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Westmalle Trappist Tripel - Brouwerij Westmalle

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Westmalle Trappist TripelWestmalle Trappist Tripel

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BA SCORE
96
world-class

3,898 Ratings
THE BROS
100
world-class

(view ratings)
Ratings: 3,898
Reviews: 1,600
rAvg: 4.3
pDev: 10.23%
Wants: 287
Gots: 430 | FT: 4
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: 3,898 | Reviews: 1,600 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of fank2788
4.6/5  rDev +7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

11.2 oz bottle marked best before 10/4/09 served in a snifter
In the glass this is a slightly cloudy pale yellow gold with a one to two finger thick head that falls to about half a centimeter of tiny pure white bubbles. The smell is very tart lemon citrus with a touch of grass, pale malt and a hint of yeasty phenol, very refreshing. The taste is aggressively peppery and tart upfront then comes a subtle rush of smooth alcohol and finishes with a fair dose of hoppy spice and bitterness. Despite the somewhat strong flavor profile the beer remains amazingly well balanced, not too sweet, fruity, yeasty, bitter or alcoholic. The mouthfeel is light from the carbonation but also tingly and warming from the alcohol and pepper flavors overall the pleasant peppery spice will linger in the mouth for a long time. Well hidden alcohol in an incredibly tasty beer make this a real treat. I think I like La Fin du Monde just a tiny bit more than this beer but that is only because the pepper flavor is a bit less harsh in that one, but that said they are both simply amazing.

Photo of joepais
4.08/5  rDev -5.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Bottle poured into a Duvel tulip. What greeted me was a nice finger worth of head that turned into a thick layer of lace on top of a beautiful hazy (small particles float around) yellowish orange body.

Aromas of fruit, bread yeast, hops and a light alcohol whiff

Flavors are citric and spicy with a little alcohol warmth in the end

Good carbonation on the tongue

A great drink for a good meal. A little to much alcohol to drink a lot of these but highly drinkable

Photo of Graham5161986
4.85/5  rDev +12.8%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I remember loving this beer before I became a BA, now I finally have the chance to review it properly!

A: pours a bright, cloudy, golden-yellow with a rocky, 2 finger white head that has awesome staying power and leaves an attractive thick, sticky lace. lots of visible particles and a good amount of carbonation

S: aromas of spice, ripe fruit (apple, banana, pear, raisin, plum) yeast and caramel - so intriguing

T: incredibly rich, yeasty fruit with a beautiful tart, yet subtly sweet finish. The alcohol provides a heavenly warming experience, yet it is hidden so well by the complex flavours involved. I even detect a bit of rhubarb on the lingering finish.

M: light and very crisp with excellent carbonation and a fantastically dry, warm, and tingly finish that puts a smile on my face.

D: I'm speechless. This beer is so incredibly delicious. It is so complex and is such a pleasure to drink. Even with it's 9.5% ABV, it goes down so easily. I could definitely put down more than one of these in one sitting - which, for a trappist, is quite impressive. Only monks could brew something so Divine. I really can't wait until I drink this beer again.

Photo of Grimes
4.9/5  rDev +14%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

I bought this as a random single bottle at Portage Beverage in Canton, Ohio for just under $5.
Pours a beautiful thick peach haze with a huge, fizzy head that dissolves in a white ring in my snifter after about 30 seconds
Smell is of hops with bold sweet citrus
Mouthfeel is very full and creamy with bright and bubbly carbonation
Normally I don't like this much carbonation, but with this beer, it works for me, and it works very well.
Very, very alcoholic. At only 9.5%, this brew packs some serious heat.
In conclusion, I love this beer. I will have this again and again, and probably a few more times. CHEERS!

Photo of Halcyondays
4.3/5  rDev 0%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

750 mL bottle, bought from BevMo Huntington Beach, bottle date 7/6/07,

A: Pours a light burnt orange, with a full, fluffy white balloon of a head, which has good retention and leaves great lacing.

S: Quite complex - orange, lemon, pepper, coriander, bubblegum esters, mint.

T: Great tasting tripel. Orange and lemon definitely come in on the first sip, bready malt, a bit of sourdough bread, with spicy, earthy and dry hop bitterness in the finish.

M: Light, spritzy, very dry, high carbonation, a beer that really hides the alcohol.

D: A complex beer, more of a sipper than a drinking beer, the standard of the style was no letdown, better than Chimay's Cinq Cents, IMO.

