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Westmalle Trappist Tripel - Brouwerij Westmalle

Not Rated.
Westmalle Trappist TripelWestmalle Trappist Tripel

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BA SCORE
96
world-class

3,646 Ratings
THE BROS
100
world-class

(view ratings)
Ratings: 3,646
Reviews: 1,578
rAvg: 4.3
pDev: 10.23%
Wants: 248
Gots: 317 | FT: 1
Brewed by:
Brouwerij Westmalle visit their website
Belgium

Style | ABV
Tripel |  9.50% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 11-06-2000)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Usefulness | Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Westmalle Trappist Tripel Alström Bros
Ratings: 3,646 | Reviews: 1,578 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of rowingbrewer
4.28/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

This beer poured a nice yellow color with a fluffy white head. the smell was nice strong belgian yeast and spice notes up front with a hint of bready grain in the back. the flavor was a bit of a let down afte rthe smell and appearance. The spice yeast flavors and the sweetness from the malts were pretty well packed i, but they were in a very narrow range of flavors. I don't know if i can explain it right. the mouthfeel was good, and overall a very good beer, but the flavor just seems to be in the middle somewhrere.

rowingbrewer, Jul 28, 2011
Photo of mikedotnet
4.4/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A - The body is a moderately pale and dense golden color with a thick foamy head that dissipates after a few minutes.

S - A very unique spicy (almost peppery) yet delicate banana aroma; very nice but quite modest when compared with other tripels.

T - Light, sweet, and refreshing to start; tapers off to a spicy and pleasantly boozy finish. Sip after sip, this one never ceases to amaze me.

M - Very mild carbonation (particularly when compared to other tripels) that dances on the tongue. Not too light and not too heavy; very refreshing.

O - Simply astounding. I would wholeheartedly recommend this one to anyone looking to try an archetypal tripel.

mikedotnet, Jul 25, 2011
Photo of grotonmarketguy
5/5  rDev +16.3%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Westmalle Tripel: The mother of all Tripels! This is a must try beer. The benchmark example in which all others must be judged against in the style of Tripel. What is a Tripel? It is the name given by Trappiste Monks to a Strong Top fermenting Golden Ale. It earns the name Tripel because it takes three times the amount of ingredients to make in comparison to the simple beers made at the Abbeys. The beer is bottle conditioned with yeast to evolve over time like a Champagne, and it really is very much like Champagne. In the first 6 months the beer will be very fruit forward showing more pear and apple flavors, from 6 months to a year it will show much more of the hop character, and after 1 year those two characters will marry into a perfectly balanced beer. The bottle I am tasting is Seven months old. Westmalle is 9.5% ABV It has an darker blonde to honey-like color and a fluffy white head with a lengthy retention. Aroma is a blend of bright aromatic hops and subtle spicey yeast esters. Amazingly balanced and showing a great hop presence here. Cereal grains and honey support a lovely bitterness that is long but not highly toned. Great interplay of flavors. Not one truly dominates. A truly dry and crisp beer showing perfect structure, body, and a very complex flavor profile. This beer would be a great alternative to Champagne. It has a very similar flavor profile to some grower Champagnes I have tried that tend to have a softer bitterness and focus more on rich fruit and bread dough aromas with biscuity flavors.

grotonmarketguy, Jul 24, 2011
Photo of seabass87
3.58/5  rDev -16.7%
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.

seabass87, Jul 24, 2011
Photo of TheHoppiest
4.03/5  rDev -6.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a cloudy wax color, with a brilliant white 2" head that rather quickly fades to a thin lid, leaving spotty lacing down the sides.

Has a mild banana aroma, with a hint of honey malt with a hint of biscuit.

Starts with a mildly tart taste, mild malt, fair amount of carbonation, and a bit of lemon. Ends with a flourish of tart, drying out the tongue.

Medium bodied, creamy but light in its finsh.

I had high expectations for this one. While it is quite good, I'm not seeing the A+ given to it by the Alstroms.

TheHoppiest, Jul 23, 2011
Photo of Satchboogie
4.25/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

750ml corked and caged bottle (about a year old) poured into a tulip glass.

