Dismiss Notice
Save $5 when you subscribe to 12 issues / year of BeerAdvocate magazine and select auto-renew.

Subscribe now →
Dismiss Notice
Join Our Email List →

And we'll send you the latest updates and offers from BeerAdvocate, because knowing is half the battle.
Dismiss Notice

Pre-order your Respect Beer "Hipster" Hoodie today!

Plus: Free shipping (US only) on orders of $25 or more until 12/18/15. Just select "Free Shipping" at checkout.

Shop now →

Westmalle Trappist Tripel - Brouwerij Westmalle

Not Rated.
Westmalle Trappist TripelWestmalle Trappist Tripel

Educational use only; do not reuse.

1,659 Reviews

(Read More)
Reviews: 1,659
Hads: 4,221
Avg: 4.28
pDev: 16.36%
Wants: 372
Gots: 654 | FT: 7
Brewed by:
Brouwerij Westmalle visit their website

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: Reviews & Ratings
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Westmalle Trappist Tripel Alström Bros
Reviews: 1,659 | Hads: 4,221
Photo of proc
4.2/5  rDev -1.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours out to a bright gold in the glass with an explosively, large head. Quite a bit of cloudiness follows the initial pour. The aroma reminds me a bit of bourbon. The taste is very good, and maintains a slightly spicy, peppery, Beligian profile. As the beer warmed the ABV seemed to come out more. This beer definetely needs its "happy" place, temperature-wise. Too cold or too warm detract from its quality.

 409 characters

Photo of joecast
3.8/5  rDev -11.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

large fluffy white head sits above a slightly cloudy, deep gold colored beer. plenty of tiny carbonation bubbles rising to the top.
full yeasty, banana aroma.
very strong flavor contributions from yeast, and alcohol. heavy maltiness thought not sweet. has a good level of bitterness, but cant tell if its coming from hops as there is no real obvious hop flavor, or if its coming from the high abv.
mouthfeel seems rather harsh which may be helped from some aging. this bottle is dated BB 8/06.
so this is what those monks spend all their time on. not a bad line of work if you can find it. myself, i would need time to get accustomed to a beer like this. it doesnt make any appologies for being as strong as it is, and possibly because of its youth, came off a bit rough around the edges.

 794 characters

Photo of SilentSabre
3.52/5  rDev -17.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This first thing I noticed right away with this one was a monstrous banana smell. There may very well be bananas in this one. A bit of cloves. Cloudy yellow orange in colour. Thin fizzy head than hangs around for a bit. Par for the course with Belgians. You know the drill. As much as it pains me to say so, this stuff really has a bitterness to it that I just totally do not care for. Very disappointed indeed. I have been looking forward to tasting this for quite some time now. The texture, or mouthfeel, is quite nice. Smooth and just heavy enough for the style. Again, I don't know what the hell is going on with the taste, but it seems offensively bitter. I am, however, just now getting over a sickness that has incapacitated me for last four days or so. Perhaps my sense of smell and taste are still a bit impaired. I certainly hope so. I should re-review this in about a week or so. Until then, tonights review stands.

 927 characters

Photo of RedBaron
4.82/5  rDev +12.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

First beer of '05. Wow.

Appearance: Hazy golden brew with spritzy, sustainable head.
Smell: Banana-y, slight clove and a nice, subtle dry hop aroma.
Taste: Complex malt and fruit flavors up front, a great yeastiness in the middle, and a wonderfully dry finish. Nice attenuation.
Mouthfeel: Bulky and divine! A nice, taut tripel that packs a solid punch. So much complexity with each sip.
Drinkability: A 'must sip' brew. This is one global great to be savored. I appreciate the yeasti-ness to this beer above all of the wonderful characteristics, and the fact that this beer is bottle-conditioned makes it quite evident and appealing. Outstanding.

 656 characters

Photo of MrBen
4.35/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This is a nice, sweet, and fruity tripel that doesn't hold back. Nice presentation, nose, and color. It scores high in my style points, though I did give slightly lower marks on mouthfeel and drinkability. Yes, I expected to find the alcohol on the nose and palette fairly quickly -- it is 9.5% ABV, after all -- but I felt that in combination with what I perceived to be a little too much carbonation at times, those two categories couldn't break the 4.0 mark. That said, it's still a fantastic beer. However, I prefer others in the same style, such as St. Bernardus Abt 12, Pater Lieven Tripel, etc.

