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Tripel Karmeliet - Brouwerij Bosteels

Not Rated.
Tripel KarmelietTripel Karmeliet

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BA SCORE
95
world-class

3,407 Ratings
THE BROS
95
world-class

(view ratings)
Ratings: 3,407
Reviews: 1,214
rAvg: 4.28
pDev: 10.28%
Wants: 218
Gots: 445 | FT: 5
Brewed by:
Brouwerij Bosteels visit their website
Belgium

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.
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 3,407 | Reviews: 1,214 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of Georgiabeer
4.22/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours golden with a good head and decent lacing. Smell is sweet with some herbal and clove aromas. Spicy and sweet flavors up front with clove, black pepper, and coriander. Softens on the finish to a light breadiness. Mouthfeel is quite carbonated, but soft and sweet. Very easy drinking, and would be more so if the carbonation were a tad more restrained.

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

A: The beer appears a light yellow hue, with a towering ivory head that elegantly embraces the upper half of the tulip glass, leaving a fine sheet of lacing as it recedes. The liquid is clear and effervescent, teeming with bubbles.

S: The aroma is grand, with scents of lemons, oranges, grass, alcohol, and spices. Tripel Karmeliet emits a fabulous floral aroma that adds to an already full bouquet. The beer smells very bold and enticing.

T: A fine brew and a great example of a Belgian tripel. The flavor is strong, forward, and aggressive, yet balanced by a delicate sweetness that creates a delightful juxtaposition. Citrus flavors are quite prominent, followed by spiced apples soaked in alcohol.

M: Alcohol presence is there. The feel is medium in body, with a healthy dose of zesty carbonation.

D: This is a beer to sniff, sip, and savor. One in any given session is plenty for me.

Photo of lacqueredmouse
4.51/5  rDev +5.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

It has been many years since I first reviewed this beer, and much as it stands as one of my fondest beer memories, times change, palates change, and I feel now that the scores I originally gave it (close to a perfect 5) will now be tempered by experience and maturity. This was a 330ml bottle purchased from Steve's Cool Booze in Kingsford, probably a similar type of location to where I tried my first bottle.

Pours a hazed pale golden colour with the trademark expressive and voluminous head of white bubbles that eventually settle out to a half-centimetre of foam across the top. Some streaks of lace as it goes, but not a lot. Body is very fluid and light and holds rather large-bubbled carbonation.

Nose is fresh and bright, but caressed with those Belgian yeast esters that round it out and provide some sweetness and a little earthiness. Some smooth vanilla tones, a little bit of blunted citrus, clove and a slight peppery note. It's still exceptionally fragrant and extremely complex. Lovely stuff.

Taste is also extremely good. Big smooth body allows a creaminess to permeate throughout the palate, while bright, slightly peppery tones provide colour and sparkle. Despite this, it never in the slightest feels astringent, spicy or hot with booze, and there's a restraint permeating everything: it makes it superbly drinkable despite the complexities and the alcohol. On the back there's just a suggestion of acidity to clean out the palate and provide a satisfying conclusion.

Feel is wonderful. Smooth but light, seemingly full and crisp at the same time. What sort of alchemy is this?

Overall: wow. I actually expected my scores to go down a whole lot from my first review, and they haven't really dropped significantly at all. I'll admit it has been some time since I last drank a Karmeliet, and so maybe I'd just forgotten what a truly wonderful beer this is. Truly, truly excellent.

Old review from 2005-02-19:

Cloudy deep orange amber body with a massive head that billows up no matter how carefully you pour it. It's creamy and beautiful.

Just wonderful nose. Penetrating sweet oranges, what malt, that gorgeous Belgian yeast which seems to stand out all the more in tripels.
Rich and beautiful.

The taste is just divine. Sweetness or syrup perfectly balanced with a lemony sourness and hops bitterness. It stays around for ages, exploring your whole mouth with its plethora of subtle flavours. It's almost impossible to put into words. You can only experience this beer, you can't describe it. This is truly, truly wonderful.

Overall, this is a brilliant beer. One of the best I've ever tasted.

Unbelievably good.

A: 5, S: 5, T: 5, MF: 5, D: 4.5

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

Poured from a 750ml green bottle. A little overflow after it was uncorked, this bottle might have been sitting around a while. No matter, its still tasty.

Looks a hazy straw yellow, and smells of apples and green grapes with a touch of spice. The spice expands on taste, as does the fruit here. This is one of those beers that amazes you at what a beer can taste like. Not overly sweet. I'd say its perfectly balanced. Give me more.

Photo of BARFLYB
4.08/5  rDev -4.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

Had this on tap at a local bar, surprised to see it in this form actually. I've never had this in all my years drinking good beer.