A: Pours dark gold, fairly hazy, with more than 2 fingers of off-white foamy head. Leaves just a little lacing.

S: Slightly funky belgian yeast, carmel/honey sweetness, spiciness (with a little clove), ripe fruits (a little apple and lemon zest, maybe pear/apricot). Alcohol is noticeable.

T: What struck me first was how sweet this was. Lots of carmel and honey sweetness building a really rich mouthfeel with a lot more malt than what I expect from a Triple. The Belgian yeast show the ripe fruits and slight funk, though there's more balance between the fruitiness and spiciness than typical. Alcohol again is a there in the finish, but not in an unpleasant way.

M: Close to a full body (as full as any Triple I've had), carbonation is right on with the style (moderately high). The honey/carmel quality gave this a very rich and cream mouthfeel with a semi-sweet finish (not what I expect from the style, but a pleasant surprise).

O: I wouldn't call this a typical triple, there's much more balance between malt (carmel and honey) and the dry, yeasty flavors. In hot weather, I'm not sure I'd like it too much, but treated more like a BSDA, and it's a treat.

Satchboogie, Jul 19, 2011
Photo of Moon2Goddess
3.8/5  rDev -11.6%
look: 5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Color: A lovely honey color, cloudy but not murky, cloudiness was due to highly active carbonation, it was like watching the ionization of perfectly rounded, miniscule atoms rapidly firing off one another. I expected it to feel like poprocks in my mouth and could not wait to try it.

Head: A creamy mountain resembling lemon gelato that stays and stays and stays. Laces seductively against the sides of the glass, mounded in the middle as if it had been lovingly whipped and longing to be mouthed. Refused to be ignored, every bottle tip created more head and reached your tongue before the body of liquid, but merged with the body rather than remained seperate.

Aroma: Vibrant lemon and honey, slightly grassy but not overwhelming.

Texture: The body alone was thin and bubbly. Blended with the head, however, it was incredibly smooth and frothy; the two are not oil and water, rather they make love to each other and let you feel and taste their intercourse. Swishing in your mouth is particularly enjoyable, a quite unusual sensation of an aerated pudding.

Flavor & Balance: Tasted as lively as it looked. The combination of citris, hops, and honey reminded me of sneaking my dad's honey-lemon Luden cough drops.The flavor was quite different, and to be preferred, from the bottle because the fabulous head burst forth and accompanied every mouthful to create a frothy, tart, yet sweetend element to make the drink more reminiscent of a lemon meringue pie. Excellent balance overall, complexity limited to three primary flavors, good but not exceptional for my personal palate preference.

Sustained Taste: Initially, aftertaste has slightly harsh hop element, then as the temperature in your mouth warms the residue, it thickens and sweetens into an exceptionally delightful citris, like a dolop of a mild lemon custard on the roof of your mouth.

Moon2Goddess, Jul 16, 2011
Photo of AndrewR
4.93/5  rDev +14.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

dusty local honey in color, nose just explosive. vanilla bean, reduced bananas, orange peel, fun dip stick, white flowers for days. supple in the mouth, alcohol seamlessly integrated, round and regal. band aids, cloves and amaretto dominate throughout and the finish lingers. this comes correct on all levels. benchmark brew that i could drink thrice daily.

AndrewR, Jul 14, 2011
Photo of HopBacchus
4.18/5  rDev -2.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours an orange gold with a large pillowy head and impressive lacing

Nose is complex with pale malts, pepper and a surprisingly strong presence of spirits

Spirity pepper and pale malts are up front, the flavor becomes more complex with citrus notes and coriander present finishes surprisingly dry

medium bodied and creamy, very drinkable if not for the spirity presence body had deffinetly been thinned by the alcohol

Overall a very good Tripel

HopBacchus, Jul 13, 2011
Photo of JayQue
4.22/5  rDev -1.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A good example of one of my favorite styles. Poured from an 11.2 oz brown bottle (with a cool "Trappisten Bier" raised glass ring around the neck of the bottle) into my Chimay goblet.