 601 characters

Photo of Citadel82
4.5/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

This is a fine trippel. I really am enjoying it.

Pours a hazy amber gold with one finger of thick creamy ... very creamy head that leaves copius lace in the withdrawl as the beer is consumed.

Smell is fruity yeast and some maly with faintly discernable alcohol.

Taste is fruity malt with some hop bitterness developing as the sweetness fades. A little alcohol is there along with apples and plums.

Mouth feel is thick and slightly gassy.

Very drinkable for such a high gravity ale.

 497 characters

Photo of watermelonman
4.6/5  rDev +7.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

This poured to a bright and light shade of gold with a medium head that lasted well. It's some nice globs of lace.

The smell brings alcohol and esters. The taste adds citrus and fairly light malt. Malts take over, then alcohol and hops take the finish. The mouthfeel is bright and unique. The drinkability is outright dangerous.

 331 characters

Photo of Cwrw
4.35/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Trappists never disappoint. Westmalle Tripel poured golden, somewhat yellow, tangerine, or bright honey. There are definite orange and yellow hues, giving a dense appearance. Off-white, thick head, leaving patches of creamy, slow moving lace. The head started large, and kept at a very consistent cm of foam. Without the lees poured, this is a clear, translucent beer. The aroma is definitely malty, with some soapy yeast. When first poured I smelt massive fruity yeast and salty ham. Fruit and burnt candy; sugary once it warms. Buttery smells, nuts, chemical leather. Dried nectarine or grapes above the rim of the glass. Flowery a little, and definite salinity, or tangy acidity. Balanced, with sweet malt and yeast, and some faint spice. I smell also candied apples and red licorice. I tasted dry muskiness in the middle of the tongue, and a finish of caramel malt. Burnt leather also in the middle, giving a chemical tang. Up front, dry, dusty and sweet with fresh bananas. caramel, grassy hop, some sesame seed oil, some vanilla. The aftertaste is slightly hoppy, dry yeast, but mostly lightly roasted but delicious malt. Superb balance. No excessive dryness or must feel in the mouth. There is some citrus, akin to a witbier. Roasted nuttiness. This beer is not as alcoholic as expected for a 9.5%; indeed, there is little alcohol in the taste, only asserting itself by a warmth on the tongue. This is perfectly balanced betwixt the malt, sugar and yeast. What really impressed me was the mouthfeel, which was delectably CREAMY! This beer hits the tongue and becomes creamy like ice-cream, exceptionally smooth in the mouth. And this certainly does not suggest 9.5% alcohol, which means drinkability is incredible. Well-masked phenols. The lees were pea-soup green, and extremely milky looking. They tasted heavy and dusty, with less aftertaste. You will find new tastes and aromas every time you lift the glass with this tripel, yet, as complex as it is, it is quite approachable, for a Trappist tripel. Perfect with sharp cheese or pasta.

 2,047 characters

Photo of ghurux86
4.27/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

it's good.
appearance: color is a cloudy orange. a light orange. and the head is pretty nice. creamy and mostly whjite. at least a little stayed around most of the time. it does leave some decent lacing but nothing that stands out.
smell: very good. as always i could be completely wrong but i smell banana, orange and maybe some lemon. it smells sweet and great.
taste: it's good. the citris comes through slightly on the taste, but hops come through more. there is a definite taste of alcohol due to the 9.5% ABV. aftertaste is mostly alcohol.
mouthfeel is ok. not bad, not the best. it's pretty good but at times it seems like the carbonation could be cut back.
drinkability: it's good, too bad i don't have another! the overly alcohol aftertaste takes away from this one slightly.

overall a great great brew. would be a 5.0 if the alcohol wasn't so prevalent.