Karmeliet came to me in a tulip glass with not much in terms of head. A small white cap barely covered the surface. Small streaks of lace. The liquid is light brown/bronze in color. The smell is that of a refined triple, alot of fruits and dark sugars. Candi with bubblegum as well. Sweet but not a sweet mess. The taste is of the same ilk with dark fruits guided by a backdrop of candi sweetness, residual sugars. Getting some banana plus spices as well. Hops don't even try to make a dent. The high ABV also does not come into play. The feel was great with a above medium smoothness with perfect carbonation, not rough at all, goes down with ease. I could have drank another. I will be visiting this in the future again.

Photo of mdaschaf
4.47/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Another beer I had been looking to try for quite a while.

A: Pours a hazy golden color with a massive 2-3 finger white head with decent retention. Not much lacing though.

S: The aroma consists of some Belgian yeast, light fruits - mostly banana and some lemon, a little bit of bubble gum, and faint floral hops.

T: Lightly spiced with some cloves, nice combination of fruit with banana, apple, and a hint of lemon. The Belgian yeast shows itself yet again along with some light hops.

M: Medium bodied, but seems a bit heavy for a tripel, but I like it. Sometimes I think that tripels are bit a too light. Nice carbonation with a nice overall crispness.

O: Very tasty with a great mouthfeel, extremely easy drinking and overall a very nice example of style.

Photo of afsdan
4.25/5  rDev -0.7%

Photo of ejimhof
4/5  rDev -6.5%

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

Warm day, swimming in the pool, and scarfing down pizza....time for a beer! 750 ml bottle shared with my friend, on to the beer:

Sundrop blonde color, a little hazy, with soapy suds on top the brew. Some retention here. The aroma brings joy to the nose. There is some refreshing citrus, but that is minor compared to the fruits and peaches I get. In the mouth, it is more joy. Freshly bought, jumbo colored bubblegum is the first thing to be tastred. The bubblegum sweeteness lightens up, though still sweet. Rolled oats, spicy, oranges, cream...mmmm, good. Very good. Bubbly and thick in the mouth, but gets a whisker lighter as its consumed. Mildly boozy and warming, but the affect looses intensity.

Oh my. I've had a number of chances to try this beer, but it wasn't until a late-night run at Total Wine last night which I decided to buy it. the wait is no more, and I am gald to have sampled it, and I'm happier to report I dig it.

Photo of wl0307
4.5/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Purchased at the Sainsbury's supermarket during its sale on Belgian bottled beers~~ BB 10/1/08, served lightly chilled in a tulip-shaped wine glass.

A: nice orangey-golden colour, coming with a medium-thick white frothy beer head with very good retention; the carbonation condition is just about right for a Belgian bottle-conditioned beer: gentle and constant, never overly fizzy.
S: harmoniously perfumy and fruity... the tropical fruit estery note comes colourful but light-bodied, on top of a constant stream of juicy (cake-ish) malts and grains with but a touch of candy-sugar; lots of fruit elements to discern (for fun): pineapple, green apple peel, banana, apricot, ripe fig, orange/tangerine peel, lemon blossom, Chinese green bean paste...all mixed together, while the lightly spicy yeastiness follows at each step, but plays the second fiddle to the main fruity theme. Everything is so softly threaded together by the perfumy string--just brilliant!!!!
T: creamy maltiness backed by smoothly fruity yeasty backbone lubricates the tip of the tongue, gradually more tartly-sweet fruity elements (mainly lemon-cake, pineapple and sugar-cane juice) expand on the palate, and bringing on board an exotic, Chinese green-bean paste like yeasty+malty+fruit-estery flavour which doesn't go large but lingers quietly and subtly at the back end of the tongue. A slightly herbal-sweet (slightly licorice?) but also dryish aftertaste of hops(?) and yeasts round off the palate in the very finish.
M&D: given the ideal condition of carbonation, the beer's creamy and soft texture is one of the most enjoyable for this style... The medium body and complex flavour against an almost non-existent alcoholic backbone makes this beer utterly easy to drink... If given a richer flavour profile this just might be an all-time winner, IMO!

Photo of Stinkypuss
4.05/5  rDev -5.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Tripel Karmeliet poured from a 22 oz bomber into a snifter. A hazed yellow in appearance with a huge frothy head and some lace stickage.

Aroma of Hay, Grassy Euro Hops (slightly skunky), along with fruity esters.

Flavor follows the nose with a nice fruitiness and twang. Some clean wheat/oat flavors present that bring out a real barnyard element. Fruity flavors mimic pear/granny smith apple. Moderate hop bitterness keeps everything in check, alcohol is well hidden in the complex flavors.

A very smooth and delightfully crisp mouthfeel.

Overall a treat to embibe in. Strong and great as a night cap.

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

Hazey pour. Light orange, golden topped with a good size white head. Good lacing, sticky and sweet.
Corriander, clove, lemon, some biscuit and pear round out the nose, which springs forth about 2 feet away.
Refreshing taste. Light orange zest and lemon. Yeast and biscuit in the middle. The end is sticky and crisp. Perhaps too light, but this would be good in the summer instead of during a snow storm that had thunder and lightning.

