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Tripel Karmeliet - Brouwerij Bosteels

Not Rated.
Tripel KarmelietTripel Karmeliet

Educational use only; do not reuse.

1,251 Reviews

(Read More)
Reviews: 1,251
Hads: 3,768
Avg: 4.24
pDev: 17.92%
Wants: 273
Gots: 713 | FT: 6
Brewed by:
Brouwerij Bosteels visit their website

Style | ABV
Tripel |  8.40% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: kbub6f on 04-27-2001

3 grains - barley, wheat, oat. Styrian hops.
View: Beers (9) | Events
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
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Reviews: 1,251 | Hads: 3,768
Photo of Sammy
3.88/5  rDev -8.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Had A range of experience by letting it warm aggressive mouthfeel.Beautiful lacing and honey pale gold. Particular spice including pepper, cariander wasn't for me but ameloriated by various strong spicey food. Tip off cap to Malto. Had a bottle another 2 years later and hit the spot again. Had a bottle 7.5 years later and lots of candi and fruit, this one aged for 5 years.

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Photo of UCLABrewN84
3.45/5  rDev -18.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

On tap at The Surly Goat in West Hollywood, CA.

Pours a slightly murky light yellow with a beige head that settles to a film on top of the beer. Small dots of lace form around the glass on the drink down. Smell is very fruity with some spice and very floral aromas. Taste is of grain, spice, yeast, and floral flavors. There is an almost medicinal bitterness on the palate that sticks around after each sip. This beer has a low level of carbonation with a somewhat flat mouthfeel. Overall, this is a pretty good tripel but it's much different from what I was expecting.

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Photo of kylehay2004
4.23/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Massive 5 finger, white thick foam head. pure golden and slightly hazy.

S: spicey and lemony with a musty yeast aroma. floral notes.

T: somewhat zesty with lemon spice notes. Orange peel in the finish and less yeast flavor.

M: light to medium body and high carbonation. The finish is semi dry.

D: Just the right amount of sweetness with a pleasant medley of flavors which transition well.

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Photo of metter98
4.32/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Poured clear yellow into a snifter glass with a big, white foamy head that took a while to die down. I knew this would be well carbonated from the large pop when opening the bottle.
S: Very flowery aromas with hints of Belgian yeast, bananas, cloves, lemon zest, and pears
T: Very fruity and spicy, with little presence of hops. There's a nice aftertaste similar to the aromas. Excellent representation of this style of beer.
M: It's dry and crisp and feels rather light on the palate because of all of the carbonation.
D; The alcohol is evident, but not overpowering. Better to sip slowly and enjoy the ester flavors.

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Photo of StonedTrippin
4.12/5  rDev -2.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

probably the second best tripel out there, behind only the one from westmalle, which to me is the end all and be all of the style. this one pours a lot more clear than that one, yellowy and shiny with an inch of really active white bubbles and soda looking carbonation racing to the surface. the nose is sweet, probably from the oats, and the yeast is nicely bready. light fruit notes as well, maybe pears or green apples. the taste is immediately peppered from the yeast, spicy really, quite intense as it finishes. its a good balance with the sweeter malt. the feel is probably what makes this what it is, a beer of lore. that's because its ultra carbonated with an extremely dry finish. it tickles my tongue quite hard, and swallows easy with just the pepper left on my tongue. soft pepper, white pepper, but pepper all the same. just a hint of warm alcohol too, maybe a little more than necessary, prevents sessionability, but I like whats going on here overall, an excellent example of a Belgian tripel.

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Photo of Knapp85
4/5  rDev -5.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This brew poured as a hazy orange yellow color with a fluffy white head on top. It had a pretty good lacing also. The smell of Beligan yeast and some citrusy aromas were heavy in this one. The taste on the first sip was a bit boozy I thought, as I drank more it got much better. Some nice yeasty flavors with some fruit in there too. The mouthfeel is a smooth with a decent carbonation to it. Overall the I thought that this brew was very nice.