 871 characters

Photo of ddarden
4.1/5  rDev -4.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

I poured this beer into a Westmalle chalice and it had a foamy white head and what appears to be nice carbonation. The color is a slightly hazy, pale copper. As I take a nice deep inhale, there is an immediate smell of yeast, alcohol, and citrius.
The first sip of the beer yields very a yeasty, dry taste with an aftertaste of a slight lemon hoppiness. The mouthfeel is medium and very nice. By now, the head is a very thin layer with light lacing still left on the glass and the alcohol is little more apparent as it warms. The aftertaste last for a while with a nice hoppy, dry feel. This is a very drinkable beer.

 618 characters

Photo of DrunkMcDermott
3.62/5  rDev -15.4%
look: 5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a big white head that takes up half a tulip glass, then settles to a half inch of meringue. Body is dark yellow with some wit-like cloudiness. Smell is "clean," with a citrus and yeasty highlight. Alcohol is very upfront in the taste, and low level carbonation gives it an asti spumanti feel. Sweetness is vinous rather than malty. As others have suggested on the forums, this may be a hard style to understand. I certainly like it, but I keep expecting more of a "big beer" taste. But with this, I finally got to celebrate Easter with some beer made by monks (Oooh... I coulda had a Salvator, too!)

 605 characters

Photo of GreenWBush
4.41/5  rDev +3%
look: 3 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 5

$5.00/single, taken out of the discount tub of a local pub. No label; yeast collection ring and cap announce brewer and beer, respectively.

This poured out a perky peach-yellow with minimal sediment. Little to no head until vigorous pouring - only then did lace take its mark.

The nose of this beer was starkly bubble gummy; interspersed with wild fruit tones, especially lemon and orange. The hops take more of a presence on the nose than i'm used to per the style, which was a delight. With warmth the alcohol becomes a little less present but the fruits calm as well.

This is one damned tasty beer. So much going on; on one hand we've got a dry, hoppy, well-balanced sweet tripel. On the other hand there's a wine-y, starkly alcoholic effervescent creature lurking at colder temperatures.

The mouthfeel was slick with candied sugars and hop oil. This sucker went down waaaay to fast considering how expensive it was.

Fascinating. I would love to document how this one ages.

 991 characters

Photo of lackenhauser
4.12/5  rDev -3.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Somewhat hazy golden color-a tad darker in color then a golden ale. Great big head that receedes after a bit. Huge fruity aroma-pineapple? Almost reminds me of a mai tai!!!! A hint of vanilla. Earthy and sulphury flavor-slight sweetness and a dryness in the finsh. Somewhat astringent though not in an unpleasant way. Good body-slight puckering effect. A very drinkable brew-well worth seeking out. Thanks to bashiba for the trade sample.

 438 characters

Photo of smcolw
4.32/5  rDev +0.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Lots of chunkies floating around; straw yellow in color with a pleasant head that recedes to a thin layer of bubbles. Excellent sticky lace.

Strong pineapples in the aroma. There's also an earthiness to this, a mixture of pine needles and barnstalls.

Very rich, malty full flavors. There's the strong warmth of alcohol. This is wonderfully balanced--I'm used to trappist ales being all coyingly sweet malt. This beer is drier than those. The hop is much more pronounced, but this brew is far from being bitter. Interestingly, unlike other great beers that have the flavors fade in and out, this one is consistent yet complex blend of malt/hop.

This may be one the most drinkable trappist ales I've ever had. Other than the powerful alcohol warmth and the rich, rich body, this could be an excellent pale ale. With those differences, herein lies something special.

 872 characters

Photo of GCBrewingCo
4.84/5  rDev +13.1%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

The beer poured into the chalice hazy medium golden with a few chunkies. The head was white, tall and fell slowly to the edges of the surface and lasted to lace the glass.

The aroma was citrusy spice with coriander and and light fruity esters from alcohol. The alcohol esters tickled the nasal passages and behind the citrus and spice was a nice candy malty backbone.

The flavor was light and citrusy with restrained and very complex spiciness of coriander and clove. The citrusy flavor had a pineapple and candy sweetness that was well balanced by hop bittering to keep the beer in line. The flavors were well done and worked together harmoniously.

