Westmalle Trappist Tripel - Brouwerij Westmalle

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Westmalle Trappist TripelWestmalle Trappist Tripel

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BA SCORE
96
world-class

4,080 Ratings
THE BROS
100
world-class

(view ratings)
Ratings: 4,080
Reviews: 1,641
rAvg: 4.3
pDev: 10.23%
Wants: 344
Gots: 558 | FT: 7
Brewed by:
Brouwerij Westmalle visit their website
Belgium

Style | ABV
Tripel |  9.50% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 11-06-2000

No notes at this time.
View: Beers (3) | Events
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 4,080 | Reviews: 1,641
Photo of sbrotschul
5/5  rDev +16.3%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Wow ... this might be a perfect beer! I wrote some notes down while tasting half of the bottle, and then looked at some of the reviews -- and I think that I am not alone in loving this beer.

I picked this beer up on the recommendation of the woman at a bottle shop in Belgium (store description and location, below). This woman is a saint! What a great recommendation.

Appearance: (5.0) The tulip glass looked amazing with the gold color of the beer and eggshell head from the Triple.

Smell: (5.0) Hints of citrus, a little pepper and some apple. As the beer warmed, the smell became more pronounced.

Taste: (5.0) A good spice came through ... very nice. A small amount of alcohol.

Mothfeel (5.0) Good malt with slight carbination.

Overall (5.0) This must be the gold standard for all Belgian beers.

*** Le Moine Austère ***
Just up the road from us in Beligum, is a wonderful bottle shop called the Austere Monk (I'll review it after BA adds it: Le Moine Austère, Rue Dorez 8, Tournai, Belgium) (a review: http://www.monnuage.fr/point-d-interet/le-moine-austere-a41282). My wife and kids found the shop while touring the Grand Place and visiting the Christmas village. The family was excited to bring me to the store and even sent a few photos of the wall of bottles.

As I looked at the selection, I instantly wished that I knew more about Belgium beers. I understand a little French and shopkeeper was willing to bring to me some of the local beers and the traditional favorites. (Side note: it is *very* helpful to have a wife that speaks and understands French!) She pointed out which beers were still made by monks (down to five, she said), and those breweries which tend to create craft beers. She loves to make gift baskets, filled with beers, glasses and other treats. I can't wait to return!

Photo of Albinoh
4.82/5  rDev +12.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Nice presentation, initial rocky head that settles to a lasting lace, some clings to the glass as the beer goes away. Turbid body, brownish-orange. Citric/lemon alcoholic aroma. Crisply and malty upfront with a yeasty sweetness following. Crispy but not extremely crispy. Medium smooth body. Bitter ending that stays in your mouth for long time.

Very nice, very well balanced, those monks really know what they are doing.

Photo of myelo
4.81/5  rDev +11.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Very hazy light butterscotch appearance with bright white, rocky head and millions of tiny bubbles. Sticky lacing.

Fresh fruit sweet aroma -- caramelized banana, orange, with spicy cloves and yeast.

Taste is fruity and malty sweetness up front, with some spicy phenol in the middle and lingering dank hop bitterness balanced by honey and plum and apricot sweetness.

Mouthfeel is beautiful -- creamy rich with high but very smooth carbonation and prominent ethanol warmth.

If someone asks what a Tripel is all about, this is what you have them try.

Photo of ENogueira
4.75/5  rDev +10.5%

11.2 oz bottle in a chalice glass. Yellow in color, with a thin head of foam, little lacing. The Westmalle Dubbel is one of my favorite brews, so I had very high hopes for this one, and it didn't disappoint. The sweet aroma of fresh fruit is top notch. The taste hits with sweet, ripe banana initially, then rush of earthy spices and herbs that blends in with perfection. The carbonation is excellent and the finish is hoppy but sweet, and very crisp. The alcohol is surprisingly under control for a 9.5% ABV, and it seems to linger a bit in the background. It's an amazingly engineered trippel. It seems that every Trappist-style ale that comes out of Westmalle is liquid gold. A must for any beer aficionado.

Photo of nmyers
4.45/5  rDev +3.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A- A nice cloudy orangish-yellow color, a nice white head on it with good retention.

S- Belgium yeasts, malt and apples & spices. I think I dectected a hint of Belgium candy sugars.

T- Crisp taste of malt and apples & spice right off the bat. Mellowing into a nice maltyness. An amazing after taste. No alcohol taste is present.

