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Trappistes Rochefort 8 | Brasserie de Rochefort

1,877 Reviews
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Trappistes Rochefort 8Trappistes Rochefort 8

Brewed by:
Brasserie de Rochefort
Belgium | website

Style: Belgian Strong Dark Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 9.20%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by BeerAdvocate on 10-12-2001

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Reviews: 1,877 | Ratings: 5,116
Photo of weeare138
4.82/5  rDev +12.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Appears a red toned mahogany color with a fluffy light tan head that slowly fades out. Chunks of streaky lacing are left around the glass.
Smell is of figs, cocoa, brown sugar, molasses, bananas, plum, and raisins that are mixed into a sugary batch of yeasty cake and spices.
Taste is of the same aromas that come together nicely.
Mouthfeel is slightly carbonated up front but finishes with a warming molasses and cocoa touched alcohol bite.

Edit 11/26/06: Opened up a fresher bottle next to a Westy 8. The Westy barely edged it out IMO but this one is just so nice and complex that it's hard live up to something like that. I found the Westy to just be a bit more smooth. Pricewise??? C'mon, there's no need to argue. I think I paid $4.50 for this bottle and I think the Westy was $18.

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Photo of elricorico
4.27/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours very dark brown with a tan head. The head is not very thick, and fades some, ending up as a thin cap.

The smell is full of ripe banana, berries, raisin and a touch of alcohol. Altogether a very enticing mix.

The taste is heavy on malt, plenty of caramel sweetness. Berries also make an appearance up front. I find a lingering finish of burnt molasses. Alcohol is apparent, though not as strongly as the 10. Taste really blossoms as it warms, becoming much more full.

There is some weight to the beer, but I find the carbonation a bit prickly. Overall mouthfeel is above average though.

A very nice beer, though I think I prefer the 10 in the end. This one is very sensitive to temperature. If it is a touch too cold it is quite disappointing.

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Photo of Bitterbill
4.35/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from 33cl bottle(best by 07/08) a cloudy dark brown with a large head of foam that dissipated slowly leaving a fine layer with lots of lacing.

The smell is fruity and yeasty with strong notes of plum and fig.

The taste has sweet malt up front and fruity notes, mostly plum, midway through and right through the finish. There's also some molasses tones that I noted in the Rochefort 10 but here, in comparison, they are much subdued. And.... the abv doesn't come in to play at all. This is one very tasty BSDA!

Bottom line: A very tasty brew of its style that I can thoroughly recommend!

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

When first poured, it showed a nice medium dark hazy brown with some tight tan foam with a medium amout of lace of the side of the glass.

The smell of roasted malts, along with spices and fruit filled the nose with a pleasant aroma.

The taste was kind of average, until it slighty warmed up and then the true flavor of roasted malts, spices and fruit really became evident. I kind of got just a hint of toffee/caramel at the very end.

Finally, this ale had a hint toasty toffee/caramel with layers of soft malts and hops. A very nice beer without being heavy. Extremely well-ballanced.

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Photo of ghostwalker
4.32/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

33cL bottle poured into new style Rochefort chalice. Label stamped 08 09 04.

Body is reddish-brown with visible yeast floaters. 1 finger of surprisingly thin head.

Nose is spicy-sweet. Plenty of both, a real treat for the nose.

Flavor is rich and complex. Sweet, but not overly so like many Belgian brews. Spice is very much there. A rich dark malt with dark fruit contributions. Brown sugar. I get a distinct flavor of prunes in the finish. Slight astringency, may be traceable to ABV. No other hint of the true alcohol level. A brew of great nuances. I am in awe of the monks.

Mouthfeel is smooth and silky. Low to medium levels of natural carbonation. Some zip on the lip from the spice level.

Drinkability is much better than expected. I could sit and sip this all night, and every sip brings something new.

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Photo of dogfooddog
4.53/5  rDev +5.3%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Bottle dated 29.04.08; this bottle is 3 years 1 month old.

Pours 15% head into westmalle chalice. Dark, spicy, coriander-like nose, powerful and heavy.

Taste is heavy, sweet, and spicy, making the tongue tingle. I don't know if this beer contains spices but I feel coriander distinctly in the taste. It fades slowly, leaving a bitter malty flavor with some overhang of coriander. This particular bottle reminds me a lot of traquair jacobite.

