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Westmalle Trappist Tripel | Brouwerij Westmalle

YOUR RATING = None |
BA SCORE
95
world-class
1,703 Reviews
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

BEER STATS
Reviews:
1,703
Ratings:
4,381
Avg:
4.27
pDev:
16.39%
 
 
Wants:
401
Gots:
770
For Trade:
5
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User Reviews
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Reviews: 1,703 | Ratings: 4,381
Photo of JoshuaJ
4.84/5  rDev +13.3%
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.

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Photo of Nuke77
4.5/5  rDev +5.4%
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.

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Photo of midworken
3.64/5  rDev -14.8%
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.

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Photo of ThirdCoast
4.63/5  rDev +8.4%
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%

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Photo of TStandley13
4.23/5  rDev -0.9%
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

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Photo of Klgkenny
4.72/5  rDev +10.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a cellar temp bomber into a room temp pint glass.

Pour produces a fluffy two finger head topping a pale orange body. The body is cloudy, yet translucent. I expected it to be a bit darker, but it was still very nice.

Smells like apricots and pepper. Faint aromas of exotic fruits and a slight follow up of alcohol.

Tastes very bright. Tangy apricot and fruity tastes wash through the mouth. Pepper and ... and something pleasantly bitter. Finally warming alcohol. Oh so pleasant warming alcohol.

Feels bright and carbonated in the mouth. Crisp and peppery in the sinuses and the back of the throat. This feels like high octane champagne in the mouth.

Aside from the price and high alcohol, I could drink this all day. I'd love to, but as it is, I'll keep them for special occasions.

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Photo of fromage
4.38/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 3 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I've had trouble getting into Belgian beer until this one... I heard that Westmalle would soon stop exporting, so I picked up a few 330's from the store a month or two ago, saving a tripel for my girlfriend's risotto.

Appearance was nothing special. Huge, rocky head, but quickly dissipated and was soon nowhere to be seen. It's got wheat in it, right? Where's the head? Killed by the alcohol? Golden haze with a glowing aura, some small bubbles rising to the top.

Smell was amazing... so complicated I should probably have a few more to figure it all out. I smelled strong plums and black currant, slight smell of alcohol, but just barely. Cloves and corriander, a bit of citrus and pine.

Taste basically matches the smell. Subtler fruits, pears, a spicy bite. Slight bread in the background.

Aftertaste is clean, slightly dry, mostly corriander spice. Mouthfeel is medium, not too sticky. Cuts through fat. Definitely try it with a rich, rich risotto--with prosciutto and mushrooms!

Deceptively drinkable, no alcohol cringe. Quite complex. Keep count, though!

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Photo of Voss
4.77/5  rDev +11.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

This beer is THE Tripel. The monks invented it in Westmalle in 1934 and, in my opinion, they still make the best tripel in the world.
Beautiful intense gold color, big thick head (even if I had bottles that made tiny heads), a wonderful fresh smell of lemon and other ripe fruits (apricot), a great body and a fruity, malty taste greatly textured with perfect carbonation. You can't ask for more.
The first times I drunk Westmalle Tripel I thought it was the best beer in the world. Now I prefer Quads, but this is definitely a terrific and elegant brew.

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Photo of djsmith1174
4.25/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A: Translucent yellow with a gigantic white head that sticks around a while. Not much lacing to speak of.

S: Fruit, Belgain yeast, and slight citrus.

T: A little citrus at first. On to the sweet banana, esters, pepper and a hint of booze. Very tasty.

M: Medium with a dry kick. Well executed.

D: As good as I had expected it to be. Definitely a fine representation of a Tripel and one that I would recommend to others wanting to try a good one.

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

Poured from the bottle into my mouth. (I know...)

A - I am sad to say that I didn't have the option to pour this into a glass to see what it looked like. I am sure the head/lacing would have been extreme as it bubbled out the top as soon as I opened it (no I didn't shake it up).

S - unmistakably Belgium... sweet, malty

T - sweet up front, fruity and effervescent then dry finish

D - Beautiful Belgian tripel. Sold by the bottle where I got it... buy more than one if you are in the same situation.

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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 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 RABouffard
5/5  rDev +17.1%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Over my entire three week european excursion, this beer alone stands out as the best. It's like drinking honey from heaven. Heady Topper may be the only beer that I feel is superior to this beer, however it is hard to compare the two obviously.

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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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Westmalle Trappist Tripel from Brouwerij Westmalle
95 out of 100 based on 1,703 ratings.