Photo of bkilpatr
4.28/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Poured from a 330 ml bottle into a Westvleteren glass. 03/09/08. Freshness date of 10/04/09 on the bottle.

Pours a bright golden color with two fingers of whitish head. Aroma is citrusy with bananas.

The taste follows the smell on this one. Oranges, Bananas, grapefruits, all those other citrus fruits. Some sweetness also. The alcohol is pretty well hidden, especially considering it's 9.5%.

This is medium bodied, medium-high carbonation. Very smooth. Could drink a lot of this. Another very good Trappist beer from Westmalle.

Photo of Antilochus
4.83/5  rDev +12.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Purchased at a Kingston, Ontario LCBO as part of the 2008 LCBO Spring Release. 9.50% abv, 33cl bottle. Best before 10/15/2009. Served at cellar temperature. Poured into Chimay chalice, and a little into a nosing glass.

Appearance is a slightly hazy orange, massive off-white rocky and foamy head with lots of large bubbles trapped in the mire. A little suspended lees. This is wonderful to behold. Leaves some marbled rocky foam, leaves a magnificent wall of lace.

Aromas of Belgian yeast, candy sugar, oranges, icing sugar, lots of spice!, banana, clove, apricot, some light resin - citrus? Lemony bubble gum. Apple. Compact nose, almost impenetrable. Subtly alcoholic.

Mouthfeel is medium-light, yet creamy and smooth, carbonation is excellent, not too aggressive as to sting but very refreshing, even for such a high abv beer.

Crystallized oranges, orange rind, bourbon, yeast, vanilla, cake mix, whipped cream, light grapefruit, super peppery (Talisker!), spicy in general too. Lime juice. Palate is sweeter than the finish but it still possesses a subtle sweetness to it that is utterly enjoyable. Alcohol complements all the flavours exceptionally well. Well balanced, not too sweet or yeasty, fruity tangerine apricot bready finish. Hoppy resins leave it lightly bitter (yes!). Warming too, alcohol is very well hidden but catches up with you. This is wonderfully easy to drink.

This is the PERFECT Tripel, better IMHO than even the great Fin Du Monde, and hands down the best beer I have ever had. It is leaving me speechless.

In short: This beer is absurdly good. No beverage has ever impressed me like Westmalle Tripel has. Bravo! (encore)

Second time around: still a wonder to me. Lots of tangerine on the palate this time.

Photo of thirtysixbelow
4.5/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

a - hazy yellow orange color with a 1 finger white head. This head lasts forever :o Excellent lacing.

s - nice smell of yeast and citrus. Sweet smelling yet tart.

t - bananas and light citrus and fruit. A little spicy flavor. Alcohol peeks through in the middle leaving a nice warmth behind.

m - very carbonated, explains why the head retention is so good. Gives the beer a good tingling feeling.

d - This is a great beer. I had to take off a little bit for drinkability because the high abv will keep me from enjoying a lot of this beer :( In some beers the alcohol peeking through in the tastes is a bad thing for me, but with this one it seems to complement it. This is one of the first beers that I have had where I really can't think of anything that would make it better. Definitely will be coming back to this one.

Photo of johnyeast
4.33/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a hazy, light golden in color with a slight white head. Smells of spices, a bit tart and flowery. The first taste is strong with a bit of spice. A good taste with a slight sour taste as a finish. The strong alcohol flavor is what stands out. Fairly drinkable for a stronger ale.

Photo of mully
4.33/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A -- thick meruinge head falls dslowly in chuncks leaving a fine lace all the way down. Gold/ brown very rich in color.

S -- mmmm Belgian yeast and candi sugar

t -- Full flavored phenolic wonderfully distinct, nothing quite like a trappist ale one of my favorites

M-- oilly clove like residue fine carbonation tingles nicely

D -- alcohol is hidden will but it catches up with you after a little while

Overall -- Great beer

Photo of WaveRebel51
4.03/5  rDev -6.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance is almost perfect -- bright, golden hue with a creamy frothy head. Smells like fresh, spiced bananas. Flavor starts out very sweet, with the peppery esters followed with a hint of banana sweetness, with a hop bitterness in the finish. Had this in the 355 ml and the 750 ml bottles, and the hop bitterness seems more pronounced in the bigger bottle.

Photo of GeoffW
4.58/5  rDev +6.5%
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.