Great beer, has improved greatly with age since this batch was purchased. At this age I do prefer the 6 or 10 better though.

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Photo of Phocion
4.55/5  rDev +5.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Poured into a Rochefort goblet, very deep, dark brown with just a hint of red. Fairly small, but very stubborn head flowed kept trying to flow over the edge of the chalice. Leaves excellent lacing on the sides of the glass. This thing just looks incredible.

The initial smell is fruity, with a sweet molasses and slightly malty scent trying to poke through. No trace at all of the alcohol or hops.

First sip... maltier than it smells, not nearly as sweet. Sort of a toffee taste. Hoppy undertone, but very light. The alcohol taste is also very well hidden, especially for a 9.2%. Gets more complex as it warms; it tastes both fruitier and maltier, and the alcohol eventually begins poking through, but it's still not overpowering.

Very smooth medium-body. Lots of carbonation.

I finished this glass in no time. If it wasn't for the price, I could pound back quite a few of these in one night, but at nearly 10% I'm not so sure that'd be a great idea.

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Photo of Absumaster
4.32/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This beer is so very much in balance, I expect this to be the result of years of experience and
Appearance was perfect, reddish brown color with a stable head and a steady stream of carbonation.
Smell was herbal with some chocolate notes, also some clove and anise smells.
Taste was fresh, non sticky , pretty hop bitter and maltbitter, the chocolate malt was very apparent. Alcohol is hidden perfectly, but certainly warmes the throat. Oooh what a perfect balance!! Prickly from the carbonation
For some reason this does not seem to be the same beer, I tasted a couple of years ago. This beer used to have a little more body and was more outspoken. Nevertheless a good beer!

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Photo of haz77
4.48/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

A - Pours a dark brown with 2 inches of head which falls to form a thin layer. Looks to have low carbonation.

S - Some dark fruit, mild phenols, banana, sweet spice.

T - Sweet malts upfront along with mellow but nice dark fruits. Chocolate too. Mild phenols the spicy alcohol warmth in the aftertaste.

M - Medium body but feels smooth and rich. Medium carbonation.

D - Very drinkable for the ABV. Highly enjoyable and definitely worth a revisit soon.

Edit: 31 May 08

Have recently re-reviewed the 10, so thought it would be a good time to take another look at the 8.

A - Pours a deep reddish-brown with a foaming light-tan head. The 10 is definitely more opaque. Head drops to a thin film, but can be easily refreshed to about a finger depth.

S - Date, prune, vinous notes, chocolate, rum. A whisker off rating it 4.5 as it's not quite as good as the 10.

T - Immediately the vinous elements are out, but they're gently swept aside by the dark dried fruit. Chocolate flavour is in the background along with this and slowly creeps to the front towards the finish. Chocolate/toffee linger in the aftertaste. Absolutely no sign of the alcohol until right at the end of the aftertaste, when there's a slight warmth in the roof of the mouth. Very special.

M - Medium/full bodied. Becomes creamier and smoother the longer it's held in the mouth as the carbonation fades.

D - Too easy to drink. Alcohol is pretty much nowhere to be seen and a very moreish sipper. I'd rate the 10 as just a shade better, but both are absolutely superb beers.

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Photo of RedHaze
4.3/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Best by 110209.

Pours a hazy muddy brown with a dense two finger head, that fades slowly to a thick cap that never entirely fades, leaving behind a thick sheeting of lace.

Smell; lots of dark fruits present with figs and prunes, with some apples and pears. Molasses and chocolate are present, as well as a bunch of spices.

Taste; good malty sweetness with hints of chocolate and molasses, with a little bit of candied sugar. The fruits become more pronounced once this warms, with prunes, figs, apples and some apricots. This finishes with a bit of a peppery spiciness, and a touch of alcohol. Mouthfeel is medium to full bodied, and very easy to drink.

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Photo of PatYoda
4.33/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Rochefort 8. I love the 10, so let's see how this stacks up. Bottle dated 3/23/10 which means it was bottled 5 years before that...about 14 months ago. Pours a pretty dark copper color with a beautiful cream colored head that never fades and leaves tons of lacing. What is it with those Belgians and their excellent foam?

