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Westmalle Trappist Tripel - Brouwerij Westmalle

Not Rated.
Westmalle Trappist TripelWestmalle Trappist Tripel

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
96
world-class

3,634 Ratings
THE BROS
100
world-class

(view ratings)
Ratings: 3,634
Reviews: 1,576
rAvg: 4.3
pDev: 10.23%
Wants: 248
Gots: 312 | 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
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Ratings: 3,634 | Reviews: 1,576 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of Cheesemoose
4.08/5  rDev -5.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Poured into my St. Bernardus chalice.

Hazy yellow with bright white head. Bubbly head with 3 fingers of head (on a mellow pour) that recedes into a thin film. Head slides down with each sip.

Nose is well balanced, with a good clove/spice character to it along with a fruit aromas. Alcohol is present in the far reaches, though it adds more to the spice character.

Sweet finish, extenuated by the fruit flavors present in the nose, played against a spice finish. Alcohol has more of a warming effect than anything. You get a majority of the flavors from the yeast, so do not discard.

The mouth feel is absolutely divine. Resonates well through the finish.

Alcohol warms you well, most noticeably in the cheeks and jaw. Strange to think you can localize the alcohol effects in your body.

Cheesemoose, Nov 07, 2010
Photo of OWSLEY069
4.72/5  rDev +9.8%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Pours a hazy yellow color with a big white head. In the aroma, dry candy sugar, hints of fruit and a nice yeast presence. In the taste, candy sugar and fruit notes, all mellow and a dryness that rides all the way through. A smooth and medium bodied mouthfeel, with a small dry hint of fruit. Best representation of style ever.

OWSLEY069, Nov 05, 2010
Photo of Torps
4.33/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Pours a cloudy, honey-like deep yellow with an ample head and lots of sticky lacing on the glass. Aroma is lemon peel, honey, coriander, bready yeast. Very crisp light taste. Very "bright" and refreshing with a hoppy dryness on the back of my tongue. Mouthfeel is exceptional. So full but with a fair amount of carbonation it doesn't feel syrupy. Drinkability is good. It was gone before I knew it.

Torps, Nov 05, 2010
Photo of smibroncos
4.05/5  rDev -5.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A. Poured a slightly cloudy, light antique yellow with a short white diminishing head. Light lacing on the glass.

S. Citrus, corriander, light roasted malt.

T. Citrus, malt, fruit, bannana, pepper

M medium bodied, fizzy carbonation, dry finnish

D. The flavor and nose is ok but the sharp, bittter, dry duration is the best part of this brew.

smibroncos, Nov 02, 2010
Photo of lacqueredmouse
3.55/5  rDev -17.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Pours a very light, but very hazed yellow colour, with an extremely voluminous head of crackling whit bubbles. Some dissipation as the head collapses, but the lacing is reasonably good, sticking in the same patterns as the large bubbles cracked. Lots of streaming carbonation, but that gives it rather a refined look. Looks very decent overall.

Nose is rather bready, but with a good, slightly funky crushed citrus leaf character. Plenty of Belgian yeas, but a lot of refreshment to be had throughout, and a little bit of classic spice and phenolics to remind you of the style. Very decent.

Taste is sharp and peppery, and extremely phenolic on the finish, with a big bitterness that wells up throughout. Front is thin with a slight yeast overtone, before the phenolic spice comes through with a vengeance. Feel is very light, but gets cut with the astringency on the back.

Wow, compared to the St Bernardus I had earlier in the evening, this is a far more raw and far harsher beer, and it suffers for it. Not a huge amount of complexity, and a ragingly raw back palate that truly hurts drinkability. As much as I'm reviewing it, I know it's not my place to tell the Trappist monks what to do, but this was not my cup of tea. There are other examples I've enjoyed a whole lot more.

