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

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Brother David's Triple Abbey Style AleBrother David's Triple Abbey Style Ale

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628 Ratings
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Ratings: 628
Reviews: 359
rAvg: 3.48
pDev: 15.8%
Wants: 9
Gots: 51 | 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: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 628 | Reviews: 359
Photo of gpogo
3.69/5  rDev +6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

A- Clear deep gold with off-white head that thins.

A- Fruity sweet aroma, slight hints of apricot. Nice spicy belgian yeast smell as well. Perhaps a bit of coriander?

T- Fruity sweetness followed by an alcoholic taste

M- Medium-light body.

D- I have never had a tripel this dark, at first I feared it. Though I opened up to it. A rather decent tripel, though at $5.99 there are other tripels I'd rather have.

Photo of gabeerfan
3.43/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Pours a coppery amber with a thin, fizzy head that dissapates very quickly.
Very first smell kinda smelled macro-ish with some corn and alcohol. But it mellowed into a subtle fruity-sweet aroma. Peaches/apricots? Some candy sugar in there too. Alcohol aroma lingers.
Kinda sweet tasting, not cloying, but sweet. Peaches/apricots again, caramel, a suggestion of hops, and the candy sugar.
Light mouthfeel. A little slickness over the tongue scraped clean by lots of tiny bubbles.
It's a sipper at 10%, but pretty drinkable.
A good, but not great, American Triple. I've had better Triples and better beers from Anderson Valley.

Photo of WillClark
3.4/5  rDev -2.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Pours a nice rich copper, but the texture seems a bit thin. Aroma of banana and some type of stone fruit...apricot...that's it. Very light mouth feel- lighter than most AVBC beers. Drinkable, but that doesn't make it good. Clean finish with a little sweetness, but nothing memorable...the yeast turns a bit sour after a while- even though that may be a characteristic of some Belgians, it over-rides any other flavors in this beer over time. Eh, for a Belgian style ale I expect a little more. It's hard to pan any AVBC beer...but this is one..there's something missing. I think their Dubbel is a better pour.

Photo of bunnyhustle
2.82/5  rDev -19%
look: 2 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 2.5

First Anderson Valley offering and a large disappointment. First thing I notice as I pour is that it seems to be thin as water. A very clear golden copper with thin head that dissolves like a soda and leaves nothing behind. Smell is of foul yeast, really cannot distinguish much else. Taste is actually ok, a strong malt presence, a bit of sweet sugar and some alcohol. Mouthfeel is light and thin as can be, just doesnt seem right. Overall a disappointment and wont be revisiting again.

Photo of ibbjamin
2.86/5  rDev -17.8%
look: 2 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Paid $6.49 for a bomber from BevMo in Willow Glen, CA. Poured into a pint glass with 2 pours.

One finger off white head after an aggressive pour. Head dissipates to nothing in less than a minute. Lighter carbonation. Transparent light amber color. No lacing.

Lighter aroma of a hefeweizen. Hints of bread, yeast.

Watery, yeast taste. Rather average.

Lighter bodied. Quality ingredients used lightly.

Somewhat on the easy side to drink, but the flavor is nothing spectacular.

Photo of jwc215
3.27/5  rDev -6%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

22 oz. wax-topped bottle, poured into a glass chalice:

Pours hazed orange amber with a thin swirl rather than a head. Vanishing lace slides down the glass.

The smell is of herbal notes, orange peel and caramel candy.

The taste is sweet - candy sugar, caramelish. Some grassiness is there, as well as herbal spicing, but both are nearly fully masked by the caramelish/sugary sweetness. Too sweet and lacking on complexities. Hardly a triple/tripel, if at all. Aside from style, well...no great shakes there either. A weak yeast strain hardly adds anything. Still, it doesn't taste "bad". The alcohol is pretty well covered with a somewhat pleasant peppery sharpness in the otherwise sweet finish.

Light to medium bodied with mild to moderate carbonation, though thinnish, it has a silky-ish texture that adds to smoothness.

This one sadly misses the mark on the style and is too sweet and uneventful - out of style. I prefer this brewery's double, though that's not a classic of the style either. It's a shame, as this brewery makes some good to great beer. This is not one of them. Maybe they should re-think the Belgian-styles. In the end, pretty drinkable for the abv.

Photo of ABCJiugui
2.97/5  rDev -14.7%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Bottle into tulip, no freshness date

A- crystal clear orange, almost no head at all, recedes immediately. No yeast in the bottle, no yeast in the glass. Kind of a jarring orange color, no lacing.

S- sugary fruit, natural orange car freshener smell, touch of spices.

T- sweet, candy sugar, orange peel, a little herbal, hop bitterness is light in the finish but kind of an afterthought. Not very complex outside of this.