Photo of IBUnit63
4.18/5  rDev -2.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from bottle into Ommegang chalice. 2-finger, pillowy yet sturdy head - can even see the bend at the bottom of the head line from where the glass was tipped. Light carbonation, a little cloudy. A nice bit of lacing when the head finally recedes.

Stlight orange peel essence with moderate yeast. A little coriander/clove and more tangy zest.

Nice, clean taste for a trippel. Decent, mild spice and hop profule. Alcohol is hidden very well in the tangy taste - this is very well-balanced.

Very refreshing for the style - crisp and clean.

Much more easy-drinking than expected. Very enjoyable Trippel.

Photo of ojclark
4.3/5  rDev 0%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Lemony, citric, hoppy, "Belgian" aroma. Cloudy, yellow/orange color with thin white head and minimal lacing. Some yeast sediment in glass. Dry, acidic, bitter, spicy flavor. Lemon, grassy and alcohol flavor components present along with a "Belgian" yeasty flavor. Flavor is very complex overall. Effervescent palate with light/medium body and a long finish. Initially, seems dry from bitterness, but there's some body and slight sweetness backing it up. Complex aftertaste shares the same components as the flavor. Excellent.

Photo of AleDrinkToThat
4.93/5  rDev +14.7%
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 elmore
4.68/5  rDev +8.8%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Poured from an 11.2 oz bottle into a Trois Pistoles chalice. Slow pour yielded a creamy, thick pale head. Glowing golden orange color with a good amount of fine yeast sediment. Great retention with plentiful foamy lace left on the sides of the glass - this is definitely a Trappist ale.

Nose is of bready belgian malts and pungent yeast.

Tastes of biscuity light malts, coriander, apricots, lemongrass. A nice mild bitter stale grassy hops aftertaste.

Mouthfeel is very creamy and smooth. Carbonation is champagne-like. This is very drinkable for the alcohol content. Every sip left me wanting more. This high ABV drink went down very fast.

Absolutely sublime tripel.

Photo of Beaver13
2.73/5  rDev -36.5%
look: 4 | smell: 2 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

750ml bottle. Pours a hazy gold with a huge frothy white head that retains well and laces the glass.

The aroma is sweet corny malts with some lightly spiced grassy hops and some alcohol. It's almost malt liquorish.

The flavor is sweet malts with a decent grassy hop finish and some spices (coriander). The is some noticeable alcohol in the finish and becomes pretty hot as it warms. The mouthfeel is medium to full with decent carbonation.

Overall, I've had much better Tripels. This was too strong in alcohol, overly sweet, and pretty simplistic.

Photo of dsa7783
4.47/5  rDev +4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

11.2 oz brown bottle with "Trappist Ale" on the logo sticker... Pours a very hazy and cloudy appearance... a definite straw-color... smell was replete with fresh citrus, florals, lemon, and slight spices... taste was very thick, rich, and satisfying, with pears, grapefruit, canteloupe, melon, citrus, and lemon essences that really dominated this brew and led to an all around outsanding creamy flavors... one of the better Tripels I've tasted for sure... this one is sure to please and satisfying... an excellent true-to-the-style Belgian brew... mouthfeel was superb - very rich and thick, creamy, sweet, and satisfying... esters and sugar-filled candies are certainly apparent in the overall complexion of this brew... Excellent drinkability despite the hefty 9.5% ABV... goes down very crisp and clean without the slightest hint of alcohol... One of the better Belgians out there... Definitely recommended...

Photo of BMan1113VR
4.33/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Poured with an extremely huge creamy white head. Yellow in color with what looks like extreme carbonation. Slightly hazy. Aroma was not great, lots of malt and yeast (broth), alcohol and orange hops were the highlights. Flavor was good, ending on a bitter note with a nice warming alcohol sensation. Goes down very nicely.

Photo of garymuchow
3.88/5  rDev -9.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Last year for the Super Bowl I did the Dubbel, so this year why not the Tripel. Poured into Ridel large wine glass, not a perfect type, but should do the trick.
Pours a bit cloudy yellow, pale gold. The bottle dripped some and I'm not sure what that's about. Very big full head.
Nice sweet malt aroma. Some strong fruity, yeasty aroma while pouring, almost like melons, but didn't pick it up much after that. Aroma isn't overpowering or overwhelming, but good enough.
Initial sips aren't as impressive as I expected. Fairly simple and straight-forward. Pale clean malt. Some intense sweetness, but actually quite low on fruit character. Rather strong dryness with long retention. Fruit starts to appear as warms and airs out, but so does a rather strong almost hot alcohol.
A couple of drinks towards the end showed what this beer could be - fruit, sweet, candi-fruit, fruity-candi, nice. But alas it was fleeting.
Thin side of moderate body with appropriate lightness with the carbonation. Somehow feels filling - maybe it's just all the snacks.
I expected more from this. Date on bottle is 26/1/08 (so it's either really fresh or just hitting "best by" date). There was a time in which this beer was a top 100 beer. This bottle wouldn't have been one.

