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Tripel Karmeliet - Brouwerij Bosteels

Not Rated.
Tripel KarmelietTripel Karmeliet

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BA SCORE
96
world-class

3,342 Ratings
THE BROS
95
world-class

(view ratings)
Ratings: 3,342
Reviews: 1,201
rAvg: 4.28
pDev: 10.28%
Wants: 204
Gots: 398 | FT: 6
Brewed by:
Brouwerij Bosteels visit their website
Belgium

Style | ABV
Tripel |  8.40% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes/Commercial Description:
3 grains - barley, wheat, oat. Styrian hops.

(Beer added by: kbub6f on 04-27-2001)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 3,342 | Reviews: 1,201 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of DavidEddie
4.1/5  rDev -4.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

11.2 oz bottle.
Appearance is a yellow straw color with a huge fluffy white head. Smell is of clove, banana, white grapes, yeast, and sweet malt. Tastes as it smells with some lemon and apple mixed in there. Flavors are on the lighter side. Mouth feel is creamy, smooth, and light. Highly carbonated. Drinkability is fantastic. Flavors and aromas work well with each other. 8% ABV was barely noticeable. Recommended!

Photo of hopsleeroy
4.3/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Poured from an 11.2 oz that was shared with a buddy. On the brighter golden side with a 3 inch head that took a while to come done. Plenty of lacing-looks delicious! Smell of phenols-cloves and banana but not like a hefe-more subdued. Taste was top notch. The "3 grains" produce a very smooth beer. Alot of tripels are too sweet and have too stong an alcohol flavor for me. This hides the alcohol so well that I would never have guessed it was 8% and although it tasted sweet-the wheat character was evident which helped balance. Hops are low but present and feels very smooth in the mouth. Give this one a shot.

Photo of largadeer
4.03/5  rDev -5.8%
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.

Photo of nickynick
4.35/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

This beer was pour with a beautiful white head, and copper and orange color. Smell was sweet and yeasty. The taste of this beer was great, sweet honeyed at the start, followed by a blast of citrus. A hint of spice in the end. Mouthfeel was good. Good carbonation. Drinkability is wonderful. It goes down very well.

Overall this was a wonderful beer. A great true Belgium tripel. A new favorite for me, and I will try to always have some on hand.

Photo of thierrynantes
4/5  rDev -6.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Sorry but this following comment is in french :

Appearance : Mousse moyenne sur robe or-cuivrée opalescente.
Smell : Nez d'alcool qui s'evapore à la faveur de l'épanouissement d'un riche bouquet de coriandre et de levure enrobé d'orange douce.
Taste and mouthfeel : Très douce en bouche, elle déroule délicatement son voile d'orange qui s'epanouit au fil des gorgées
Drinkability : une bière gourmande

Photo of Westsidethreat
4.18/5  rDev -2.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A: Pours a peachy copper color with some haze to it. Head starts out really fizzy but has surprising staying power. Hustle and bustle from bubbles appearing from the bottom of the glass give the body some life.

S: Honey suckle, buck wheat, coriander, fresh yeast, apricots, green apple and Kleenex.

T: Starts off with dry honey traits at the tip of the tongue then yielding to spritzier honey notes across the sides. Some rounded yellow apple with out any sourness comes next, dried hay and simple grain flavors bringing up the tail. Some limestone-like traits add to the dryness without intensifying the hay characteristics most often found in triples and saisons. Finishes with simple vanilla and floral kicks.

M: Medium body with a good softness to it.

D: This is good because its perfectly balanced…which above and beyond it the most important aspect of a beer, IMO. Not over the top in one direction or another. Its not my favorite style so my review is probably a bit low for the caliber of the beer.

Photo of terrapinchris
4.72/5  rDev +10.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Just drank this last night in celebration of my new job, and I decided to take some notes.

