instead, I get a nice bready/doughy flavor. Hints of pepper in the background and a LOT of alcohol burn.

Full bodied and low carbonation make this a very strange triple. I don't think this one is jiving with me. It tastes alright, but the expectations were not met.

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Photo of soulfly1492
3.62/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Aroma: Banana, clove, mild spices and orange citrus. Alcohol is barely detectable. Moderate lighter malts. Very smooth and pleasant aroma.

Appearance: Gold in color. High clarity. Lots of bubbles rising from the bottom of the glass for a long time. Pours a medium off-white head, dissipates leaving a paper-thin layer. Mild lacing.

Taste: Banana, clove, pepper and spices. Mild phenols. Mild orange citrus. More alcohol as the drink warms up.

Mouthfeel: Light to medium body, mild bite from the carbonation. Creamy and very oily. Slightly warming from the high ABV.

Overall: Decent. If anything it's a bit mild overall. A bit less bite from the spice and more bold and complex malt flavor would be nice.

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Photo of mactrail
3.7/5  rDev +7.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Amber color in the chalice, a couple of shades darker than the usual Tripel. Decent head, and spritzy on the tongue.

Rich an sharp at the same time. Smell of alcohol and yeast, with some fruity brandy like grappa in the nose. More fruity flavors abound. Some pears and hard cider. Spicy with hear and hops, plenty of Belgian deep flavors. Starts out sweet, but turns into a brambly Zinfandel sort of flavor, and finishes with lots of bitter yeasty taste. Flavors like an active fermenter going on.

Second tasting seems drier. This is my favorite Anderson Valley beer, a decent offering from a brewery I am not a big fan of. An interesting and slightly different sort of Tripel.

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Photo of Hoptometrist
3.21/5  rDev -7%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Served from the bottle into a snifter

A- Poured a very clear dark golden orange color with very high streaming carbonation. One finger soapy head that dissipated fairly quickly

S- Big spicy belgian yeast character, orange marmalade, and some booze. Not very complex for a tripel and it smells like a boozy one, very sweet

T- Very sweet orange marmalade taste, sugary taste, some spicy yeastiness but not the usual yeast taste I associate with a tripel (no bubblegum type notes). The alcohol comes out in the flavor bigger than a lot of tripels I have had. Some green apple like flavor as well. A very sweet tripel with some spice that provides some balance but overall quite sweet.

M- Pretty syrupy mouthfeel, the booze is apparent, very big warming and the warming really stays with you, light alcohol burn but kind of in a good way. Finishes a little watery, but no watery taste. Despite the high booziness and somewhat syrupy quality of this beer it goes down remarkedly easy in a kind of sloppy way.

O- Tripels are a personal favorite style of mine and when I saw this affordable 4-pack I had to pick it up. It is not a bad beer, I will be able to get through the 4-pack no problem, but I wouldn't get this again. It lacks some of the complexity of the best tripels, is a little sweeter than I like, and the finish of the beer seems a little sloppy. I will spend the extra buck on a 4-pack of La Fin Du Monde if I want a great tripel for a great price.

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Photo of ONUMello
3.1/5  rDev -10.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

22oz bottle poured into a snifter.
A: Burnt orange with a thin head that's gone in a flash.
S: Fruit esters, bread dough and a bit of both spice and etoh heat.
T: Sweet fruit esters, malt and spice are pleasant as long as the beer is on the tongue, but as soon as I swallow it it turns thick and boozy with no balance. It would be quite nice if it weren't for the offputting finish.
M: Smooth but thick, cloying and boozy.
O: This has potential with nice aromatics & up front when drinking it, but there's something going on that doesn't tie it all together; the finish is not pleasant and I ended up dumping most of the bottle.

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Photo of AgentMunky
3.83/5  rDev +11%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 12 ounce bottle into a wine glass.

A: Cloudy amber. Very little head. Apple juice.

S: It smells quite sweet, appley even. Slight spice.

T: Verrry nice. Not remotely like a tripel (unless you count that one Maredsous that tastes like apples). The apple juice trend continues, but is bolstered in the taste by really nice, dry spice that especially shines towards the end. A slight spike of alcohol gives this a well-needed kick.

M: A little sparkly. I like it!

O: Had with pizza. Very easy drinking and surprisingly tasty. It grows on me. A poor tripel -- I think most American versions are -- but a good beer.

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Photo of smakawhat
3.2/5  rDev -7.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Poured from the bottle into a tulip glass.

A faint off white foamy head appears and falls very quickly to nothing. Lots of visible carbonation, even some snapping noise and lots of bubbles in the glass. Body color is a nice orange amber, fairly clear if a bit hazy. Odd color for this style, but I must admit it is nice.

Nose is some heat, faint sweet Belgian like candy, but mostly nothing really that impressive.

A sweet alcohol hits the palate, and then brings also a real malty bitterness. Straight forward Tripel tast but a bit crisp and sharp, without much density. Aftertaste is really not that pleasant either.

Overall I suppose you could do worse, but I am not really feeling this one at all compared to other Triples I've had.

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Brother David's Triple Abbey Style Ale from Anderson Valley Brewing Company
79 out of 100 based on 360 ratings.