Pours a hazy orangy/dull gold color with a medium size delicate, bubbly white head. Head retention is good for a Tripel. A covering remains throughout on the top of the glass. Lacing is practically non-existent.

This beer REALLY has to warm up before the smell catches up to the taste. It is worth it though. Belgian yeast, fruit (apples and pears) and peppery spiciness are all there.

Good Tripel flavor throughout. Belgian yeast, a little candi sugar sweetness, fruitiness (apples pears and maybe apricots) and some black pepper spiciness. I am usually reminded of a faint ripe cheese flavor when I drink a good Tripel like this one.

Mouthfeel is rich. There is a fair amount of alcohol bite up front. Not a bad thing but definitely there. This smooths out as you drink. The pepper definitely contributes positively to the mouthfeel.

Overall this is a solid Tripel, one of the best I have had.

JayQue, Jul 13, 2011
Photo of derekmorris7
4.43/5  rDev +3%
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

derekmorris7, Jul 13, 2011
Photo of Knapp85
4.33/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

This beer poured out as a muddy yellow color with a decent white head on it. The lacing is scattered and doesn't really stick to the glass all that well. The foam does stay on top of the beer though. The smell of the beer had a Belgian yeast aroma followed but some spices on the nose. The taste of the beer was smooth and a little floral. The spices dance on the tongue in the aftertaste. The mouthfeel is very drinkable. Overall this Trappist is quite good and doesn't really fail anywhere. It's enjoyable and well worth the time to try it.

Knapp85, Jul 11, 2011
Photo of GallowsThief
4.43/5  rDev +3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Huge, huge thanks to Thijs (Brabander) for finding this gem and affording me an opportunity to get one. Poured out of a brown bottle into my Duvel. Thijs tracked this down and it had been sitting in a basement since 1985.

A – Pours out a cloudy caramel brown with almost no head to speak of but amazingly good carbonation. Spotty lacing from what little head there was.

S - Has a great funky yeast smell. Very nice fruit smell with apples, orange and pears in there. Peppery spiciness.

T – Very mellow tasting. Has some honey like qualities in it. Apple still present. Taste what could be a grape presence. Still has quite a bit of alcohol in the end that you feel all the way down. Touch of spiciness left.

M – Very creamy and smooth. Still had good carbonation. Ran from sweet malts to a nice drying at the end.

O – Once in a lifetime opportunity to try a brew this old. It was well worth it. Still a wonderful tasting beer. I enjoyed every sip of this one. Thanks Thijs!

GallowsThief, Jul 10, 2011
Photo of zac16125
4.4/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

750ml bottle poured into a snifter
bottled on 6/14/2010; best before 6/14/2012

A: Pours a very hazy dark golden color, with an almost orange hue. There is a solid 2 fingers width of bubbly, sea foam white head, with moderate retention until it dissipates down to a thin film. Leaves a small amount of lacing, but not much.

S: Just after the pour the scent is all about sweet malts and Belgium yeast funk. A brisk swirl of the snifter brings out citrus aromas of orange and lemon zest, as well as a touch of alcohol. A peppery spice is also prominent, and there is a hint of banana. Very good aroma, but not quite as prominent or complex as some other Tripels I have had.

T: The first sip is loaded with an initial malt sweetness. There is also lots of spice, and a citrus bitterness on the backend. Although it maintains a balance of sweet, spice, and bitterness, early on it has a harsh character, like too much is going on and nothing stands out. However, once the beer warms, in the second glass poured from the bomber, the harness subdues and the flavors that are present early on become more distinct. Banana comes out instead of a generic malt sweetness. Instead of an indiscriminate citrus, flavors of orange, lemon, and tangerine come out. The spiciness now has flavors of pepper, coriander, and a subtle clove character. And at one point I even caught a hint of vanilla. It turned out to have a very pleasant and complete flavor profile.

M/D: Great smoothness, even with the high carbonation that is typical of the style. Medium bodied, and does a great job of masking the almost double digit ABV, as there is no hint of alcohol whatsoever. The bomber goes down so fast that it’s almost too easy to drink.