The smell is full of ripe fruit - much brighter than the 10 with some dark fruits like raisins, but also some apple and tropical fruit. The spicing is incredible - I don't know if they use any in the brewing process, but there is definite clove flavor in here probably from the yeast, and possibly others, maybe some cinnamon. I get some vanilla too.

On tasting, the complexity of this beer is incredible. The malt manifests itself in that great ripe fruity flavor, some breadiness, and cookie dough. The spiciness which I smelled is there in spades, along with some vanilla. Brown surgar makes itself known. Just an incredible taste. Unfortunately it is marred by some detectable alcohol, as other reviewers have noted. As the beer warmed, I felt that the alcohol taste wore off, perhaps because my palate got used to it, but it definitely dropped my rating from a 5.0 to a 4.5 here, as it keeps me from enjoying the otherwise excellent finish of this tasty masterpiece. Another negative note is the too-thin body. If the thickness were boosted just a little bit, this would be incredible. I will still certainly be purchasing much more.

Note: yeast pour doesn't affect the taste much and adds slightly to the body. I recommend pouring it in immediately.

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Photo of beertastegood
4.25/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pours a very dark amber with massive carbonation - the head continues to rise long after the pour and actually over the edge of the chalice. Aromas of cherries, raisins, caramel, pepper, licorice, and toffee, with a rumlike alcohol smell as well. The head just does not want to quit: retention like meringue.

Taste: Incredibly complex spiciness at first, which mellows into a caramelly sweetness, and then fades into a slightly alcoholic finish, leaving a drying sensation on the palate from the carbonation and a hint of hops. Think classic Belgian yeast flavors, but without any one spice flavor poking out - it all melds together so that it is hard to define one particular dominating flavor.

Mouthfeel: medium body, high carbonation.

Drinkability: As Belgian strong darks go, this one is easy to drink. If you like spicy esters, this is a great beer for you.

Glad this beer made its way down to Texas, and glad I finally decided to pick one up.

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Photo of kosmoraios
4.6/5  rDev +7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

An exceptional example of my favorite style. Pours a dark chestnut with glints of ruby. The off-white head is perfect - not small, not overly large. Aroma is immediately of bready yeast and ripe, dark fruit. Plum, caramel, perhaps some banana bread are evident in the taste, with maybe some dark grapes. The taste grows more complex as the ale warms, bringing out flavors too numerous to begin to describe. As far as mouthfeel, the phenolic oilyness makes a perfectly smooth balance to the ample carbonation. Excellent ale. Very drinkable, except that more than a few pints of this will leave you on the floor.

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

Deep purple-ish brown in color, big rocky white head. A wealth of aromas unfold: fruity esters, moderate spice, malt, alcohol. Spicy malt is at the fore, mingling with creamy caramel and then a good dose of alcohol heat, giving balance. Chocolate and toasty malt also figure into the finish. The alcohol begins to warm the body's core. By mid-glass, the lively carbonation has subsided nicely, lending a smoothness that complements the harmonious flavors of this fine beer.

Not quite the powerhouse that Rochefort 10 is, but there's still very little to complain about here.

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Photo of GClarkage
3.77/5  rDev -12.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

05/08/06- Purchased at Jackson's Wine and Spirits in Lafayette, CA.

Presentation- 11.2oz bottle with a best by date of '07. Had this for about two years now. Poured into my Rochefort chalice.

Appearance- Murky pond scum color. Not sure how to describe it. I guess on the thick brown side. Bits of brown yeast that looks like, as my wife describes it, as tobacco spit. Good likening there. Bottle overflowed as it opened, but didn't lose any of it. About a 3/4 inch head topped of the glass nicely. Head dies down soon and really doesn't leave much of any lacing.

Smell- Malty mixture of caramel, dark fruits, nuttyness and some dark chocolate.

Taste- Extremely mellow. Dates and raisins with a lightly alcohol soaked taste. Kind of a milk/dark chocolate mixture. Kinda thin though. In fact much more than I thought it would be.

Mouthfeel- A bit watery, but super smooth. Really low carbonation level.

Drinkability- Was a bit disappointed, but it's still above average. I would buy several others over this one, but would in no way, shape or form, turn one down if offered to me. For the $5 I paid for it though, seems like I was a bit let down.