M- Great taste rigth of the bat, and the finish is great as well.

D- Very light body and goes down smooth. I wish I could drink this more often.

Photo of charlesbyrd
4.61/5  rDev +7.2%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from the characteristic 11.2 oz brown bottle into a footed glass (wish I had a goblet for this one).

A: Pours a pale amber with a nice haze to it and some noticeable "floaters." The head overwhelms the glass at the beginning at over three fingers in height. Soapy white bubbles both large and small form the tight-knit head that simply doesn't want to go away--by the time I'd finished half the beer, I still had a good finger of head resting at the top of the brew. No notable lacing present. Quite effervescent, a steady stream of carbonation helps to keep the sizable head aloft. This is a stunning looking beer.

S: Nothing overpowering in the nose, but there are several distinguishing notes. The first is that of sourdough bread, followed by a familiar combination of lemongrass and spices. Very tempting for the drinker.

T: The taste follows the aroma, but the profile is a bit more magnified. There's a nice yeasty bread quality, along with a slight hint of booze. Then, as with the smell, another familiar combination: orange peel, coriander, and faint honey. At first, hops are only an afterthought, but as the beer warms, some nice herbal hop notes show up and balance out the list. Not too sweet, and not bitter at all. On a side note, this beer reminds me so much of a really good hefeweizen (Weihenstephaner, maybe?) with it's fruity/spicy pairings. It's the best example I can relate the taste to.

M: Light to medium-bodied with a sticky texture on the tongue. Finishes quite dry and crisp with a peppery bite, along with some warming from the alcohol. Very aggressive carbonation creates a very refreshing sensation.

D: One of my new favorite beers. Very complex flavor profile, but so smooth and easy to just drink and enjoy. For a high ABV beer, the alcohol is very well hidden and doesn't detract from the tasting experience. Highly recommended.

Photo of fairdinkum2
4.08/5  rDev -5.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Ah those canny monks! So doing God's work means making beer? I'm on the other side of the wall, so doing God's work is drinking it. I do what I can.
Here it is, the middle of winter, and I'm drinking a beer I think is perfectly suited to summer. Also paired this with a very spicy meal and the combination was perfect. Great counterfoil.
Plenty of head when poured from the bottle, but not too much carbonation on the tongue.
Aromas of sour oranges, bread and even ginger.
Wow! that taste. Very long finish with a very pleasant bitterness that carried from the mid palate to the back. Clean, very crisp finish. Did not sense the sweetness that other reviewers found, but no loss there.
I could put a lot of these away on a warm day.
My first exerience with this beer. Won't be my last.

Photo of shoop12
4.97/5  rDev +15.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Slightly lighter in appearance than most Tripels drank recently with a nice cloudy golden hue and 1 finger white head.

The aroma is very refreshing with a touch of malt but overall hint of yeast and fruitiness.

Taste is out of this world with the sweetness of the malts quickly fading and touches of pear and yeast quickly building with a refreshing, smooth, and crisp finish for a Tripel with 9.5% ABV.

To me, this beer is at the top pf the list for Tripels. It exemplifies the perfect combination of malts, yeasts, and hops.

Truly world class!

Photo of Roderick
4.58/5  rDev +6.5%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

The pour was a absolute delight! A fine golden hue with tiny bits of sedimented floating about in the bubbles of a GRAND head.The smell of citrus and maybe the hint of alcohol along with the very subtle spices of fine trappist work.
The tastes is exquisite with malt and little honey taste that matures into a lemony-orange citrus. Very smooth and rather crisp.
It was truly worth the $4.99 I paid for a 330ml bottle, its a nice relaxing-cheese eating kinda brew. I'm gonna stock up!

Photo of bigflatsbeerman
4.65/5  rDev +8.1%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Appearance -Brownish yellow not light in appearance more to middle dark tint. Poured from 750 ml corked bottle into my Chimay chalice. Half a finger head (abv being 9.5% means less thick head).
Smell - What hits me the most is a sweet white grape smell.
Taste - Very nice sweeter taste similar to scent (white grapes). Nice dry finish. This is an exceptional well crafted beer. I can smell and taste the alcohol, but in a good way.
Mouthfeel - Medium fair amount of carbonation.
Overall - World class beer (period).

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

A: hazy golden color, big fluffy bleach white head that lasted and left nice lacing.

S: clean, restrained bright citrus fruits and grain.