O: Overall this is an excellent example of one of my favorite styles of beer. Smells good, looks great, and has a well balanced flavor. However, personally I think Le Fin De Monde is a superior beer, with stronger aromas and a more complex flavor profile. Westmalle Tripel is certainly good, and it’s a beer I will most definitely have again, but if it was side by side with LFDM, it wouldn’t even be a question which one I would choose.

zac16125, Jul 08, 2011
Photo of UTCengOwl
4.08/5  rDev -5.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

The original model for the style. Central Market had a 25% off sale, so I just had to get a bottle to review. Served in a New Belgium globe.

The beer pours a hazy, orangey, yellow with a spectacular white head. Good lacing and good bubble structure. Definitely above solid and what I look for in a beer. Trappist know how to do this stuff.

The smell is mostly banana and lemon with some muted Belgian spice blending in the background. The banana is a bit dry and I'd almost prefer a bit more citrus, if that makes sense. Good, but not great.

The taste is dry and spritzy. Well rounded with banana and spices that can only be from Belgium. The fruit mix is still not quite where I want it to be. Still, it's definitely "to style" :P. However, I'd rather have a LFDM any day of the week and that doesn't include the price difference.

This is a classic and the basis of the Tripel style, but I just don't like it as much as I feel like I should. If someone haded me one, I definitely wouldn't turn it down.

UTCengOwl, Jul 06, 2011
Photo of Allpe45
4.83/5  rDev +12.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

330ml bottle
Best before end: 13/10/12
Served in a chalice

Appears bright yellowish gold, with a dense creamy head. Great retention and lacing. Smell is dominated by estery fruit. Some yeast, spice, and pale malts. Taste is incredibly balanced. Not much alcohol presence. Estery fruit and spicy phenols, followed by yeasty funk and malty sweetness. Light bitterness. Quick, dry finish with some residual sweetness. Medium bodied for the style, carbonation right on point. I would expect nothing less from a Trappist Tripel

Allpe45, Jul 06, 2011
Photo of nazbotica
4.45/5  rDev +3.5%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

A - This beer pours an opaque gold color with a two finger head that settles to 1 finger and lingers.

S - I smell rye bread, belgian yeast, slight lemon and red licorice.

T - The smell gives up the grainy rye flavor and lemon. I also taste flowers and melon at the end. I also got a bubblegum flavor here and there. The longer I drink the more I get a medicinal alcohol taste. This is my only complaint.

M - The beer is medium-light to medium bodied. The citrus would make it crisper, but the nice level of carbonation and the yeast, I think, give it the smoothest, softest mouthfeel I have come to expect from Belgians. I also get a warming from alcohol.

O - This is a quintessential Belgian Trippel. I cannot imagine what could be more authentic. If it exists, I have never tasted it. This is such a complex beer with so many fruit and malt flavors. I could probably drink several more and list a lot more flavors.

nazbotica, Jul 05, 2011
Photo of DavidST
4.1/5  rDev -4.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a 11.2oz bottle into a tulip glass best before 7-15-11.

I poured everything from the bottle (yeast and all) so I got a hazy straw or pale orange with lots of yeast floating around, the head was large white with big carbonation bubbles which very quickly dissipated into a thin film (in the time it took me to write this). The smell is very sweet like fruit (maybe peach) with a boozy presence. Medium light mouth feel with plenty of carbonation. The taste is good, not as sweet as expected from the smell, there is a little fruit and maltiness, maybe a slight peppery taste (less than Duvel) its very dry on the way down with a little alcohol burn (which is the most obvious taste). Overall a pretty good beer.

DavidST, Jul 04, 2011
Photo of Wisconsin93
3.53/5  rDev -17.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

A - pours a mellow orange. Has a cloudy, unfiltered look. Nice head retention with noticeable lattice.

S - Boozy and peppery. Small hint of citrus, mostly lemon. Overall a complex bouquet, but not very strong

T - Spicy. We almost tasted vanilla, but very faint. It was juicy, but still a very dry-tasting beer. Not very sweet.

M - High carbonation with a silky feel. Left us salivating between sips. Lots of complexity here. Our favorite part.