It's not a bad beer by any means, but it's below the baseline for the style in my opinion.

lacqueredmouse, Oct 31, 2010
Photo of perrymarcus
3.93/5  rDev -8.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

11.2oz bottle served in an oversized wineglass.

pours a hazy, dull golden-yellow with a creamy finger plus of white head... decent retention, some lacing.

nose is a nice potpourri of fruit, spice, belgian yeast and alcohol esters. i get a touch of clove, maybe a trace of hops.

flavor: first adjective that enters my mind is dry. the aroma characters all are there - fruit, spice, yeast - and there's a distinct hoppy bitterness to it, plus a bit of a tart presence... more bitterness and some booze coming in the finish. overall a good beer, but to me i'm not sure i'd rank this as the ultimate example of a belgian tripel. in fact i'm sure i wouldn't; not my favorite trappist offering.

medium to full bodied, creamy mouthfeel with adequate carbonation. very drinkable considering the well-blended 9.5% ABV. i would recommend this beer, but would advise one to keep his or her expectations in check going in - i was prepared to be blown away and that just didn't happen, unfortunately.

perrymarcus, Oct 31, 2010
Photo of dubinsky
3.65/5  rDev -15.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - I poured this beer as carefully as i could and it still produced a massive 3 finger foamy white head. Grainy, cloudy golden yellow color. Nice spotty lacing with decent retention.

S - Nice fruity aroma, with strong pear aroma's and hints of citrus and mango. Quite earthy with a slight hop presence.

T - Not as sweet as i expected. Quite dry and really spicy up front. I dont know what the spices are but i guess people have found pepper and cardamom. I wish the taste followed the smell more closely.

M - Extremely dry on the palate, and at the back of the tongue. Very crisp and fine carbonation.

D - I enjoyed this beer, bur the flavor was not my favorite in this style. Its drinkable, but given the dryness, i doubt i would want to drink more than one in a sitting.

dubinsky, Oct 31, 2010
Photo of nkersten
4.15/5  rDev -3.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Bottle poured into Leffe glass. Bright orange gold liquid with one inch bubbly foamy white head that settles with great lacing. Smell is yeast esters, cloves, some creamy orange. Taste is similar, citrus and orange up front with yeasty spice flavors. Light malt and hop flavors in the finish. Body is light with a hefty carbonation, pretty dry. Drinkability is good for a 9.5% beer.

nkersten, Oct 28, 2010
Photo of zhanson88
4.5/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Appearance: Gorgeous pale golden color with light orange highlights. A full 3 fingers of egg shell white head that reduces down to awesome open lacing that clings all over my glass.

Smell: Citrus, cloves, alcoholic esters, and a bit of Belgian yeast combine for an awesome smell. I get more citrus in this tripel than in others, and less of a yeasty smell (than in other tripels and Belgians in general) which I consider a plus.

Taste: Some citrus and cloves up front, with esters toward the back end and slight bitterness. Great, balanced beer that can hold its own with any beer of the style.

Mouthfeel/Drinkability: A bit under medium bodied, this beer is smooth and creamy with perfect carbonation. The alcohol is hidden extremely well and is very drinkable. Overall, one of the best tripels out there.

zhanson88, Oct 27, 2010
Photo of Yesac
3.6/5  rDev -16.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A- Peachy golden color, small bright white head quickly settles to a small foamy layer.

S- Light fruits, Belgian yeast,

T- Reminds me of a white wine or dry champagne. Sweet, citrusy, dry and that's about it. Flavors are all bunched together. Makes a great sipper.

M- Medium body, high carbonation.

D- Great Belgian sipper over all. Slightly to dry for my liking and not as complex as I'm used to with this style.

Yesac, Oct 25, 2010
Photo of dogfishandi
4.53/5  rDev +5.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

11.2 oz bottle pulled from my cellar poured into an oversized wine glass. i purchased this bottle in the begining of april 2009 and its been in my cellar ever since. best before 17/07/10 on the bottle. it has roughly 2 years of age on it.

as soon as i cracked the cap the bottle basically exploded. i made a big mess but i was able to salvage most of the beer. and the result was a tremondous looking beer. poured a huge billowy, rocky, soapy pure white head with some great retention. eventually faded to a thin layer. lots of sticky lace that slowly fades with the head. hazy and full of chunky yeast sediment.

big nose of alcohol, ripe fruits, grainy, candied malts, phenols, belgian yeast with slight hints of bubble gum.

big strong powerful feel to each sip. thick body that somehow also comes off a little thin. has some wine like alcohol. complexity and blending of flavors going on thats just too hard to put in words. ripe fruits, candied grainy pilsner malts, phenols, grape like sweetness, a little bubblegum flouride from the yeast. slight hints of citrus. carbonation starts out strong and then settles the more you drink. so many layers. i love it.

a great beer. aging this really didnt sway me. its just as good aged or fresh, im almost leaning more towards fresh, buts its been awhile since ive had it fresh. highly recommend tripel, one of the best.

dogfishandi, Oct 20, 2010
Photo of ratedz
3.95/5  rDev -8.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured a 5 ounce sample at a recent tasting party. Pours a hazy amber with some noticeable sediment.