T: much like the smell, very clean and refined. Nothing jumps out at you in a big way, but the level of flavor refinement is much appreciated and respected.

M: well carbonated, very light and refreshing on the palate. Hard to hold back on this one!

D: Need to be careful with this one, beyond drinkable. Alcohol was nearly undetectable, so light and refreshing. Really easily could get in too deep with this trappist. Will be seeking this guy out again, thats for sure.

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

A - Poured into my favorite tulip glass. It would be hard to have any gripes about the appearance... Golden color, nice foamy head that stays for a bit then retreats to the edge of the glass with lacy haphazardly shaped continents. Spin the glass like wine and the head reappears! Yeast is suspended and swirls around in a random nature with the carbonation. Several streams of bubbles form and seems as if they would bubble forever if I could resist drinking the beer.

S - Smells like sour apples and lillies.

T/M - The immediate taste is crisp and somewhat dry with a sour bitterness that blends well with spiciness. If I were to guess the ABV, I would think it were around 7%. The sourness, while not being overwhelming, seems to melt the taste of alcohol away. The flavor of the beer almost serves as a chaser.

D - This is the kind of beer that I could drink at almost any time - I am ecstatic that this is brewed year round.

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

Somewhat of a yeasty champagne on the nose, malt and apple as well. On the palate, spicy combined with some green apple tartness and the champagne grape and dryness fills the middle. The spice is pepper and maybe even some clove but the malt provides a nice balance to that, all wrapped up in a creamy mouthfeel.

This is a really tasty ale, something I could drink all the time. It almost makes me want to become a trappist monk just so I could get this from the source. Except my ADHD would make the whole chanting/prayer thing hard to focus on. Oh well.

Photo of Mattygross44
2.49/5  rDev -42.1%
look: 3 | smell: 2 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.25 | overall: 3

Cant get on the bandwagon hype just a little to fruity for me and sweet

Photo of RedBeerHead
4.52/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Pours cloudy, light orange. Cloudy, opaque head. At first look the body seems heavy due to the yeast but the taste is surprisingly light. Good fruity flavor. Good dry yeast aftertaste. The ABV is a slight “kick in the head” but still one of the more sophisticated and complex Trappists I’ve had.

Photo of AleDrinkToThat
4.92/5  rDev +14.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

I've had a good friend harping on me to get my hands on a Trappist ale any way I could (the availability SUCKS in southern MS, and the closest good import selection is in New Orleans). So, I chose the Westmalle Tripel, and I'm planning on tracking down some Rochefort and Orval later down the road...and maybe the ever-elusive Westvleteren, if I can ever find it in the States. On with the Westmalle...

Appearance: Slightly hazy pale orange hue under a perfect 2-3 finger frothy head, which laced very well as I sipped.

Smell: Delicious harmonic smell of golden apple, yeast, tropical fruit, coriander, and hops.

Taste: The most complex tasting beer I've tried. The fruity esters, sweet malt, and yeast hit immediately, and while the alcohol content is up there, it isn't overbearing at all. My 'sweet' taste buds just lit up. And as it went down, more flavors kept coming, like honey. I could still taste honey a full ten minutes after it was all gone. Pretty amazing.

Mouthfeel: It's a bit like a sparkling wine with a low carbonation. As the flavors bounce all over the mouth, the alcohol does its warming work. The sweet flavors are so intense that it left me salivating and wanting more.

Drinkability: This is a highly drinkable beer which should be sipped slowly and savored. Be warned, though: it will spoil you if it's one of your first craft beers. It's so complex, so expertly brewed, you will appreciate it more if you've gotten some time in with more beers before trying it. Trappist ales aren't so highly praised for nothing, as I've discovered.

Photo of jamiejohnson
4.46/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

One of the best when you're in a Tripel mood. Makes you wish you were sitting in one of those easygoing Belgian cafes watching the locals. Perfect balance of malt/hop to counter the 9plus alcohol presence.

Drink'n two
'll cause a ripple
Gotta watch out
It's a Tripel!

Photo of Tomhet
4.92/5  rDev +14.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

From the outset this thing is generating a massive, bright white head the dissipates at a crawling pace, leaving chaotic patterns of lacing all over the place; I love it. Appearance is a murky golden tinge that gives the impression that you're in for a treat. Aroma is absurdly refreshing: spiced cloves, cherries, figs, some green apple, obvious Belgian yeast, with some nice malt presence (I can't really describe the "neutral" character of the malt note I'm picking up, to be honest; it just provides some wonderful balance).