M- Light, and for a 10abv beer, I imagine that's due to the sugars. Smooth, but carbonation and head being almost non-existent so it detracts from it being any better.

This isn't a bad beer- just not one I'd enjoy in the long term. It's lacking complexity to balance the sweetness. Plus, it REALLY reminds me of a poorer version of Allagash Grand Cru, which kinda throws me in terms of its classification and how to view its style

Photo of SIRIUS2
3.9/5  rDev +12.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Poured from a 750 mL bottle into a chalice style glass.

A: Pours a darker golden color, much like that of clover honey. A careful pour produces a clear glass of brew with very thin layer of fine white bubbles with a nice fluffy white ring. Lacing was negligible.

S: Pale malts, spices, hints of dark fruit, and just a bit of a fresh bread aroma.

T&M: Malty, more so than you might expect, but not too much. The flavors mingle for a nice complexity involving light malts, some interesting spices, and something that sort of comes across as light woody flavor. Although relatively modest of flavor, the mouthfeel is rather fulfilling and full without being heavy - something that is always nice when properly achieved. Carbonation assists in bringing some levity to the brew but the ABV starts to kick in somewhere around half a glass. The finish is mostly clean with some hints of malt on the linger and just the slightest touch of alcohol warming.

D: Enjoyable, at least. The more I had the more I appreciated the way the flavors worked together. The malts were just a touch sweet for my liking but this seems to be more common in the American rendition of the Belgian triples. Overall, very good and recommended.

Photo of dsa7783
3.27/5  rDev -6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

1 Pint, 6 fl oz bottle copped from Buy Rite on Oak Tree in South Plainfield...
After sampling many various Anderson Valley Brews, had high hopes for their Tripel, but was rather let down at its mediocrity...
Hazy, orange-colored appearance with a minimal frothy head that soon dissipated leaving a fair amount of lacing...
Smell was pretty much on-point for a Tripel, bursting with fresh-fruit, vanilla, and caramel nuances...
Taste complemented the aroma, but was a let-down due to the overbearing and cloying ultra-sweet flavors that dominated this brew and made it hard to down... Way too sweet and unbalanced in my opinion, and not a particularly great depiction of the style...
Mouthfeel and drinkability took a hit due to the way-too-sweet flavor that pervaded this beer and detracted from its overall mouthfeel and drinkability...
Wouldn't recommend this one as a good representation of the style...

Photo of JohnGalt1
3.28/5  rDev -5.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

22oz from the Boise Coop on Friday for about $5.75.. poured into my New Belgium goblet... When did they stop waxing the caps?

1" head is average.. doesn't last long.. lite orange amber brew.. very little lacing.

Aroma is thick and sweet.. sugared pears with lite white pepper... smell does not really "smell" that Belgian... head spinning alcohol as it warms.

Sweet dough and fruity (?!) Flavor is definitely on the plus side of sweet.. pears and white slip-skin grapes .. green apple .. spicy alcohol and clove... I normally don't flinch on brews with a big alcohol punch.. but the sugar and the alcohol are way too much on this one. Too thick and as it warms is very cloying.

I've had this dozens of times since it became available in Boise.. I always remember it being MUCH better.. this time was way too sweet and a huge mash-up of flavors.

Photo of MisterClean
4.04/5  rDev +16.1%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

On tap at vino's. Could you believe they poured us a pitcher??? The hop heads compared the smell and tastes in a pint glass versus a chalice. I preferred the smell and taste out of the pint. Not very typical of me or a trippel.

A - Light copper in color, with little head, very light in body.

S - Honey, apples, and pear esters. No smells of alcohol.

T - Honey, apple, and pear esters.

M - Pleasant, easy drinking. No alcohol aftertaste, no bitterness. The mouthfeel is hard to top on this one.

D - Definitely drinkable, but the notes I have about the appearance and drinking glasses are a bit disappointing regarding the tripel style. There should be an alternate category for American Styles using Belgian strains of yeasts.

Photo of cswhitehorse
3.47/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Brother David's Triple poured a clear orange with not much of a foam head and no retention.

The aroma was a fermented apple with strong fruitiness. The taste was yeasty which should be expected. There was also some bananas and spice to the taste.

in the mouth there was a sharp carbonation bite. There was somewhat of an alcohol to it, but it kept it hidden pretty well for an abv of 10%. The yeasty taste stayed on the tongue for quite a while. Overall I thought this one was a little rough around the edges for this style.

Photo of wagenvolks
3.52/5  rDev +1.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Bomber into a tulip glass...split with a friend (thank god.)

