Westmalle Trappist Tripel | Brouwerij Westmalle

YOUR RATING = None |
BA SCORE
95
world-class
1,692 Reviews
BEER STATS
Reviews:
1,692
Ratings:
4,345
Avg:
4.27
pDev:
16.39%
 
 
Wants:
395
Gots:
748
For Trade:
4
Westmalle Trappist TripelWestmalle Trappist Tripel
BEER INFO

Brewed by:
Brouwerij Westmalle
Belgium | website

Style: Tripel

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 9.50%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by BeerAdvocate on 11-06-2000

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Reviews: 1,692 | Ratings: 4,345
Photo of digr
4.7/5  rDev +10.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A- Pours a cloudy dark yellow with a snow white foamy head into a chalice. Head slowly dissipates over about 4 minutes.

S - Smell is that of belgian yeasts, with a hint of fruit and a farmhouse style tinge... yummy, and not too strong. No real hops in the nose.

T - Taste is clean Pilsner, belgian yeast flavors and a very dry finish and hops on the palate. The dyness leaves you looking for the next sip! And this is a Tripel.

M - Mouth feel is good, countered by the dry effect. Normally in a tripel you are left with a coating. Not here.

D - Very drinable despite the 9.5% ABV.

This is a great tripel, and standard for sure. The dryness is amazing considering the high ABV. In some ways very simple, but deceptive in that the flavors are all mixed well with no flaws.

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Photo of jikvig
4.62/5  rDev +8.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Pours a cloudy green/gold colour with a nice, airy head. Much lighter in colour than my previous trappists.

Fruitdriven nose, with a component that could remind me of gras as well. Freshly baked cupcakes is also something I´m picking up (the yeast flavour), and a hint of chocolate.

A lovely sweetnes backed up by a big mouthfeel. Bitternes is also present, and a long lasting mouthfeel. Getting a spicy pepper component on the palate in adition to the aromas from the nose. Many layers of goodness in this bottle!

Conclusion
I´m a big fan of trappistbeers, with the "wide" variaties you can get from the 7 different monastery´s. This Westmalle gives the category a nice twist with it´s lighter, fresher style, with alot of taste. Would have loved to try this to some asian inspired food!

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Photo of Kala1073
4.45/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Tripels are one of my favorite styles and this one goes right up there with the best of them! It poures a golden wheat color with a nice thick white head. The aroma consisted of sweet malts, some floral aspects, and a little spice to it. The taste was just as good as the aroma. Although at 9.5%, the drinkability was scarily eeasy to consume. This is one of the best tripels I have had and will be having again!

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Photo of QuestionableScum
4.28/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pours a golden yellow colour, with pillowy white head, lacing looks excellent.

In the aroma I get banana, lots of spiciness, the characteristic belgian yeast smell, other light fruits, and alcohol.

In terms of flavour it starts out with lots of spiciness up front (has a somewhat peppery quality). There is also a very prominent sweetness that has a banana, apple and pear feel to it, along with elements of a slightly bready sweetness, that I am having difficulty describing. Overall it has a relatively dry quality, with lots of spiciness and enough fruity flavours to balance out the alchohol and spiciness. Excellent tasting beer.

Mouthfeel is excellent. Perfect amount of carbonation, and has a very crisp feel to it.

Drinkability is good, but again this is a beer to enjoy relatively slowly, not to chug.

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Photo of horshamguy
4.83/5  rDev +13.1%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

750 ml bottle poured into a Chimay chalice glass.

A--Hazy gold with a bit of an orange tint. Large, creamy head that lasts forever and leaves perfect lacing. As good a head as I've ever seen.

S--Sweet & yeasty. Some fruits, like apricot. Mild but still complex with a lot going on.

T--Sweet & malty. Apricot & yeasts are the upfront tastes to me. A little bit of hops follow to balance it out. Damn near perfection.

M--Wow, creamy & mouthfilling. Plenty of carbonation to spread out the flavors. I'd have to call the mouthfeel perfect, at least to my tastes.

O--This one is awesome. I've tried countless American Belgian style tripels. This is the one that they're all trying to be when they grow up. Absolutely as good as it gets.

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Photo of Bouncingsoul1682
3.82/5  rDev -10.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured into my favorite St. Bernadus goblet....rich golden color with a creamy head

Smelled of fruit and definite malt as well as a strong than expected alcohol odor

Although the alcohol was strong in the taste as well it was quite delicious, the strong maltiness was a addition to the flavor.