Yeast is the theme of the night. The first phase of the sip is a subdued version of what is to come: a snappy, fruity, bready combination that takes a second to hit full force but does so with impunity around the middle of the tongue. In some ways the taste is a bit more yeasty and bitter than the nose would suggest, but if you really dig for that miasma of spicy fruits, you'll find them in absolute harmony with the yeast and malts. Also worth noting is the ever-so-slight alcohol burn near the finish that is just enough to be consistently pleasing, especially in this season. Carbonation is fairly high and contributes to the "snappy" character of the beer, and it complements the smoothness of the brew perfectly. Overall, this is incredible and precisely what a tripel should taste like. Get at all costs.

Photo of stulowitz
4.37/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Appearance - clear dark golden with thick bubbly white head.

Smell - mmm, floral honey, slight pineapple, little coconut, quite the forplay!

Taste - WOW, fizzy freshness turns into big taste and warms up the mouth.

Mouthfeel - very comfortable, alot of carbonation, less would probably make the beer too heavy.

Drinkability - this beer does a good job at hiding the alcohol. Makes it all too tempting to have a few too many!

What can I say, one amazing ale!

Photo of lifebeer
4.7/5  rDev +9.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

wow. this is definitely my favorite Belgian.

a. slightly hazy straw color with extremely white head, looks a lot like a weissbier

s. smells like a weissbier, lemon and wheat

t. intense lemon, with wheat and alcohol, tastes like sustenance, a satisfying meal

m. rice and round, perfect

d. the most drinkable Belgian ever experienced, among my top beers of all time

Photo of JoshuaJ
4.84/5  rDev +12.6%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

What can anyone say that hasn't already been said? This is a super complex, ridiculously refreshing and ultimately wonderful beer.

Pale gold, sediment falls to the bottom of the glass. Head is two, almost three fingered, retention is excellent.

The scent is hoppy, citrusy, spicy. I smell a lot of lemongrass.

The hops come out at first, quickly fade into a sweet malts. Alcohol kick at the end. As it warms, the bitterness fades, and the alcohol comes out even more.

Mouthfeel is very smooth. Leaves a nice, wet aftertaste that stimulates the taste buds and lingers for a while.

Photo of Nuke77
4.5/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours a beautiful light golden hazy color with a super head of white. The smell is bread and lemony goodness. Lots of floral, fruit and yeast on the taste with some dry hoppiness on the finish. Great carbonation and dryness leaves a very clean feeling on the tongue. I can see why this is the Tripel standard. Excellent brew.

Photo of midworken
3.64/5  rDev -15.3%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured an extremely large, feather-light head. A hazy, straw colored body presents itself once the head dissipates.
The astringency and hoppiness present themselves in the aroma as onions and paint. It is such a lovely smell (sarcasm), and it is hard to get past it. There is a malt backbone, as well, but it is overwhelmed by the astringency and smell of alcohol.
Thank God you don't taste whats in the aroma. Alcohol is still there, but it isn't paint or onions. There is, however, a great balance between the hops and malts.
Mouthfeel is a bit syrapy, but still very good. The taste lasts just long enough on the tongue, without leaving any weird aftertastes. It is a good beer, but doesn't make you yearn to take another sip that great beers will do.

Photo of ThirdCoast
4.63/5  rDev +7.7%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Serving Type: 11.2 floz Bottle pored into a glass

A:Lovely orange yellow color with particles floating about.

S:Citrus, Bananas, spices, a complex aroma.

T:WOW! The bananas come out, sweet.

M:Stings a bit, but not to much, slightly creamy.

D:This might be one of my favorite beers right now. So complex and easy to drink despite the 9.5%

Photo of TStandley13
4.23/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A- Great creamy white head with good retention. Appearance was a cloudy golden color, slight orange tinge.

S- Sweet tasting with a definite smell of alcohol. Very malty smelling.

T- Alcohol taste is present. A great mixture of spices and sweets. Almost a cidery type taste with a slight aftertaste of cinnamon.

M- Feels great. Good warming effect and carbonation.

D- Easy to drink, though alcohol taste can get to you after 3 or 4. Definetely enjoy this beer.

Serving type: bottle

Westmalle Trappist Tripel from Brouwerij Westmalle
96 out of 100 based on 4,080 ratings.