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Photo of brentk56
4.34/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Appearance: Pours a foamy, billowy head - Oh, is there beer under there? Tough to disgorge from the bottle but it does leave a lot of lace

Smell: Orange blossom, bubblegum, bananas, honey, green apples and lemons

Taste: Starts with a vaguely lemony, sweet bubblegum flavor; banana tones join, mid-palate, and build with the citrus to a tangy, peppery crescendo; after the swallow, it settles down again and reintroduces the sweet banana and floral elements; the finish also brings forward some spice and peppery flavors

Mouthfeel: Light bodied and tremendously effervescent

Drinkability: Very intriguing flavors but more of a sipper than something to drink in quantity

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Photo of BEERchitect
4.31/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

As a seriously sculpted Belgian "tripel" ale, the idealistic blend of floral aroma, citrusy taste and winy backdrop gives this ale a harmonious taste from sip 'til finish.

Tripel Karmeliet opens with a rich golden and semi-bright color that's similar of honey. And that same aura transpires on the nose and early palate as the ale blooms with honeysuckle perfume, citrusy coriander, an overall flowery sense and a confectioner's type of sweetness.

As the middle opens up, the beer simply hits its stride- developing a lemon and apple flavor that's much more of chardonnay, dry cider and mead once the honeyed sweetness seeps in. Its acidic brightness lifts the thin powdered sugar and charming cookie dough yeastiness, and then invites the herbal "tea" hop essence that ensues.

Even in finish, its lovely bouquet holds confidently even as the ale's quickly drying, sweet straw bitterness and vinous acidity dries the beer with ease. There's still a candied and perfumy nature to the beer that doesn't overstep its boundaries. Though semi-dry in taste, the ale is effortless on the mouth and stomach; making it a fool-proof choice for any drinking occasion.

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Photo of Thorpe429
4.05/5  rDev -4.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pours a pale, creamy light golden with a decent-sized white head and some good lacing. Smell has some nose Belgian esters alongside some citrus. Taste is similar. Quite smooth and nothing terribly intriguing, but overall quite good. Medium body with some nice carbonation and a bit dry. Very well done. Overall, not nearly one of the best tripels that I've had, but still a solid offering.

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Photo of Phyl21ca
4.2/5  rDev -0.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottle: Poured a clear golden color ale with a huge thick foamy white head with excellent retention. Aroma is quite complex with a mix between candi sugar and good old Belgian yeast. Taste is very refreshing with some spices, candi sugar (well balanced by the way), good malt and finish with the yeast. Carbonation is excellent and body is above average but still not too full. Good interpretation of the style with all the ingredient well balanced.

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Photo of largadeer
4.03/5  rDev -5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance: A bright golden-colored ale with a slight haze. It pours with a thick, cloudy white head that eventually dissipates into a thin but persistent layer of foam.

Smell: Banana, pear and spice - it almost reminds me of a hefe weizen, but with tart, dry undertones reminiscent of a tripel.

Taste/texture: Opens with a pronounced banana flavor, slowly becoming more dry and spiced as it sits on the tongue. A slight warming alcohol presence is felt, but it's not a detraction. A bit syrupy on the palate, making it more of a sipping beer than a session beer. Overall a great tripel.

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Photo of biboergosum
3.85/5  rDev -9.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

330ml bottle at Beer Bistro in downtown Toronto.

Into a huge, solidly-built Karmeliet chalice, this beer pours a hazy pale golden yellow colour, with a teeming amount of bottle-conditioned, egregiously puffy, thinly foamy, and somewhat soapy eggshell white head, which leaves some broad melting iceberg profile lace around the glass as it slowly seeps away.

It smells of fruity Belgian yeast - astringent and sweet at the same time - candi sugar bolstered pale malt, sedate caramel, tropical orchard fruit, clove, coriander, and white pepper spice, straw and hay-like hop notes, and mildly edgy booze. The taste is mirror-world caramel and vanilla, both warming and low-key in their overt sugary character, more fruity yeast - dry banana and lemon, mostly - subtly edgy alcohol, lightly zingy cloves, and some put-upon breakfast cereal graininess.