Photo of Zorro
4.22/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a clear golden brew.

Smell is big and fruity with lots of sweetness and pineapple and plum scents and a faint hint of medicine.

Taste is sweet and tart too with the expected coriander taste. Mostly the flavor of Granny Smith apples and plums comes through. The alcohol content shows itself as a nice warmth in your throat.

Mouthfeel is good.

Drinkability is good; this has a nice sweet sour and spice balance that goes down well.

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

Poured from the bottle into a tulip glass at Pizza Pardiso Dupont DC.

Gorgeous white rock head off the pour, and giant clumps of retention and white foam. Gorgeous orb of lemon shine body, slightly cloudy with rising carbs. This beer just glows it looks amazing.

Bouquet is a sense of crisp gas and muted lemon with a hint of some sort of grain husk coming off. Refreshing and solid.

Taste is some sort of grain and yeast at first but so nicely balanced and refreshing. I hate to keep repeating that word "refreshing" but that's all I keep thinking about when I drink this. Fantastic white soda bread feel on finish, hints of sweetness and honey blossom.

Overall it's just another satisfying tripel to be had.

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 chinchill
4.23/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Tulip glass from a tap at Barley's in Greenville SC

A: Pours a bright, pale honey/golden color, with a small-to-moderate size, exceptionally creamy head. Head has good retention, at least as a ring.

S&T: Light and fruity, although no specific fruit comes to the fore. Clove and banana elements, but less pronounced than in some tripels. Honey too. The aroma is a bit boozy, but in a positive way ... think fine brandy or liquer.

M: Very smooth, with a bit of alcohol warming. Nice, light carbonation.

Overall: One of the best tasting tripels I have ever had. Complex and flavorful, but not challenging. Very refined. Makes an excellent sipper, and I took a good long time to finish my serving, enjoying every sip.

Photo of jdhilt
3.9/5  rDev -8.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

From my notes 6/1/2007 On-tap at Brasserie Chagall in Brugge, Belgium, 330ml tulip glass for €4.10 ($5.62). poured with a one-finger white head that fades to a slim head leaving a trace of lace. Clear amber color. Strong carbonation and medium bodied. Balanced nose. Flavor is sweet to balanced. Slight bitter finish. Imported bottle is better.

Photo of brandoman63
4.25/5  rDev -0.7%

Photo of tdm168
4.35/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A - clear gold with a big, white head that has great retention

S - lemongrass, faint spice

T - banana, cream, faint spices, lemon

M - medium to full bodied, well carbonated

This was a great Tripel. It was complex and refreshing. The abv was well hidden. This was dangerously easy to drink. I really enjoyed this beer.

Photo of BillRoth
4.25/5  rDev -0.7%

Photo of rab53
4.25/5  rDev -0.7%

Photo of iL0VEbeer
4.5/5  rDev +5.1%

Photo of atrocity
4/5  rDev -6.5%

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

Pours a nice clear amber/orangy color, nice carbonation, nice creamy off-white head, nice lacing throughout the drink. The nose is of malts, slight hops, yeast, spices, and pears/apple, grapes. The taste is slightly tangy/malty, nice not overly spicy. Medium body. Very drinkable, a very tasty tripel, one of the bes I've had to date.

Photo of biegaman
4.65/5  rDev +8.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

Purchased at Premier Gourmet in Buffalo, capped 330ml bottle, wonderfully illustrated bottle art, lots of detail everywhere you look.
'A three grain beer, still brewed according to a 17th century recipe' it reads in both French and English. A best before of 12/07/07, so I would assume this has sat for some short time before now. I realized only once I got home they had charged me almost $10 more for the 750ml. Oh well, not quite worth my while to drive back - hopefully it will be worth it anyways!
Cap opens with a loud sizzle, some mist rises. Poured perfectly, large suddy head rises to a level of two fingers, tampers off slowly to the level of one. The little bubbles sparkle in the glass like the blowing bubbles that children blow. A very hazy and pear coloured body. Bubbles and lacing to boot.
A zestful and rich aroma. A huge deal of malt - lots of malt - and very piquant, nose-tickling hops. Very spicy phenolic, nice yeastyness too. Hints of mango. Banana. Awesome, powerful.
A very smooth mouthfeel. Alcohol stays under the radar, but still plays some part in the mouthfeel. Extremely well balanced malt bill, the pale malts smooth out the body very well.
Flavours offer a spicy citrus notes (orangy, tangerine like). The yeast subtly sneaks in there too. An awesome malt bill, wow. Delicious. unlike other tripels, not overly boozy for its body. if anything, too drinkable.
Vibrant, slightly unique character, great, tasty recipe, melodiously balanced - very easy to see how this is hailed a world-class tripel. Certainly among (if not, the) best of the style I've tried to date.

Tripel Karmeliet from Brouwerij Bosteels
95 out of 100 based on 3,407 ratings.