Poured from a 25.4 oz bottle into a tulip glass. Much more pale than I was expecting, the color was a cloudy blonde, with yeast particles still settling from the bottle conditioning. The three-finger head quickly settled to a clingy lace.

The smell of this beer is reason enough to drink it. A rush of fruits, including apricot, lemon, and what almost seemed like strawberry, are most prominent. A buttery scent accompanies it, the product of whatever yeast is being used in this bottle. All the adjectives in the world won't do any justice to the aromas of this brew, so I'll stop trying and get on to the taste.

Like the nose, the taste is first rate, a rarity in that it is both complex and satisfying. There was very little carbonation in my bottle, which left plenty of room for the flavors to breathe. The alcohol is hidden beneath a buttery oakiness that is most reminiscent of a chardonnay. The bottle says that oats were used in the brewing, and they help to keep the honey-like sweetness just subdued enough to not be cloying. The beer finishes with a gentle wash of lemon-pepper and spiciness. As the beer warms, the alcohol becomes somewhat more present, but not distractingly so.

The buttery notes from the nose and flavor also lend themselves to the texture of this beer, smoothing out any edges. It's very full, without being too syrupy or heavy, which would ruin a beer of this style.

Simply put, I spent about two hours on my one bottle, not because it was difficult to drink, but to savor it. Again, this is one of the beautifully balanced beers I've tasted. It's rich and complex, and had there been more, I'm not sure I could have prevented myself from drinking it.

Photo of Overlord
3.68/5  rDev -14%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Pours a murky golden color. Strong floral aroma with peaches?, apples?, and pears? Smells pretty good.

Taste's pretty good, but doesn't really live up to the smell. Very complex malt/yeast background, with strong pear and apple flavoring ... but it gets to be a bit much on the sweet side. Lots of earthy spices. Nice level of carbonation, as the big white head slowly dissipated.

I'd drink again, but not in the same sitting. Half a bottle was just about right.

Photo of sleazo
4.43/5  rDev +3.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Got this on the advice of a fellow patron at New Beer Distributors.

A-Pours a cloudy golden hue with a nice fluffy snow like white head. A nice steady stream of bubbles keeps the head afloat in my tulip. The lacing and retention could be better but maybe i am just getting picky.

S- The aroma is of zesty yeasty bread with some black pepper notes.

T-You get a big yeasty hit upon first sip, followed up with some honey like sweetness. Undelying it all is a vague sourness from the wheat. There is a good musty taste to the yeast character which is pleasant. As the beer warms notes of lemon zest, black pepper and floral hops creep through.

M-Light on the body with an agressive tongue stinging carbonation.

D-This is an excellent Tripel. It does not hit one over the head with any of its' characteristics but is a good well made beer with plenty of complexity. The alcohol is well hidden

Photo of rkowalick
4.2/5  rDev -1.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Served from a handsome .33 cL bottle with a parchment colored label displaying nuns harvesting grain into an oversized snifter. The yeast seemed very willing to get in my glass, so I cut the pour short to leave almost an inch in the bottle.

The beer pours darker than most tripels. It is a brilliant light amber that is perfectly transparent. The head is white and fluffy. The smell is of the standard tripel fare: plenty of yeast esters including apricots and crisp green apples. There is also a slight hint of alcohol in the nose as well. The taste delivers quite nicely. The apricots and apples join together into a strong dryness. The dryness continues until a slight spiciness and mild alcoholic burn dominate. The mouthfeel is what really sold me on this beer. It is very multi-faceted--dare I say complex? This beer seems to have the unique quality of being refreshing yet substantial at the same time. The loads of fine, light carbonation scrub and refresh the tongue, while near the finish, the beer appears to demonstrate more body than one would initially believe. After swallowing, the light carbonation continues to dance around the tongue. Drinikibility is very high for a high alcohol brew. Its lightness allows one to take plenty of sips, while its mild heavyness seems to keep ones sense of touch interested.

A first class tripel. Excellent beer that I could recommend to anyone.