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Photo of Boilermaker88
3.95/5  rDev -8.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Presented in an 11.2oz bottle bearing a 29.06.10 date on the label. Poured from said bottle into my St. Bernardus chalice. Had a murky dark brown color, ruby edges, modest carbonation and a thin bubbly light tan head that settled out at a thin cap.
Heady alcohol fumes are the first thing I catch as I park my nose in the glass. Also lots of yeasty malt, dates, figs, molasses, and what might have been nutmeg and a hint of cinnamon. Smells like a rum-soaked fruitcake.
Hmm, tastes like it, too. Long-lasting and strongly entrenched malt bill along with tons of dark fruit flavor. Lesser doses of yeast than in the nose. Moderate spices and even smaller amounts of dark chocolate flavor bring out a subtle hops bittering that's rather overwhelmed by the rush of alcohol that warmed the throat with each swallow. Feel was lighter than expected and a tad watery.
Overall, a fine beer worthy of it's pedigree. While BSDA's aren't my favorite style, I do recognize the excellence and craftsmanship exhibited in brewing this beer. Quite nice.

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Photo of EvilKeith
4/5  rDev -7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a hazy, murky dark brown to deep amber color. Head starts as a busy finger and a half of sudsy tan foam. Head fades to a cap. Lace is suprisingly thick and sticky, for the higher ABV.

Smell is apricot juice, sweet dark molasses, bubblegum, and the alcohol is well hidden. As it warms the alcohol asserts itself more boldly.

Taste is malty goodness, a somewhat semi-sweet dark fruitiness, a bit of dry bitter finish and the ever warming alcohol.

Medium bodied, a little thinner than I had expected for the style. A wine-like mouthfeel.

Overall, damned good. I could see myself sipping a few of these around a roaring campfire. Excellent as a mellow nightcap. The complexity is something to be enjoyed.

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Photo of ktel
4.62/5  rDev +7.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours large, lasting head, slowly giving way to layers of lace. Hazy dark ruby/brown. Forward, sweet aroma, predominantly anise & molasses. Also shows sassafrass/earth, candied orange, raisin, and some alcohol as it warms. Flavor is complex malt. Rich, robust licorice/maple/molasses. Malt balanced with dark candi sugar, smooth, even, and lasting. Flavors and aromas mature as it warms in the glass. Fantastic. Can’t (afford to) drink enough.

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Photo of Metalmonk
4.46/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I chose this beer as my 100th review, because it's just so damn good.

Abundant bubbles form an airy, thick tan head that retains very well. Body is a deep chocolate brown color. Big walls of lace as the glass emptied.

Smells of toffee, caramel, raisins, all malt characteristics obviously, with an ever so slight presence of hops and a slight whiff of alcohol lingering underneath. I just wish the aromas asserted themselves more. I find the same aroma-timidness with the T.R. 10.

The flavors? Unbelievably tasty. There's chocolate, caramel, banana and raisin at the forefront, with roasted malt and toffee coming just before a superbly dry finish. Roundness in the mouth, velvety smooth with enough fizz to give some depth as I resist swallowing. (I don't want it to end!)

I think I prefer the 8 to the 10. The 10 favors the alcohol to the point where it's a little too obtrusive, while the 8 has deep and satisfying flavors while masking the alcohol. For such a high ABV beer, this is supremely drinkable. World class stuff.

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Photo of CharlesRiver
4.33/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

33cl brown bottle with a green cap that says "8" on it. Another gift from my inlaws last Christmas. Pours out a beautiful dark copper-brown with a good size off white head that stays. The smell is mostly sweet with a tinge of sour in there as well.

Very effervesant in the mouth. Kind of explodes. Much lighter and delicate than I had expected. A bit chalky in the beginning and then the bitterness takes over. All of this mixed with raisins, dates, malt, sugar and a touch of alcohol. I really love how dry this beer ends, including the aftertaste. VERY easy to drink and refreshing.

This is my second Rochefort with my first being the "6". They seem to be very different tastes IIRC.

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Photo of artusory
4.73/5  rDev +10%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

This beer pours a dark brown with a slight reddish tint. A lovely creamy off-white head sits atop the body. Head gradually settles down to a thin coating across the surface of the beer that lasted as long as the beer did. Nice lacing, even in a tulip. Aroma is caramel, chocolate, cookies, some berries and dark fruit. Mostly sweet nose, but some roasted notes. Slight aroma of alcohol as well. Initial flavor is moderately sweet, cookie dough, milk chocolate, caramel, toffee, candi sugar, figs, and raisins. The flavors compliment each other quite well and are very balanced. The beer ends with warming alcohol, and a medium length, dry finish. This has an incredible mouthfeel, round, filling, very smooth and creamy. Lively carbonation dances on the tongue. Wonderfully complex, but without the hot alcohol that ruins the 10.