Excellent mouthfeel, not quite as bubbly as Duvel or the like

I would definitely have it again and again

A true compliment to the the style

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Photo of jamesm7485
4.75/5  rDev +11.2%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Amazing tripel, i wont rehash all the technical jargon here but it ranks as one of my top five ive ever tried, just very smooth easy to drink and a treat for all the senses. Nice light color with a quick to form reasonably long lasting head, one of my top Belgium's for sure and my top tripel

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Photo of JimTeal
4.99/5  rDev +16.9%
look: 4.75 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

What can I say that hasn't already been written? Every superlative applies, deep, complex brisk flavors emit from a wonderfully constructed and world class beer. Yes the Monks have hit it out of the park for 100 years with this one. In the last few days I've sampled Westvleteren XII, Rochefort 10 and just to spoil myself topped the trifecta with Westmalle's tripel. In case you are standing in front of the Belgian offerings at your specialty beer store, hurry up and pick one (or 2) up and get ready to enjoy. The other BA reviews of this beer are so accurate, I thought a little irrational exuberance was called for.

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Photo of wanker
3.13/5  rDev -26.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 2

Boy, I was disappointed in this one. Of course, I had high expectations going in, after reading the reviews here.

First the good news. The mouthfeel is outstanding. A fairly high amount of carbonation, but I like that. Very crisp finish. The appearance is also nice, a light amber with just a touch of cloudiness. A gentle pour generated almost no head, which is also fine with me, because I don't like to wait for a head to subside before I can start drinking.

Now the bad news. The alcohol taste is way too harsh. I know that alcohol can be masked better in 9% ABV Belgians, because Unibroue does it with theirs. No alcohol masking with this beer. To me, it tasted like a Duvel with a shot of Everclear poured into it.

This booziness destroyed the drinkability for me. If I want a boilermaker, I'll order one. Also, drinking just one 330 ml bottle gave me heartburn and a slight hangover, which never happens to me when drinking a similar size bottle of other 9% brews.

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Photo of amneziak
3.87/5  rDev -9.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: The Westmalle Tripel pours a slightly hazy golden color - very similar to what you'd see from a wheat beer. As with most of the other Trappist beers, this comes with about three to four solid fingers of light head with minimal lacing that disappears pretty quickly. You can tell this has a lot of effervescence by the onslaught of small bubbles swimming swiftly to the top of the glass.

Smell: Just as I had imagined, there is a lot of spice going on in the glass. There is an immediate blast of beautiful honeycomb that hits you first, and then it is quickly followed by banana and clove components on the back end. For me, the real joy comes out of feeling like I've just stuck my nose in the middle of a fresh honeycomb. On top of what is immediately noticeable, there is a very faint amount of funk that sits way in the back of the nose. This becomes more evident as the beer begins to warm.

Taste: I guess one of the best things a beer can do is taste like it smells, and this certainly does just that. Surprisingly enough the honeycomb component I get on the nose translates into the taste very well. I also taste the yeast along with the banana and cloves. In terms of the alcohol, I don't taste it as much as I thought I would but I certainly feel it about halfway through the bottle. And it's a small bottle.

Mouthfeel: Overall this is an extremely well-balanced beer in the mouth. Because of the style, the Westmalle has a lot of bite due to the sparkling qualities and the enormous amount of head. There is a perfect amount of bitterness, too, which is paired with a vigorous amount of acidity. Normally a beer like this would lean more toward the lighter side, but this one is easily approaching medium body.

Overall: Let's be honest, this isn't a mind-melting beer. However, it is classic in just about every way. I really love the honeycomb component the most and really like the way this baby smells. I am also a really big fan of the bitterness levels that I get from the Westmalle. It's not as unique as the Orval (which is still my favorite Trappist ale), but it is definitely a staple and quite enjoyable. It's proof that consistency is a very good thing.

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Photo of ivanwatling
4.35/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Appearance: Moderate head, reduces to froth after a couple of minutes. Yellow golden colour

Smell: wheat beer, active

Taste: rich, sweet, undeetones of bitterness, warming , floral aftertones, complex

Mouthfeel: Well balanced carbonation, floral aftertaste, delicate hoppiness

Overall: Very pleasant drink, lots to discover and savour

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Photo of Meganomiidae
4.37/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

A: Pours a thin pale head, that quickly dissipates. Beautiful, hazy liquid gold.

S: Deep scents. White grape, citrus, grapefruit, fresh grain, and a bit of funk on the end.

T: Just a hint of stone fruit initially, quickly giving way to a cacophony of other flavors. Pear and grapefruit give way to hefty sourdough maltiness. Flavor is mildly sweet, fading to a pleasant bitterness that lingers after the taste. Complex and beautiful.

Feel: Again, like liquid gold. A beautifully smooth sip with just the right level of carbonation.

Overall: My first true Trappist tripel, and I have to say, I'm impressed. Not like all of the non-Trappist "tripels" that I've had previously. A+, thank you for existing, monks of Belgium.