The finish was just dry and continued to dry out well into the aftertaste with pleasant lasting flavors of citrus and spice. The body was just above medium with a creamy texture and nice carbonation. Alcohol was present, but restrained and barely made itself noticeable except for some slight warming after consumption.

33 cl bottle. 22/03/03 on back label. This beer was ranked second for the tripels when I rated it, too bad I cannot send it over the top. Excellent beer!

 1,135 characters

Photo of alexgash
4.73/5  rDev +10.5%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours a hazy, golden honey apricot with a big, voluptuous white head. What a beauty this is. Way to go monks!
Sweet honey, candy sugar, fresh cut clover, tropical fruits (pineapple, passion fruit), peppery-spicy-hops, and a touch of alcohol all intertwine to create an sweet, herbal, medicinal delight. Aromatics are big and lean more toward the sweet side.
Palate starts off with moderately sweet malt flavors and hints of spicy hops. Then the big honey sweetness swells, along with some rummy fruit cocktail. Oh my this is sweet! As if on cue, an onslaught of peppery, herbal hops rings in with some balancing bitterness. The spicy, herbal bitterness and the sweet sugary malt fight it out as some medicinal alcohol sneaks in along with its friend yeast. All this crashes magnificently into a long, bittersweet finish, that's substantially warming. Terrific. This is a big-bodied ale that starts with a sparkling, tongue-tickling, effervescent feel and then moves hefty, mouth-coating feeling, that borders on syrupy. Although sweet and warming, this is surprisingly drinkable, and now I wish I had a 750 instead of this 330!

 1,131 characters

Photo of skybluewater
4.3/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours a murky yellow color. Smells of juicy fruit and maybe a little clove. Taste is wonderful, a little juicy fruit, a little yeast, with alcohol present, but not dominating. Despite that, this is a very drinkable brew (although I think I might revisit it in the summer months).

All in all, this one is darn good. Definitely a must-try.

 341 characters

Photo of crookedhalo
4.18/5  rDev -2.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

Best before 11/19/2005. Pours a flecky and hazed orangey peach color with a large, fluffy white head that lasts. Spicy, doughy and bubblegummy, cottoncandy like sweetness as well as a yeasty nose. It's rather diffiucult to pinpoint specific flavors, it starts estery and sweet, and the alcohol burn tries to meld with the dryness in the lightly bitter finish. Rather yeasty tasting (I decanted entire bottle), probably attributing to a majority of the esters, phenols and fusel alcohols. This tripel is majestic in the sense of its complexity. It's a slow-sipper and should be savored as such.

 593 characters

Photo of dgallina
4.7/5  rDev +9.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours a cloudy golden-orange, with a very firm and long-lasting white head which creates lots of lace on the glass. Fruity and viney aromas. Lots of spice and some alcohol. Sweet and winey initial flavors, which deepen with spices and balancing bitterness into the middle. Finishes quite dry and with strong carbonation; almost champagne-like. Long-lasting taste which slowly spreads warmth throughout the body. High alcohol content is very well-balanced, creating a complex and very satisfying beer.