This beer pours more like an IPA than a Tripel, with its orange, semi-clouded body and lively carbonation. The golden waxed cap is a nice touch, though. The aroma packs in sweet, fruity apples and peach, plus loads of what tastes like honey malts. There's a touch of bitter berries, like a cranberry or sour raspberry.

The taste is of sour apples and vinous, bitter white grape rinds. Wheat and alcohol notes (especially) bring the tongue to a slight sweat. Body is viscous and over-carbonated for such a high alcohol brew. Anderson Valley's tripel is fun at first, but loses its appeal quickly. It was hard to get this one down...a good tripel should make you want the next sip. This one just didn't have that effect.

Photo of IdentityAles
3.18/5  rDev -8.6%
look: 2 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Cellared since 2006 (2005 bottle from Belmont Station), served in tulip @ ~40 F

Nose: Very yeasty, fruity... apricots, alcoholic, with a little nuttiness

Appearance: Amberish... like a dark unfiltered apple cider, almost non-existent off white head, looks viscous

Flavor: Malty... bread, nuttiness, and some citrus notes. Too sweet for a true triple, almost boarding on a barleywine like flavor with Belgian yeast

Mouthfeel: Medium/high carbonation, some what viscous.

Overall: Not so much a triple, more like a Belgian barleywine. Was actually enjoyable to drink despite my review... I would cellar this beer again.

Photo of MTNboy
2.95/5  rDev -15.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Appearance- This beer is a hazy brown color. The head is thick and foamy and there was a beautiful lace.

Smell- Yeasty fruity tones with some alcohol are followed by some malt and some earthiness.

Taste- I thought there was too much of an alcohol flavor and it was a little metallic which I felt cheapened the taste. The were some good flavors in the mix as well berry like with a hint of banana. Also there is a wonderful spiciness to it as well.

Mouthfeel- A full bodied .

Drinkability- Not as good as a Belgian styled beer should be but ok. Worth if you can get it at a decent price.

Photo of sleazo
3.62/5  rDev +4%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

A-Pours a cloudy dark golden with a small off white head. Retention is not a strong point

S-Moderately strong yeast scent with sweetish malt coming into play.

T-More interesting than the nose or look. Slightly spicy with peppery notes coming through. The sweetness is more subdued than I thought as it is well balanced with the spicy yeast. There is alcohol evident in the warming sensation but it is hidden well enough.

M-Slightly thin for the style, moderate carbonation as well.

D-This is a decent American made Tripel but there are much better ones out there. Still this is clearly well made and enjoyable.

Photo of NEhophead
3.17/5  rDev -8.9%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

22 fl oz brown bottle with a wrap of golden wax at the top.
Served in a chalice.

Hazy, dirty light copper with light camel tones. A carbonated white head that evaporates practically on impact not even leaving a sheet. No lacing at all.

Very sweet, Belgian sugar with rum-soaked tropical fruity esters: honeydew, pear, and pineapple. Slick, lemon solvency with toasted grains.

Tropical fruit in flavor with a very sweet Belgian-candied sugar. Notes of citrus at first with an annoying astringency followed by an intense burst of carbonation and a dry, bland peppered spice. There's an intense rum-like alcohol presence at mid-sip that lasts well into the aftertaste.

Almost full in body; slick due to the solvency and sweetness which works well with the flavors, but a bit too overcarbonated for the style.

A bulky, high octane Tripel that seems rough around the edges. I'd be interested to see how this ale mellows after a year or so of aging, but it's not quite ready now.

Photo of MiScusi
3.33/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

On tap at the Stone Bistro. Poured into an 8oz snifter, was a dark caramel color with a light tan head. The smell was very tilted toward the earthy Belgian yeast side. Not as fruity as expected for most tripels. The taste was also very earthy, more in the variety of like a soil or dirt. Not a bad tasting beer by any means, but not really what I would usually expect for a tripel.

Photo of mrasskicktastic
1.79/5  rDev -48.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 1 | overall: 2

A - A large frothy head rests atop a viscous looking clear golden brew. A bit of patchy lacing adorns the sides.

S - Aroma is... strange. On some level it smells of sweet banana - maybe a little malty - then I start to sense some spi... then I'm shut out by this boozy aroma. It isn't even that strong, but the moment I try to probe to this hints of pleasantness, I get a rum soaked banana shoved in my nostrils. Maybe it is tossed on a mound of pumpkin pie spices, but I get nothing but booze and sweet bananas.

T - Spicy. Very malty. Very, very boozy - even at low temperatures. Sure - this is ten percent, but it kicks like a rail whiskey long after the rocks have given out. Reminds me of NyQuil because it is thick, sweet, boozy and has a bit of a medicinal finish - well maybe NyQuil with a spoonful of vodka to help the medicine go down. The alcohol actually works its way way back up my nose as I try to discern the flavors. After the booze vapors finally subside, the aftertaste is of bananas, some allspice, hay and a bit of bland malt.