Photo of jellycabbage
4.75/5  rDev +10.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

I was very happy to find the Belgian-owned Delhaize grocery store here in Cologne, which stocks a few Belgian beers for a very reasonable price (this 12 oz bottle literally rang up for less than an kiosk espresso). One can only drink so much kölsch in Cologne.

A copper orange color fills the snifter glass - thick, maybe even syrupy, but with great clarity. The smell is citrus and sweet. The same citrus impression follows into the taste, but with mild spice hints (pepper?) that give an already delicious, gloriously drinkable beer a considerable, but totally harmonious, complexity. The carbonation comes off very natural; not at all strong. That incredible warming effect comes on immediately; as soon as I swallow I can feel it quickly sweeping to the back of my mouth.

I could seriously drink this all night. A debate around this household this year centers on the superiority of either this bier or the Karmeliet Tripel. Anyway, it's certainly one of my favorite triples. It'll be a sad, sad day when I again find myself in a situation where I can't enjoy this every week.

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

11.2 oz bottle poured into a chalice.

A = Golden coloured, with a fair amount of floaties but I stumbled bringing it up from the cellar and simply could not wait to open it until it settled as that could have been hours. Formed a very pretty foamy white head.

S = Very sweet with smells of the yeast, summer fields, flowers, herbs, fresh earth. Very complex and very pleasing.

T = Strong taste of fresh grains and slight phenol from yeast, slight sourness in the finish. Very complex flavors which are very well balanced. It is hard to believe it is as strong as it is since it goes down very easily.

M = Smooth, full bodied, good mouth coat, good carbonation level.

D = Definitely a very good tripel. I highly recommend this one.

Photo of ndekke39
4.13/5  rDev -4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Drank this from a 330 ml bottle with a January 26, 2008 best-by date - oh, no I'm three days after the date! Decanted into a white wine glass. Poured initially with about two fingers of white foam that descends into a thick covering. Great retention with lots of lace. Color is a hazy golden yellow.

I can smell the glass from a foot away: there's a spicy fruit to it - bananas and apples. Brown sugar. Twinge of alcohol. Bready yeasty.

After the inviting aromas, the taste is a little disappointing. Mostly a mellow fruitiness with notes of the bready character. Touch of the brown sugar. I'm only a couple days past the best-by date, but maybe that's making a difference.

Mouthfeel sports a bright carbonation on the tongue. A little oily, too.

Overall, this is a great Belgian Tripel, but maybe it's just a tad past it's prime. Still, I'll definitely pick up one of these again.

Photo of SIRIUS2
4.78/5  rDev +11.2%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

A: Poured from a 750ml into a Westmalle chalice style glass; fantastic golden orange colors with near white head and excellent lacing.

S: Pleasant spice and citrus nose

T: Initially somewhat fruity with spicy notes in a relatively quick dry finish. Definitely warming but not in an obtrusive way.

M: Medium bodied with good carbonation

D: Smooth and enjoyable, especially for the alcohol present; A tripel to measure all against.

Easily my favorite Trappist and an absolute favorite in the Abbey style Tripel catagory. If it wasn't so cost prohibitive I would enjoy it much more often. Classic.

Photo of champ103
3.23/5  rDev -24.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A: This pours a lovely cloudy golden/orange color. A huge foamy head forms and leaves tons of sticky lace down my snifter.
S: A very strong aroma, but I don't find it very appealing. It is fruity with a bit of apricot, but it is also very pungent and funky.
T: Very tart, sweet, and kind of syrupy. Alcohol comes through as the beer warms. This is not the best tasting triple I have ever had.
D: The high alcohol content comes through and makes this hard to drink.

Overall, an average triple. This is not my favorite example of the style, but it is still worth a try.

Westmalle Trappist Tripel from Brouwerij Westmalle
96 out of 100 based on 3,898 ratings.