Smell is slightly funky, malty, with hints of banana and some dark fruits.

Taste was dominated by some funky yeast and bread-like malts. The banana that was present in the nose is also there. Slightly spicy with a bit of hops on the finish.

Light body makes this smooth and creamy. High carbonation. Drinkability was slightly above average since it was something that I probably wouldn't drink multiple bottles of in one sitting.

ratedz, Oct 17, 2010
Photo of kreeper
4.45/5  rDev +3.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A - hazy dark gold color, tall, solid head with a few specks of sediment lingering in the foam. Bubbles continue to rise from the bottom of the glass for minutes after pouring, not in the normal way where there is a stream of bubbles coming from a few spots, but. the bubbles are rising from seemingly everywhere. Little specks of sediment are floating around in the haze. I seem to like sediment (it dosent really bother me, and i feel like i want to get all I can out of the flavor of the beer) so I made sure to swirl around the bottle when there was about a quarter of it left to get the sediment up off the bottom.

S - sweet malt. It almost seems like a lemon-drop type flavor, just like the candy. I can already get a little whiff of the alcohol. A weird but surprisingly pleasing smell of extremely fresh sour cream comes from the froth after it has begun to warm.

T - The sweet malt really comes out in the taste. The lemondrop smell seems to turn into more of a honey flavor. Alcohol adds quite a bit to the flavor, giving it a little bite at the back of the tongue. Waited for it to warm a little and noticed a slight metallic aftertaste and the yeast flavor come out.

M - good carbonation. the sweet maltiness and alcohol add to the body, I would give it medium to full bodied.

D - The high alcohol is balanced perfectly by the sweetness. also the carbonation makes this somewhat more drinkable. At 9.8 percent, one bottle got me a buzz. Very drinkable for one bottle, but a hangover resulting from this would be brutal.

Serving type: bottle

kreeper, Oct 17, 2010
Photo of BeerFMAndy
4.47/5  rDev +4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

11.2 oz bottle split and poured into a Duvel tulip. 9.5% ABV, Serve at 45° - 50°F, Best before end 27/01/10.

My thanks go out to Bnieman for this one, getting me one step closer to tackling the top 100 list, and for sharing an awesome brew!

A - Hazy, poured with sediment, it's a golden yellow color with a puffy white head. Dense bubbles deflate slowly and leave some thick blankets of lace on the glass.

S - Awesome nose of Belgian yeast and sweet, light candi sugar. Crystal malts and wispy spicy floral hops. Nice balance going on. Hints of clay and spice with a touch of white grapes on the back end.

T - Sweet, but not overly sweet, it's got plenty of crystal malts and candi sugar balanced with a touch of white grapes and spice from the Belgian yeast esters. Delish!

M - Medium-bodied and incredibly smooth, a well-balanced feel leads through the highly carbonated and sweet beer to a lightly dry finish.

D - The alcohol is nowhere to be found, making this beer trouble if you've got a 750 of it. It's very drinkable with great balance. Based on the date, I'm sure it's got some age on it and it's still terrific!

BeerFMAndy, Oct 14, 2010
Photo of SFLpunk
4.25/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Bought this dusty bottle at Plaza Liquors in Johnson City, TN. Dated 21/08/09, which means it was bottled 21/08/2007 according to an email I received back from the brewery. A nice find if I do say so myself!

Appearance: Pours a cloudy golden/brownish yellow with thin bone-white head.

Nose: Creamy smelling with some light anise or maybe fennel notes.