The carbonation is rather high-palate frothy from the get go, but does eventually settle to a more moderate level, the body on the wan side of medium weight, generally smooth and kind of slick. It finishes reservedly, but still quite sweet, with that warm, reducing caramel essence, countered by the lingering yeast and alcohol dryness.

A pleasant enough Tripel, the high booze quotient at least tempered by the various (ok, '3') malt inputs, as well as the particularly active yeast. Decent, but exhibiting perhaps a bit too much heat to be considered all that drinkable, though it will likely steel me for the stroll back to my hotel on a so-so Toronto mid-late winter evening.

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Photo of zeff80
4.44/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Poured out a cloudy, high carbonated, orange hue. It had a very fizzy, white, foamy, three-finger head that left a little lace.

S - It smelled very fruity!! It really smelled of cherry and apples. Also, some phenolic aromas.

T - It tasted of yeast, clove and grains. The alcohol taste was also present. It had a nice spicy kick.

M - It was crisp and sharp. A medium-bodied beer.

D - This is a very nice tripel. I had been looking for it and finally found one. I really enjoyed it.

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Photo of BuckeyeNation
4.88/5  rDev +15.1%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Tripel Karmeliet looks magnificent in the glass. The explosive, toweringly majestic crown of richly creamy, cream colored foam sitting atop the sparkling amber liquid is a sight to behold. It's been a while since I've laid eyes on a better looking beer. Elegant, arching fingers of lace point to the glass contents as if to say 'now here's a fine looking ale'.

The nose is intensely spicy and abounds with cardamon, white pepper and clove. Drunken golden fruits (apples, pears, peaches) are present as well, but take a backseat to the spices. This is another one of those Belgian tripels, or BSPAs, or BSDAs, that has a spicy alcohol presence in the nose that is so well-integrated as to be an essential, welcome part of the whole.

Wow! Just Wow! Tripel Karmeliet may not have the no-holds-barred, hold-onto-your-hat gusto of a De Dolle Dulle Teve, but it is one amazingly delicious beer. Think of it as the Mad Bitch's more attractive, nicer sister. Sweet, tangy, bitter, fruity, spicy, warming, soothing... where do I begin?

The most impressive thing about this Brouwerij Bosteels offering is... well, two things. One is the vividness of the various flavors. I taste brandy-macerated, spice-sprinkled orchard fruits with such intensity, it's as if I'm eating them rather than drinking beer. Two is the pitch perfect melding of the various flavor notes in the mouth. While they're easily appreciated on an individual basis, I prefer to let the beer wash over my tongue and to allow the whole damn shootin' match to work its magic.

I'm looking for flaws, but I'm convinced they don't exist. Any change would be for the worse. More or less of anything would be too much or not enough with regard to the tripel perfection that sits before me... not for very much longer, I might add. The finish is an extension of what came before in terms of flavor, with the potentially drying aspect of the alcohol offset by a mellow sweetness.

The mouthfeel is easily the equal of any Belgian tripel that I've ever had. It's actually on the full side of medium, but is rendered light and silky by a perfect amount of soft carbonation. It's yet more evidence that the brewery has paid attention to every aspect of this beer and has fine-tuned it until it hums with the precision of a Swiss watch.

While my experience with Belgian tripels is still somewhat limited, I've found a 'tripel triple' that I really like: De Dolle Dulle Teve (Mad Bitch), Westmalle Tripel, and now Tripel Karmeliet. Each has its charms, but at the moment, this beer is my clear favorite. From where I sit, Tripel Karmeliet is the quintessential Belgian tripel and is the unqualified best.

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Photo of oberon
4.23/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a light golden with a huge blooming head that leaves big globs of lace down the glass,big spicey aroma peppery and yeasty a touch of smoke and orange.Yeasty up front on the palate with a spritzey lemon note with the spiciness more subdued compared to the aroma,pretty refreshing for a beer with such a high alcohol content.A well made Tripel worthy of high marks.