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Photo of Conrad
4.28/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Yum Yum Yum
A great beer experience. Poured into a genuine Rochefort glass, it was cloudy dark with a cushy two finger head, and long lacing as the beer went down.
Smell: gentle. A lot of complex flavours that an expert would have fun with. I picked up on deep roasted malt, fruits of various kinds, a bit of citrus, chocolate notes, and more I couldn't put my finger on.
Taste: Big upfront taste of all of the above. But still mellow considering the 9.2% ABV. There is no harsh alcohol effect at all. Very smooth. The finish is strong, with a nice lingering aftertaste.
Overall: Wonderful. If it weren't so pricey, I could make this my regular.

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Photo of wl0307
4.42/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

BB 09/11/10, served cool in a broad-rimmed goblet.

A: dark reddish brown hue, slightly hazy, coming with a thin beige cap and a semi-lively fizzy body.
S: soft base of creamy, toffeeish-malts, with a mildly perfumy, fruit ester and lily-like flower ester theme on the top; after a good swirl, a more perfumy brown-sugar and a ripe-plum+raisin+faintly black-cherries fruity hint comes forward, laced with a wee touch of ginger-sugar. The texture is ever so mellow; despite the 9.2%abv., the aroma is in such a harmony. Blissful - not "loud" at all.
T: a stream of assertive chewy dark malts, caramel and licorice hits the palate, slightly sharp and fizzy initially; gradually settling to a soft, toasted brown-bread like grainy malty undertone with more perfumy candy-sugar, a very light touch of treacle, hints of ripe dark berry-fruits and a wee bit of black-sugary gingery spice... The subtly bitter-sweet & elegantly spicy aftertaste is well-mixed, providing a lovely contrast to the lively foretaste dominated by the malts.
M&D: overall, the texture turns from slightly fizzy through mellow to the soft in the end, hiding its alc. strength only too well. I suppose the body would soften a great deal as it ages? It's hard for me to say this, but I find this Trappist ale an easy-drinking one!! It's reasonably delicious as it's complex, and doesn't bear any rough alc. edge as in some other samples in the same category. A fantastic beer this is, and I look forward to trying an "older" bottle whenever I see one~~

P.S. after writing the review above, I shook the residual yeast sediment and mix it into the beer. The smell gets dense and intensively perfumy with lots of esters. The palate gets a sharp, licorice and woody yeasty edge, and the whole experience turns more pleasant~~ though I also start to feel a bit dizzy, due to the yeasts...

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Photo of IronDjinn
3.85/5  rDev -10.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

From a small 330 ml brown bottle, green cap with an 8 on it.

Pours out a deep opaque brown, large nutmeg tinted head which drops to a 1 finger thick spongy cap. Aroma of fruitcake and citrus, especially tangerine rind, along with raisins, and a sweet battery malt.

Definitely more impressive flavour than the 6. Fig, dates and alcohol up front, and a long warm undercurrent of alcohol throughout. Sticky dark malts in the middle, which takes a turn towards spice towards the finish, and finishing with slightly charred wood, even a touch of peat. A rummy, oaky aftertaste that is quite pleasant, like having a shot of scotch to wash down a mouthful of Christmas cake. The mouthfeel is smooth but light, surprisingly light for the appearance and the bold flavours.

A pretty solid Belgian, I'd sample it again at a later date, but not as spectacular as all the hype has built it up to be.

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Photo of jmz62565
4.05/5  rDev -5.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

This pours a dark cloudy orange brown with a giant tan foamy head. The smell has a citrus hoppy aroma with yeast and dark fruit scents. The taste is dark fruit, citrus fruit, Belgian yeast,and a strong alcohol flavor. The m/f is medium with a balance of flavors thats perfect. This is an outstanding beer that shouldn't be missed.

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Trappistes Rochefort 8 from Brasserie de Rochefort
96 out of 100 based on 1,877 ratings.