 500 characters

Photo of bditty187
4.8/5  rDev +12.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Largely clear, some sediment slipped into my glass, the liquid was a magical shade of tawny-gold. It is simply beautiful. And this says nothing about the whipped foam topping the beery nectar. The head was at least three fingers in height, the white mass was rocky and it held very well. The head was slow to fade, at the lowest point it was still a finger in height. Impressive. Subsequent lacing was patchy but it clung very well. This beer is pure eye-candy; I’m digging it. The complexity of the nose is very impressive. There is no dominant aroma, nothing stands out but it is not like every aroma is yelling over each other. No they are quite egalitarian, sometimes a smell of hay leads the charge but other times it was funky horse blanket, then again a fruitiness coupled with spice spoke up. There is also pepper, and licorice, sometimes there was a suggestion of bubblegum. Sugary. Tart. Musty. Oranges. Apples in a wooden basket next to an open jar of ginger and nutmeg…boy, was that some poetic drivel or what! Maybe, but it is true. I wish the potency was louder but this is a common complaint with me. Very inviting, I need to stop smelling and take a sip. The palate does have a start and a finish and one hell of a middle! This is unlike the nose. Upfront the palate is raw and surprisingly hoppy, firm bitterness that lingers into the middle where it is quickly teamed up with some well-placed astringency. A bite of alcoholic heat cuts the party short, or so I thought, but in actuality more friends were invited to the party. And they were a fruity bunch! Oranges mainly, lemony citrus too, some apples and grapes in the mix, and these guys start to dance with some spicy ladies. Nutmeg, ginger, coriander, and pepper performed a tasty tango. There were yeasty moments as well but the finish was quite herbal with a noticeable blast of malt (rather clean, very nice!). This ending is quite firm, I like that. In the aftertaste a peppery jolt mixes with some fruit, bubblegum and razor sharp acidity, oh so dry! Bring on a platter of cheese and fruit, please. The palate is heavenly from start to finish. Complex and damn tasty! There is nothing I’d change about the taste. Medium in body, big, lively carbonation, the body is both firm and pliable. Yet there is a softness about it. This is another impressive aspect of this beer. So drinkable, it is yummy beyond words. I could drink this daily and surprisingly it is available in Omaha, where I purchased this bottle for $5.00. I will buy more. I have to. It is so good. This is the best Tripel I have ever had and second best is somewhere in a distant abyss. Highly recommended.

 2,653 characters

Photo of rajendra82
4.1/5  rDev -4.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Cloudy golden white body is topped by a billowing white head. The aroma is classic Belgian, with the farmhouse like smells of hay, horse blanket, and dust, along with pepper and mustard like spiciness. The taste is delicate, and a lot drier than others of the style. The alcohol is quite hot and spicy, and there is a fair level of hop bitterness as the beer laps the tongue. This Tripel does not try to hide the strength it possess, but instead tries to sweep you off your feet with it. Smooth and crisp mouthfeel only invites you to drink up and feel the magic.

 563 characters

Photo of etaggie09
4.37/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Appearance: butterscotch color with a quickly diminishing off-white head. low to moderate carbonation. a nice cloudy golden color.

Aroma: sweet fruity lemony smell with some apricot and other fruit in it. some nice alcohol smells.

Taste: lemony citric with a fruity alcoholic kick. Oh wow! Nicely balanced malt and hop flavor. Dry aftertaste. Man this is good.

Mouthfeel: Perfect for the style. good carbonation.

Drinkability: Alcohol is unnoticeable.

Notes: This is the nectar of the gods. I love this beer.

 523 characters

Photo of Rastacouere
3.95/5  rDev -7.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

From "Bistro des bières belges" on Montreal's south shore (bottle was 9,5% rather than 9 as shown here). The glass looks somehow oldish and interesting, looks even better once the golden beer is in it. It smells hmm.. perhaps yeasts and some hops too along with spices. The taste is more sour than most trappists I've had, alcohol level becomes obvious, spices stay on the tongue for a little time

 398 characters

Photo of Hhawk06
4.27/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

It poured nicely with a beatiful puffy well formed head and hazy dark gold body. The aroma is a true gift. Many good smells involved; clove/orange/spice/even cotton candy. On contact, it comes across as smooth yet peppery then soon transfers to coriander notes. The finish quickly shifts gears into a more bitter and grainy flavor. There is one last splash of a clove-like character deep in the palate. Another truly wonderful belgian offering.

 444 characters

Photo of CharlesRiver
4.58/5  rDev +7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Another trappist beer that I have been waiting to try. Love the bottle and label. This beer pours out a golden orange color with a good size white head that builds and builds. Extremely effervesant. Looks almost like a snow storm. The smell is sharp, sweet and dry. Fruity and spicy. The head looks just like a white cloud.

The taste is amazing! So smooth and complex, it just blows me away. Spicy with some hints of fruit in the beginning. The middle is dry and then gives way to some alcohol and warming notes. The aftertaste is where I find the hop bitterness. Just the right amount.

A couple things suprised me about this beer. First would be how crystal clear it is. Second would be how effervesant it is. These take nothing away from the beer, it just suprised me. Find it and drink it. I love it!

 809 characters

Westmalle Trappist Tripel from Brouwerij Westmalle
95 out of 100 based on 1,659 ratings.