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Photo of leeenglewood
4.65/5  rDev +8.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

I acquired this bottle, 33cl,from a friend who had just been in Brussels so I assume this beer is fresher then most that are bought within the states. Poured a slightly dark golden color and possessed a head that lurked around for a few minutes. Taste was near nirvana with almost no hop being apparent but a perfect balance of the malt and hop was there not to make the sweetness cloying. Mouthful was a thick and was of thick and splendid malt making this beer extremely drinkable and almost addictive I wish I had permanent friends in Brussels to bring me samples of this fine beverage.

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Photo of stof0048
4.28/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Appearance: Mostly clear, golden color with little head that forms "islands" and little lacing.

Smell: Some alcohol, sweet smelling, yeasty and pleasant.

Taste: Wheaty, yeasty, sweet (candy notes), hint of anise with an alcohol finish.

Mouthfeel: very fizzy on the tongue, goes down smooth, a bit of a creamy feeling.

Drinkability: Great for winding down at the end of the night, could never get tired of this one!

Overall a great beer and would recommend it to anyone!

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Photo of derekmorris7
4.42/5  rDev +3.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A = great gold color with a nice thick head, nice cling on the sides prob due to the high abv

S = Clean smell with great fruit undertones

T = Again a clean taste with nice finish

M = Good cling and nice after taste

O = Great beer, very strong on the alcohol content but I like that part

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Photo of seabass87
3.58/5  rDev -16.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Served in corked-and-caged 1 PT 9.4 FL OZ bottle. Bottled on 16/11/10. Poured into chalice.

A- Glowing light orange body. Incredibly cloudy. Pour reveals 1 1/2 fingers of fizzy head that dissipates quickly.

S- Banana bread and orange peel form the base. Sharp notes of pepper and clean alcohol. Unsure of where this one is going.

T- Bananas, grapefruit and some other bitter citrus esters. Alcohol. The yeast is lively and spicy, as opposed to the bread-y taste one might expect. Not a mild taste. The alcohol is not hidden. A fair amount of pepper and spice. Bitter and slightly metallic in transition, and a bit medicinal. Some pine-y hops come at the close.

M- Light bodied with a good amount of carbonation. Finish is very dry.

O- I know this beer is pretty much universally lauded, but I found it to be just OK. It does have a stronger, more complex taste than many tripels. Not bad, but I'd take a Chimay White or a LFDM over this any day.

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Photo of dsprainman
4.62/5  rDev +8.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Wow. Excellent Tripel.
Pours a lively head of 2 fingers with a light straw colored body that is brilliantly evanescent. Smell brings to memory apples, pears, peaches. Taste is much more tart, an explosion of light fruit flavors. Mouth feel is very carbonated, complimenting the flavor nicely. Overall, one of the best tripels I have had, outstanding beer.

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Photo of Raebies
4.23/5  rDev -0.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Holding the bottle up to the sunlight, I can see the cloudy beer with little flecks of yeast floating around inside. Pale cloudy yellow in the glass, lots of light fizz that settles quickly forming a firm head. It smells very crisp and clean, light fruityness. Reminds me of orval, without the barnyard funk.

Perfect level of light sweetness, not as sweet as other tripels. Slight tang, but smooth tasting. The warmth of the alcohol comes through without a boozey flavour. It's fairly close to perfect.

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Photo of cjohnson
4.5/5  rDev +5.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours a cloudy pale orange / straw color with a nice three-finger-width head that likes to last. Lots of carbonation bubbles.

Smells fruity, spicy and yeasty. Apricots and bananas are present, as well as some darker fruit smells.

Sweet and just a little bit spicy with a bit of an alcoholic bite, but not overwhelming. Very strong banana flavors.

Pretty medium-heavy bodied mouthfeel. Kind of creamy, but very well carbonated which makes this quite drinkable.

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Photo of KaiMiller
4.42/5  rDev +3.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

I have two different bottles of this of two different ages. From their website, I understand that the best-before date is three years after the brew date, so they are one and four years old respectively.

I don't have two identical glasses, so the younger beer was in a Leffe glass and the older was in my dear Duvel glass. Served at about 5 degrees - 45 for yanks - and allowed to warm up to more civilised temperatures as we went.

Younger:
Appearance: sparkly, thick smooth head, small bubbles. yellow-gold, nice lacing
aroma: peppery, fruity, yeasty notes. good. as it warms, grassy hops coming out mildly - saaz? becomes sweeter and even spicier; becomes less balanced, but richer
flavour: light, peppery, balanced yeast notes. flavour develops well as it warms.
mouthfeel: light, sparkly effervescent


Older:
Appearance: Darker, amber-gold, practically no head, thicker, cloudier. soapy film of head would disappear if not for etching in the duvel glass. no lacing
aroma: heavy, floral, almost cloying. not as nice as the new bottle. as it warms, syrup and floral, candied, gaining a hint of peppery phenolics, nice balance, port-ish now. less cloying than when it was cold. the hops come out more now that its warm, very mellowed, not grassy at all. english?
flavour: sweeter, thicker. not as peppery or sparkly. the fresh-fruitness of the first has become heavier, brandied, syrup. like a nicely aged cream sherry. opens up as it warms. black pepper notes. yeastier. alcohol comes through.
mouthfeel: thicker, heavier, chewy.