Photo of OWSLEY069
4/5  rDev -6.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a clean orange-ish/ yellow color with a white head. Aromas of a dry, Belgian candy sugar, and yeast. In the taste, a dry sweet malt and a hint of fruitiness. A smooth malty mouthfeell and a dry yeasty, and small sourness aftertaste. Very easy to drink, nice yeasty presence, a great triple.

Photo of sawbones420
4.68/5  rDev +9.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

After lamenting, to my beer guy, the fact that my favorite Tripel, Westmalle, was rarely in stock, he recommend I try out Karmeliet, as he believed it to be an exceptional iteration of the classic Belgian style. I took the 750ml bottle home and shoved it in the back of my fridge, forgetting about it for close to a month.

Pulled it out tonight, popped the cork, and poured it into my favorite Brooklyn Brewery snifter. A light-colored, not-exceptionally hazy apricot liquid pours out, amassing a decent size head that quickly and audibly dissipates to a low level, fading entirely soon after. Seems rather carbonated for the style (or is my glass oily? it looked sparkly clean...)

Smell seems reminiscent of a hearty Czech Pilsener, although it's still very evident this is a fruity Tripel. I'm wondering if Saaz hops were used in this brew... later on as it warms, I smell more Tripel and less Pils

My initial suspicions about carbonation prove to be true, as the mouthfeel is lively, yet still has that sharpish throat bite due to the 8% ABV. This beer really dances on the back of your tongue. I'm not sure how, but it somehow manages to be both light and bold in the same sip. Complex. Beautiful!

Flavors are slightly fruity with what I consider a PERFECT hop balance. It has a spicy flavorful finish that combines well with that warm alcoholic mouthfeel. My throat is left all warm, wanting another sip.

A VERY easy-to-drink beer, indeed, which might be dangerous with its high(er) alcohol content and price tag. While I'm not sure this dethrones Westmalle as my favorite Tripel, I certainly can't think of a better runner-up. I will be aging a couple bottles of this to see how things mellow over time.

A definite recommendation to lovers of the style, and of beer in general

Photo of wesleyhighley
4.38/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Should I have to introduce a white wine/champagne drinker to beer this might well be the beer of choice for me. This reminds me of Delirium Tremens, but with a hint of hefeweizen. Very effervescent and mildly hoppy, I could barely taste the 8% alcohol. This was a wonderful beer to follow something heavy - a good change of pace from the Ommegang that preceded it.

I approve and will likely purchase again.

Photo of brendan13
4.1/5  rDev -4.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - A slightly hazy deep golden colour poured into a snifter with a couple of inches of fluffy white head that slowly falls away.
S - A fairly strong spicy aroma hits first followed by some peach/pear fruity notes. A bit of sweet, honey like maltiness.
T - Like the smell but with the sweetness being a bit more dominant. A nice, complex beer with the alcohol becoming a bit more obvious as it warms but not overpowering.
M - Medium bodied with a smooth, creamy finish.
D - A great tripel that is well worth having on hand for drinking every now and then.

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

(Served in a chalice)
Best before 09/08/09 on bottle
A- This beer has a clear apricot body with a wall of micro bubbles from the nucleation point. The giant creamy light tan head last and last for the full beer and has some nice thick rings of foam left on the glass after each sip.

S- The smell of soft dried fruit has a flower blossom smell and a note of soft sweet sugar.

T- The light soft caramel sweetness has a light honey note and a nutty hint is followed by a light apricot taste and a green herbal finish. As the beer warms there is a faint banana chip note and a nice alcohol taste that cleans the finish nicely.

M- The light mouthfeel has a creamy texture from the head and a soft alcohol heat at the finish.

D- This beer has a wonderful subtle complexity with notes of light fruit with some good floral notes and sweet flavors without being cloyingly sweet.

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

A - Pours a cloudy golden color with a two-finger frothy white head. Long lasting with a lot of lacing. Looks very inviting and appealing in my Tripel Karmeliet tulip glass. This is actually the first time I've had the beer, and I've had the glass for some time now.