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Photo of mikesgroove
4.45/5  rDev +5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

believe it or not i had not had this one before this night. i decided to go out with a bang and ordered up a glass of this one to round out the night. served chilled and poured into a glass on 11/07/2010.

really not the pour i was expecting, for some reason i thought it would be much darker, but the light golden hue of it had a nice cloudiness to it that seemed to come through nicely with a bit of lacing around the sides.

aroma is light bready notes and hints of banana, cloves, pears, light tart apples and a touch of spice on the edges. clean, very clean flavor that it is very hard to find really any fault here in that. super clean with light body and a nice medium palate with hints of grain and light fruits that seem to dance all over the place. light bears and nice touches of fruit and light spice. smooth, clean finish and absent abv lead to just a great mix of flavor and drinkablility.

overall it deserved all that it deserves, really a great and light an highly drinkable beer.

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Photo of nickfl
4.2/5  rDev -0.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - The beer pours with a huge, three finger head of white foam on a slightly hazy, golden body. The head dissipates fairly quickly and leaves moderate lace.

S - Earthy, musty hops with some bready, pilsner malt in the background.

T - Sweet, bready pilsner malt up front. Some fruity notes of pear peek out in the middle before being swallowed up by phenolic yeast as pepper and clove takes over in the finish.

M - Medium-thick body, very high carbonation, and a slightly sweet finish.

D - Nicely done, the malt is readily apparent, but it takes a back seat to the spicy yeast and musty hops.

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Photo of ChainGangGuy
4.13/5  rDev -2.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

330ml bottle - $3.99 at Total Wine & More in Alpharetta, Georgia

Appearance: Pours a hazed, dulled golden body with a very tall, meringue-like, white head.

Smell: Lightly tangy, faintly grainy malts with a coating of ground spices and a spritz of potent spirits trailed by notes of blendered fruits and zestful herbs.

Taste: Starts sweet, quite sweet, actually, with a taste of sugary honey candies. Tangy wheatiness, then a variety of flavors cross the tongue, including: 'nanas, green apples, lemon juice, orange marmalade, chopped coriander, and a light pinch of white pepper. Restrained floral character midway. Slight, subtle bitterness. Some heat from the alcohol as you arrive at the drying, fruit finish.

Mouthfeel: Medium-bodied. Medium-high carbonation, lively and a bit fizzy at times.

Overall: A very solid, well-made representation of the tripel style.

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Photo of TMoney2591
3.84/5  rDev -9.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Served in a Stella Artois globe at The Office in St. Charles.

It's VDubb's rehearsal dinner, and this beer stood out for me on the menu. It's been too long since my last Karmeliet. This stuff pours a mostly clear gold topped by a finger of white foam. The nose comprises cracked wheat, light black pepper, clove, restrained citrus (I imagine a small, literally-fruity straightjacket), and Belgian yeast. The taste brings in more of the same, with the yeast and its spices dancing their way into my heart (or, at least more directly, my stomach). The body is a light-leaning medium, with a light moderate carbonation and a drying finish. Overall, as solid a tripel as I remember, this one tends toward the drier, more saison-like end of the spectrum than the sweeter end. It's good times regardless.

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Photo of kojevergas
3.43/5  rDev -19.1%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

On-tap into 20cl Fest stemware at Beer Passion Weekend 2011, Antwerp. Reviewed from notes.

A: Two finger head of soft delicate cream, good thickness, and great retention. Clear yellow lemon colour.

Sm: Lemon citrus esters. A light strength scent.

T: Lemon citrus ester hops over a weak overburdened barley foundation. Simple but refreshing. Balanced and well built.

Mf: Smooth, wet, but adequate coarseness to bring out the flavours. Complex.

Dr: Nice drinkability, decent quality. Fair price. Give her a spin, lads.

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Photo of TheManiacalOne
4.72/5  rDev +11.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

On-tap 10/9/08 at Pitcher's Pub in Cumberland, RI, served in a large tulip glass.

A: The beer is a light gold color, with a short white head that fades quickly and leaves a thick lace on the glass.

S: The aroma is of spice, light malts, Belgian yeast, fruit, bubble gum and a little hops.

T: The taste is very well-balanced with flavors of spices, banana, apples and Belgian yeast up front. There's a mild but complimentary hops bitterness. The malt character is hearty but not too heavy. The after-taste is slightly sweet.