In short: a well-crafted, beautiful tripel, enjoyable for different reasons at different ages.

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Photo of OMGTheyKilkenny
4.88/5  rDev +14.3%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

11.2 oz. bottle into a goblet.

A: Beautiful soft golden orange with a slight banana hue to the body. Extremely hazy to the point of being totally opaque; unique given the relatively light color. Pours 1 inch of fluffy, ivory/eggshell head, which remained for literally the entire 20 minutes it took me to drink this miraculous ambrosia. I rarely get excited rating the appearance of a beer, but 5 is frankly an understatement.

S: Very gentle, summery aroma of wheat and ale yeasts with a floral hop bouquet. Notes of citrus. Not an overwhelming smell, which really belies the robust flavor experience ahead. On a positive note, I barely smelled the alcohol, despite the high ABV.

T: First reaction: this is one complex freakin’ beer. Rich malts, wheaty sweetness, baked fruits, summery spice, and notes of brown sugar and banana provide enough strong flavors to hide the 9.5% alcohol (until you get to the back). Yeasty citrus matches the aroma nicely. Surprisingly, all the tastes going on in this beer actually work together in perfect concert. And THAT is what separates a true Trappist, the product of generation after generation of monks perfecting their craft, from well-intentioned imitators. Whereas a lot of “abbey-styles” can come close to reproducing the wide range of flavors, only the real deal can make them come together so flawlessly into a unified, concentrated taste experience.

MF: Smooth and luscious. Silky texture fills the mouth without coating it. Makes its presence known, but then goes down easily. Not nearly as syrupy as some heavy abbey-styles. Once again: this beer excels where others try and fail.

D: This is, frankly, beer the way it was meant to be. I gave it a 4.5 for S, because I wish there was more of it. Rated it a 5 for A, T, MF, and D, only because I couldn’t give it anything higher. 5 is too low. Show some damned respect. Full body sits surprisingly light. While the ABV is fairly well masked, it will eventually catch up. That said, I received a single bottle as part of a gift basket, but could easily see throwing back a four pack. Do yourself a favor and drink this beer right now.

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Photo of guinnessman
3.85/5  rDev -9.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3

I enjoyed this one in a wesmalle Trappist chalice. It poured with a frothy white head and a golden yellow huge.
With smells of citrus, vanilla, and a musty barn like aroma made it intriguing to me. The alcohol does prevail but does not overpower. There is also a hint of mint that I noticed after a few sips. The mouthfeel is a pleasant texture and a very smooth. A faint tickle as it flows over the palate.
A fine Tripel!

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Photo of timobkg
5/5  rDev +17.1%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Poured into a Duvel tulip, the beer was a clear golden color beneath a thick white head.

The aroma was a mix of bananas, cloves, and other spices, with a slightly sweetness.

The taste mirrors the aroma, providing a mix of bananas and spices, slight sweetness, along with the great complexity and depth that comes from the Belgian yeast.

The mouthfeel was effervescent and vibrant, the carbonation feeling playful on my tongue.

Tripels are not my favorite of the Belgian styles, but this beer completely blows me away each and every time I have it. It is the epitome of world class, and the absolute best Tripel I've had.

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Photo of aussielars
4.57/5  rDev +7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Hazy, golden coloured with a big head that leaves lacing on glass.

Slightly pungent, smelling of caramel, grass, plums and spice.

Tastes of (omg I'm in heaven) caramel, spice, peach and plums with a dry finish. Gets better and better as it warms up with a nice after-taste of alcohol.

Medium to full-bodied with lots of carbonation.

Unfortunately, I only bought one bottle, and it made me all warm and fuzzy inside. Yes, I want MORE!

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Photo of GeoffW
4.55/5  rDev +6.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured a nice copper color with a 1 inch head that styed around for quite awhile.

Smelled awesome, very complex. The alcohol was readily apparent.

Taste was again very complex with a little sweet and notes of all kinds of stuff coming through. I'll stick with 'delicious' for the sake of brevity.

Mouthfeel was exceptional despite the obvious presence of alcohol in the beer.

I could drink this stuff all day.

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Westmalle Trappist Tripel from Brouwerij Westmalle
95 out of 100 based on 1,692 ratings.