S - Sweet with some fruity notes, and a little musky funk is definitely noted.

T - Very complex, but awesomely balanced. Caramel, melons, banana, cloves, a little grassy hoppyness. Musky wet hay flavors, similar to Saison Imperiale (De Proefbrouwerij, Belgium). A little alcohol is detected in the finish, but becomes a little subdued as it warms.

M - Medium viscocity, but the carbonation is very well balanced, making it a little too easy to drink. Very enjoyable. This is by far one of the best Belgian ales I've ever had. Gonna be getting a few bottles of this to age. I'll be reviewing these in the future...

Photo of BlindPig
4.03/5  rDev -5.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A- When I popped the cap had a bit of a over flow. Pours with a huge white head on a cloudy golden body.
S- Kind of a skunk aroma in there so not sure how fresh or well kept this was. Best by date is in 2009 though. I have had it in Brussels and don't remember the skunk aroma, but to be fair I did have a few beers before it. Big yeast and wheat aroma. Grass in there too with a sweet malt body. Some bananas and light spice in there too. Just a hint of alcohol.
T- Sweet caramel body with some syrup like bananas with cloves sprinkled on top. Some grass hops in there that leaves a light bitterness. The yeast comes through and gives a big bread flavor to it.
M- Full body with high carbonation.
D- It is a tasty brew. It is a solid offering from Bosteels. I have had better tripels but it is a good one.

Photo of Halcyondays
4.28/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

On-tap at Hollingshead's Delicatessen in Orange, CA,

A: Pours a bright, pale orange colour, with a small, white head, into a Chiamy chalice.

S: Light at first, but as the beer warms up, a nice, phenolic, estery scent comes through.

T: Very complex, one of the best tasting tripels that I have ever had, lots of esters, apple and pear, with a bit of medicinal character.

M: Smooth, very smooth, phenolic, and medicinal, with a bit of alcohol character.

D: Overall, very good, a great tripel, one of the most complex beers you're going to find coming out of Belgium, a must buy.

Photo of Romulus141
4.63/5  rDev +8.2%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I've been on a Belgian Tripel binge lately, and I decided to continue it by buying this brew. I bought the large single bottle.

Poured into a deep, wide wine glass.

Appearance: Pours a semi-hazy, golden color. I am immediately impressed by the incredibly strong head this beer has after a gentle pour. Literally, it takes up half of the wine glass. Accordingly, the lacing on the edges is very strong. The amount of carbonation in this brew is also fascinating, and is probably responsible for the huge head. The bubbles are just racing to the top of the glass. Overall, this beer has made a strong first impression on me.

Smell: What's strange is that when I first uncorked the bottle, the brew had a skunky smell to it. However, after pouring and letting the beer settle, the characteristic altered dramatically. The beer has a fruity smell, consisting primarily of pears and citrus. There is also the typical all-spice smell that I have come to expect from Belgian Tripels. Overall, this is a very pleasant, floral smell that I quite enjoy.

Taste: The flavor is intense, complex, and nuanced. We begin with a blast of fruit flavor involving something between a pear and a kiwi, which quickly recedes from my pallet. It is followed by a malty character which transitions from the intense sweetness into a subtle taste intermixed with spices. It finishes with a crisp, grain taste that leaves little to no aftertaste. This complexity intrigues me, as this Belgian fades away quickly, unlike others which grab your tongue and hold on tight.

Mouthfeel: Light, slick, and full of carbonation. However, the carbonation balances the profile of this brew, and certainly aids in the crisp, refreshing finish. A winning combination.

Drinkability: These are smooth and creamy, and they go down quickly. This, combined with the 8% ABV makes for a dangerous combination.

The Belgian style continues to impress me. This brew is highly recommended.