M - Numbing, and a bit warming, from the alcohol, carbonation is astonishingly harsh for a still brew, thick, syrupy, a bit sticky and not refreshing.

D - Ummm... maybe great for alcoholics who love the way alcohol burns, but want to cut back on their overall intake? The alcohol presence on this one is just unacceptable. I give beers some room to be a bit boozy, but this detracts from the flavor, the aroma, the mouthfeel and the drinkability. Even if it wasn't so boozy, it seems like it would be a mediocre tripel at best. This is the worst beer I've had in quite a while. Still above a drain pour though...

Photo of timtim
3.55/5  rDev +2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

very unhazy for a belgian style, and ambery with a white head that goes away relatively quickly and has good lace. I could go on and on about this one, and I did experience some nice fruit and sweet honey/sugar stuff, but as far as holding its own against other authentic belgians, this attempt just doesn't make the cut. And the boozy finish it carries with it makes it low in the drinkability level. Still a wonderful beer. I just think avbc makes great american style beers and should stick to their forte. It was fun anyways, and I'm glad I tried it.

Photo of gwood
3.01/5  rDev -13.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Bomber to snifter...

Pours bright orange and clear. I was worried that I poured way too agressively with this beer as I was a bit distracted and it was a bit of a double edged sword...I didn't loose any beer, that said, I certainly didn't gain any head. It quickly calmed down to a thin ring and stayed that way for the remainder of glass. Pretty good carbonation but the flow seemed to tapper off a bit too quick.

Smells are dominated with malts, a very slight spice, and a even less pronounced hop aroma at the end. Not too much of a nose for the style. Where are the yeasts?

The nose gave away a lack of complexity relative to the style leaders and the taste followed suit. Sweet malts overpower the spice in this beer as well as the slight hops in the finish. Alcohol is present upon warming but is kept in check. Mouthfeel is just ever so slightly above average, maybe a bit past the medium body I was expecting although the brew is solidly above average in terms of drinkability.

Not a repeat for me in terms of the style but a decent offering.

Photo of dfillius
4.57/5  rDev +31.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Served up in a tulip glass at weekly tasting with ksullnh

Appearance: Light orange, apricot color. Weak head

Smell: Slight alcohol aroma accompanied by a sour lambic aroma. Notes of nutmeg and lemon grass.

Taste: Tart, crisp opening with a sweet, malty finish on the back outside of the tongue. Very smooth for 10% ABV.

Mouthfeel: Thick and silky

Drinkability: Delicious, and only rated as 4.0 because of the high alcohol.

Photo of Gmann
3.27/5  rDev -6%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a rather flat looking tripel. The color is a dirty orange-brown color, no lacing. The smell is of green apple, candi sugar, and honey, not too bad. AV's tripel hits with fusel alcohol, brown sugar, and some bitter hop action. Kind of a rather one dimensional tripel. The alcohol presence hits hard without any of the nice complex sweetness that tripels have. There is a raw sweetness to this brew but it adds to the alcohol heat. There is a malt/hop presence but doesn't really mix well with the rest of the flavors. This is not awful but doesn't live up to the high standards of Belgian tripels. The feel is moderate with moderate carbonation, finishes on the bitter side. Not a bad example of a tripel but far from great. Not a sugar bomb like some American tripels but could use more complex flavors.

Photo of Floydster
4.22/5  rDev +21.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

10 ounce goblet from the Yard House on Newport Blvd.

Pour was a medium bnrown with a very nice silky head

Smell was sweet and full of fruit accents

Taste was so smooth and refreshing, supposed to be a sipper, but very drinkable

Definitely worth the $3.25 I paid for this during happy hour

Photo of crookedhalo
2.33/5  rDev -33%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2

Pours a light copper/golden orange color with a decent beige head that fades to a collar and thin sheen atop the beer. Aromas are mostly of pale malts with some notes of raw sugar, phenols, light spicing, green apple and pear, some grassy hops and some harsh vegetal aromas (Campbell's tomato soup?). Some sweetness upfront that quickly moves towards a plastic/medicinal mid and then a metallic, alcohol-laden semi-dry finish. A little bit of hops near the end, bitterness in all the wrong places. Too much heat and not enough complexity. Mouthfeel is good with a subtle prickly carbonation presence to cut the sweetness and viscosity. I'll pass on this one.

With this trainwreck in mind, I haven't tried their Double, but I think I'll pass on that one too if this is any kind of indicator on how AV brews an "Abbey".

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Brother David's Triple Abbey Style Ale from Anderson Valley Brewing Company
79 out of 100 based on 628 ratings.