Palate: Wide and fat, luscious and thick. Alcohol lends it a little prickle so it's not cloying. Sweet pale malt, fennel seeds, fresh smoky cream, some lime zest if you dig for it. Finish is dried about by the yeast (which adds a little flavor but is not intrusive). A nice flint-smoke note bods and weaves on the finish. Carbonation level is moderate to low.

Notes: My first Westmalle Tripel and it is freakin' awesome! Love the up front sweetness but the drying yeast. Great balance and length.

SFLpunk, Oct 14, 2010
Photo of jpro
4.15/5  rDev -3.5%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from an 11.2oz trappist bottle into a Chimay chalice...

A: Big pfft upon un-capping this one... pours a bright, dusty, straw orange, with a massive snow white head; good lacing.

S: Zest and a mild tart aroma on the nose; also some sweet bread, medicinal notes, yeast fruitiness and some spice.

T: Bready and peppery up front; spicy; a bit of sweetness toward the finish along with some warming alcohol; tart towards the finish, too; surprisingly hoppy finish leaves a nice bitterness with some hints of citrus rind.

M: Medium-bodied and creamy; high carbonation; smooth and a touch slick.

D: Definitely something I like to savor and have just one of... nice.

jpro, Oct 10, 2010
Photo of kzoobrew
4/5  rDev -7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Even a care pour produces a massive 4 finger head. Grainy golden yellow body. Head is loose and bubbly, bone white in color. Spotty lacing left as head recedes, Retention is decent.

Fruity aroma, loads of lemon and pears. Earthy musky grain aroma. Hops are organic and spicy. Slight bit of booze in the nose.

Flavor is a bit surprising. I expected some sweetness, their is really none to be had. Heavily spiced up front. White pepper and cardamom flavors. The only hint of sweetness is faint on the back of the palate.

Dry dry beer. Crisp and smooth texture, medium bodied. the finish is bone dry.

I really enjoy the dryness but the flavor was not to my preference in the given style. Very enjoyable beer to drink, personally I doubt I would want more than one in a sitting.

kzoobrew, Oct 10, 2010
Photo of cetherid
4/5  rDev -7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

poured into a tulip.

A.

pours a dark golden color with a large amount of head. about 3 fingers worth. some specs of yeast floating in there as well.

S.

malt and yeast with some fruity smells. a little apple/pear with some spices in there.

T.

spice, yeast and booze. a little of the fruit flavors in there but those are much stronger in the smell. a really smooth dry taste at the end.

M.

about medium bodied with a dry finish. a good amount of carbonation.

D.

good tasting but not too high for drinkability....the high alochol content and the intense spicy flavor, one is about all I could take. i will definitely try this again however, but 2 in row would be pushing it.

cetherid, Oct 10, 2010
Photo of davod23
4.38/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Vintage bottle of Westmalle Tripel. I understand that this is about thirty years old at this point. I had no idea whether this beer would even be drinkable at this point - 30 years is a long time.

The antique, rusty cap comes off unwillingly. Surprisingly, there's a hiss. Really? That's crazy. Pour is a clear, pale honey color. So far, so good - this doesn't look like it will kill me. No head, no real bubbles to speak of at all.

Aroma. Huh. This is surprising me so far. Banana candy, sweet cream, Belgian yeastiness. This is really pretty good.

Taste is really, very good. If this was a fresh brew, this would probably only get a 4.0 tops, but I am factoring in the fact that there's just no way this should be this good at this point. Sweet malt, banana, esters, Belgian soapy quality. Newspaper - clearly a bit of oxidation here, but it's not really that noticeable.

Mouthfeel is okay. Medium bodied, flat. Sweet, a bit syrupy.

Drinkability is really good. I split this bottle, but I kinda wish I had a whole bottle for myself.

Shockingly, shockingly good. I'm dumbfounded. Next time you're in your local beer shop and you see some of these lying around, make sure to pick up a couple. But only if they, themselves, are old enough to drink.

davod23, Oct 07, 2010
Photo of joesc230
4.1/5  rDev -4.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

Had this both in Brussels and back home in the states. Great in both cases. Cloudy, orange appearance. Strong tasting beer, with slight fruit undertones. Decent amount on carbination. Overall, a very nice trappist beer. I enjoy having it in the Westmalle glass I bought while in Brussels.

joesc230, Oct 07, 2010
Photo of mothman
3.58/5  rDev -16.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

TOP 100 Tick FTW!!!