Wisconsin93, Jul 02, 2011
Photo of rvdoorn
4.68/5  rDev +8.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Got this one from the local grocery shop.
Look: pours a yellow-dark-golden color with a thick white head.
Smell: Citrus, peach, spicy hops (pepper), malts, yeast
Taste: crisp up front, fruits (citrus, peach), yeast, malts, spicy herbs (coriander) and nicely warming alcohol and hppy finish.
Mouthfeel: medium carbonation with a silk medium body
Overall: One of the better tripels out there for sure. IMO underrated, probably because it is so widely distributed. One can only imagine what the ratings would be if this beer would be only avaliable at the monastry (like WV)

rvdoorn, Jul 02, 2011
Photo of CwrwAmByth
4.93/5  rDev +14.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Poured from a 330ml bottle into a chimay goblet, the first of my 3 triples night (other two being Chimay and St. Bernadus)

Pours a dark gold colour with probably the silkiest, creamiest head i've ever seen that slowly collapses in on itself.

Smells refreshing - lemon, light/pale fruits and malts. Like a summers day.

Taste is first a citrusy zing, before some pale malts and very slight hops take over giving a slight bitterness, and an alcohol warmth finishes it off. Everything is very subtle, I would say it's on the far other end of the boldness scale, opposite the US craft brew style boldness.

Over all a really, really good beer. Perfect on this summer saturday afternoon just as i've finished mowing the lawn.

CwrwAmByth, Jul 02, 2011
Photo of Mazaman
4.63/5  rDev +7.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A - 2 finger white head with tightly compacted bubbles. Decent head retention and nice lacing. Beer is a nice amber orange and a bit cloudy.

S - smell of bread, yeast, and a hint of malt

T - upfront sharpness and a little sweetness, followed by a wave of hop bitterness and slight alcohol, finished with a lingering grapefruit and citrus taste

M - biting carbonation and slick mouthfeel. Highly drinkable for a beer this big. Lingering grapefruit leave you thirsty for another.

Mazaman, Jul 02, 2011
Photo of bluesfan1181
4.85/5  rDev +12.8%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Serving - 11.2 oz bottle poured into a Chimay goblet.

A - Pours a big 3 finger head that bellows out of the glass. Has a beautiful golden orange glow to it that, is cloudy with yeast. Lacing sticks around the bottom of the glass.

S - Smells of spiciness and yeast. Has fruit notes mixed in.

T - Hop bitterness and yeast on the front, fruitiness and alcohol on the back. Has a nice lingering taste that is pleasant.

M - Has mild carbonation that tickles your throat on the way down. Easy to drink for an ABV% of this volume.

Overall this is one of the best in the world. A true Trappist ale from Belgium. Worth every penny and one I will be visiting again!!!!

bluesfan1181, Jun 30, 2011
Photo of Hershdawg
4.95/5  rDev +15.1%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

11.2 oz bottle into great divide snifter.

A: Big foamy white head, golden appearence with some cloudiness from the yeast. Decent lacing.

S: Amazing, belgian esters, sugar, tropical fruits,

T: Banana, clove, bubble gum, sweet malt. Heavy yeast character but wonderful balence

M: Excellent and not heavy.

Overal its a world class beer. It can survive a bit in a cellar. The beer is complex but easy to drink. It defines the tripel style. Great beer to go out of you way for.

Hershdawg, Jun 27, 2011
Photo of socon67
4.25/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Pours golden and very cloudy. Some carbonation is evident. A thick white foam leaves heavy lacing on the glass.

S - Scents of cherries, citrus, and grain. Very sweet.

T - Has a potent booze bite that is tempered by a sweet sugary taste. The transition is nice. The slight tartness in the finish makes this hit all the spot for a good tripel.

M - Certianly heavy and packs a punch. One of these is plenty. Well balanced, and minimal carbonation. Has a little raspy feel in the vein of a pilsner.

O - This is right there with Chimay and the other name trappist tripels.

socon67, Jun 18, 2011
Westmalle Trappist Tripel from Brouwerij Westmalle
96 out of 100 based on 3,646 ratings.