M: Very crisp and very smooth, light-to-medium body, medium carbonation, finish is very clean.

D: Very tasty, goes down real easy, not too filling, strong kick, very good representation of style, this is an excellent higher-gravity and flavorful Belgian to drink for a long time.

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Photo of Slatetank
4.85/5  rDev +14.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

I enjoyed this on draft at Sharp Edge Creekhouse in Pittsburgh. Served cool in the Karmeliet tulip.

A - A crystal clear straw w/ white cap that measures an inch and condenses to about 1/8 inch leaving little lace.

S - A honey and sweet lemony spice w/ coriander accented by a tropical fruit note and light oaky scent

M - Sweet, spiced dry w/ a creamy element and moderate carbonation w/ med to full body. An excellent representation of the style -leaves an impression and the feel still goes on after the taste

T - A green melon flavor w/ slight herbal hops in the initial flavors. The spice in the yeast and grain give this a nutty taste w/ a gentle yeasty breadiness w/ tea like refreshing qualities. The crisp herbal flavor is accent w/ nutty dry and subtle malty, grainy flavor w/ a cereal like sweetness and gentle boozy finish.
The hops add to the flavor w/ subtle spice and a sort of mown hay aspect that is very tasty w/ toasty smoothness.

D - An absolute classic yet more of a Saison w/ its spice and earthiness. A very excellent tastte and definitely must be tried on draft. I consider this a unique and fine Tripel that is very accessible and well crafted. World Class, must be experienced.

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Photo of Jason
4.22/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Presentation: 11.2 oz brown slender bottle with a freshness date on the back label.

Appearance: Slightly hazed pale amber with a thinnish white lace.

Smell: Touch of honey like sweetness, soft vanilla and medicinal phenols that are a little herbal. Malt is evident and yeast gives an earthy character to the aroma.

Taste: Prickly carbonation with a warming and spicy alcohol wakes the palate up, medium to full in body donning a syrupy sweet mouth feel. Estery and fruity of mangos and star fruit, mild peppery taste in the middle. Hops are insignificant and are only in play to balance this big brew. Phenols are present and do leave a medicinal herbal flavour but not overdone at all. Some husk from the drying grain is in the finish and the warmth of the alcohol get more and more towards the bottom of the glass.

Notes: Quite the alcoholic brew, big boisterous and complex. Perhaps over the top but still a brew to reckon with. A good cheese pairing would be with a nice creamy Danish Blue and some rye crackers.

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Photo of Rifugium
4.33/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

First had: on tap at the Belgian Cafe, Philly, PA

An overall great brew, with a variety of flavors that reveal themselves at just the right times.

Poured into a signature stem glass, an amber-honey color, hazy, with a huge puff of foamy white head that almost floats right out of the glass. Retains well and leaves some delicate lacing. Aroma is full of spice and perfume, with essences of fruit. Light and crisp on the tongue with a cavalcade of flavors: herbs and floral perfume give way to peach, pear, melons, orange blossom, and a touch of banana esters, with a ubiquitous peppery sensation. Tasty all over, with hints of its relatively high alcohol content. Medium-bodied, complex, full of flavor, and highly drinkable.

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Photo of russpowell
3.9/5  rDev -8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

750 ml bottle (love the art work on it) opens with a thunderous pop. Pours deep golden/ bronze, effervescent with 4 fingers+ white meringe (sp?) head. Started getting floaties towards the bottom of the bottle. Good lacing & head retention

S: Big lemony hops & straw perfume

T: Honey malt, citric hops (grapefruit & lemon) & a peppery yeast bite up front. Fruttyness follows (appleskins& apricots). Breadyness & jam flavors follow. Finishses fruitty, with lemony & juicy& peppery flavors

MF: Slick (maybe this what the oats bring to the party?) with low carbonation

This was just so-so in drinkability, trippels aren't my favorite style & this one was just l little to ponderous for my tastes. Tripel fans will like this a lot more than I did

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Tripel Karmeliet from Brouwerij Bosteels
94 out of 100 based on 1,251 ratings.