Poured into unibroue snifter.

Pours 1.5 finger of white head. Nice retention, but no lace. Color is a hazy pale gold.

Aroma: Dried apples and pears are the dominate fruit flavors here. Some cloves and spice notes. Belgian yeast shows with some bready malts. Herbal floral hop profile.

Taste: A bit of booze shows, coriander and spices are big, dried apples and pears again. Yeast, bready malts. The taste follows the nose fairly identical.

Mouthfeel: Very fizzy and dry. Medium bodied with a very high amount of carbonation. A bit hot as well with more alcohol showing than I would like.

Overall, a decent tripel, but too much carbonation and a bit too much alcohol showing. Somewhat drinkable. I dig a bit of it.

mothman, Oct 06, 2010
Photo of kbutler1
4.1/5  rDev -4.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Bottle. Date on bottle says 5/08/11. Bottle opens with a slight little pop. Pours a slightly hazed golden straw color with a big bubbled 1 1/2 finger head that slowly settles. Seems more carbonated than I thought when I opened the bottle. The smell is rather clean with almost fruit like aromas like peach and apple. Some spice in the nose as well along with banana. Pretty high carbonation level that in my opinion somewhat detracts from the flavors. Pretty sweet up front with a mix of booze spicy type flavors. Ends with a lingering bitterness. Ends pretty cleanly. Good lace left on the glass. Overall a surprisingly light bodied, well carbed, nectar that drinks way easier than it should for the amount of alcohol it has. Makes me wonder how many tourists in Belgium just got rocked on this by accident!

kbutler1, Oct 06, 2010
Photo of mmva321
4.28/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Poured into a chalice.

A: I like how this tripel looks; the clear and yellow body has a very beautiful orangish hue to it. There's carbonation that rises in little columns towards about 2 fingers of foamy white head that leaves some lacing. Nothing that wows me, but I like it for the style.

S: Lemon and orange pop out over a smooth malty base that also contains spices and yeast. Still, nothing explosive here, just simple and solid. I just kind of wish there was an element that arrested your attention.

T: This is where Westmalle gets this beer right. Bitter hops make a bold appearance right away with the citrus of lemon and orange. This is very well balanced by the sweet and smooth malts. It ends with bitter and bready yeasts and a slight alcohol flavor. Simple, but not afraid.

M: Thin and carbonated. Just what it needs to be.

D: This tripel doesn't mask the high alcohol the way others do, making this beer a little less drinkable. But this tripel retains the simplicity of its trappist brewery and the great balance of its style making it perhaps the canvas for others to draw and expand upon.

mmva321, Oct 05, 2010
Photo of Kinsman
4.13/5  rDev -4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Picked this up while away for the weekend. Didn't have my usual glassware so substituted with a wine glass.

Poured a dark golden colored body with a creamy sticky white head. Slowly fades to leave a continuous lacing around the glass.

Aroma reveals hints of pale malt followed by a strong note of yeasty phenols and spice.

Taste was a big surprise, and was a bit taken back at first. Typically I've found the syrupy sweetness of most tripels to be a bit too much for my taste. However, with this beer, the sweetness was tart but balanced out by a strong phenolic yeast note. Also, hints of spice and a decent hop note help round out the flavor.

Mouthfeel is very dry and refreshingly crisp. Carbonation gives it a nice bubbly feel on the tongue and as the beer warms, the alcohol provides a slight warm feeling.

Overall, a highly drinkable tripel, and really quite different that what expected, but in a good way.

Kinsman, Oct 05, 2010
Photo of tronester
4.05/5  rDev -5.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pours a hazy golden with a big white head. Smells of vanilla and solvent alcohol. Taste is sweet medicine up front, with a dry licorice middle, and a earthy finish. Mouthfeel is smooth, super high carbonation that overflowed from the bottle when opened. Good drinkability. Very expensive, for the price there are many others I would rather purchase. I will probably get this again later down the road but it won't be a regular purchase for me.

tronester, Oct 04, 2010
Westmalle Trappist Tripel from Brouwerij Westmalle
96 out of 100 based on 3,634 ratings.