Photo of PittBeerGirl
4.71/5  rDev +10%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

A-Light hazy golden yellow body that pours with a 3 finger creamy white head. Head slowly fades to 1/2 finger. Decent head retention. In the end a thick collar is all that remains of the beautiful head. Plenty of lacing left behind in the glass. Body is translucent with a nice haziness all around and tiny bubbles constantly rising to the top.

S- Sweet, Spicy, and Bready. Lots of spicy yeast with a dry, fruity balance of pears, apples, and citrus.

T- Citrus, pears, and apples upfront with a bready/spicy yeast background. A slight sweetness emerges with the initial taste. The finish adds a touch of hop flavor to compliment the dry fruitiness. What lingers is a big spicy and sweet bready yeast taste along with a hint of alcohol bitterness.

M- Light carbonation and light body. Very smooth and creamy from the yeast.

D- This is a wonderful Tripel. At 8% ABV it has a slightly lower alcohol content then most. ABV is also very well hidden here which makes it all the more drinkable. Aside from that this brew is light, crisp, complex, and very tasty. Something that I will definitely pick up again

I used this beer as the toasting champagne at my wedding!

Photo of cyrenaica
3.85/5  rDev -10%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

330ml bottle
8.0%
I tried this beer on September 14, 2007 at 'The Beer Bistro' in Toronto. The beer poured a hazy gold colour with a large fluffy white head that lingered throughout. A high amount of effervescent could be seen. The aroma was surprisingly hoppy and perfumey and had floral tones. The mouthfeel was medium-bodied with high carbonation. The flavour was malty with some citrus hints.

Photo of graywalker
4.58/5  rDev +7%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

This beer has the finest, creamiest head I have ever seen. Coats the glass with lacing as you swirl it around. Smell is yeast, bread, golden raisins, grass, and citrus.

Mouthfeel is amazing. Taste is a little peppery, with a little citrus, and a sweet finish. You really don't taste the alcohol, which is dangerous. This went down way too easy, then snuck up on me.

My second favorite tripel, St. Bernardus being the first. I must get more of this. A terrific beer.

Photo of bboven
4.18/5  rDev -2.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Light gold with a fantastic head. Slightly cloudy, actually a little less cloudy than I would have thought. Very bubbly.

Smells yeasty and fruity. There is also a bit of buttery/caramel aroma; a little bit of alcohol in the nose.

The taste is a little fruity and surprisingly light for th style. It's very pleasant, though.

Very slick mouthfeel. You can't feel the alcohol at all. A little thin but very drinkable because of the lighter body.

Photo of bluemoonswoon
4.18/5  rDev -2.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

750mL bottle poured into snifter.

A: Very carbonated with a pure white rocky head. The beer itself is a nice amber gold with little pockets of carbonation bubbling up from all sides. Minimal lacing made me a bit disapointed.

S: Sweet fruits and grass but sort of really smells like a macro in places, but the fruits dominate

T/MF: Apricots and various other tart fruits with a decent yeasty funk to it with hints of lemon. Very bubbly all over the tongue but still somehow nice and creamy. This is quite a refreshing beer and hides its alcohol content quite well as there is no heat in the finish.

D: No alcohol heat but damn it can take you by supprise, very refreshing for a tripel but not quite what I was expecting, this one tastes a bit more like a belgian strong pale ale.

Photo of Brianmerrilyn
4.75/5  rDev +11%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

I knew this was going to be a special quaf when I saw my first glass poured into a frothy amber color with a big head that you have to resign yourself to make a mustache unless you want to wait. The smell of, toffee and light fruits are immediately apparent and for a hot August day, it was the perfect matech.

Taste- deceptively sweet. Higher alcohol content on the 2nd wave of taste.

Mouthfeel-smooth as melted caramel

Drinkability-Unless you knew you were drinking, difficult to tell as it slides down the throat.

I hope it's served more often.

Tripel Karmeliet from Brouwerij Bosteels
96 out of 100 based on 3,342 ratings.