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Westmalle Trappist Tripel - Brouwerij Westmalle

Not Rated.
Westmalle Trappist TripelWestmalle Trappist Tripel

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3,779 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 3,779
Reviews: 1,583
rAvg: 4.3
pDev: 10.23%
Wants: 267
Gots: 360 | FT: 4
Brewed by:
Brouwerij Westmalle visit their website

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: 3,779 | Reviews: 1,583 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of brewandbbq
4.1/5  rDev -4.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Vintage 1997
Best before 5/3/99

Pours hazy orangy gold, with moderate carbonation revealing a modest white head.
Densely packed froth is short-lived and settles into the goblet, leaving behind edging and a whispy skim-coat.
Aromatics are filled with dried hard fruit candies and hints of vanilla.
Tangerines, apricots, cherry bubble gum, with some light caramel notes.
Nose finishes slightly sweet with a wink of juniper and white pepper.
Body on the thin side of medium, mildly creamy and slightly sticky.
Pallet starts off with honey drizzled dried fruits dusted with spice.
Malt character is small with a light husky note under the peppery fruit.
Warming and slightly hot on the back of the throat.
Finishes dryingly, with some residuals and a light bitterness in tandem with spice.

Nine years old and only showing some subdued character with a lower carbonation level. Some slight oxidation shows itself in the quanine-like wince in the nose, and a hint of wet paper in the finish.

brewandbbq, Jun 12, 2006
Photo of CreamAle128
4.13/5  rDev -4%
look: 5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: Pours a pure white head, small bubbles, and very creamy looking, decent lacing on the glass. Nice yellow hugh to the beer.

Smell:Can smell some apricots, bit of citrus and hops, a bit of honey somewhere in the middle, behind all the other aromatics. Not too bad, not as good as the Achel though for smell. Just needs more of everything, too subtle.

Taste: Hops! this is by far the hoppiest Triple i have had. Tarty, slightly acidic, some soft fruits, that briefely come up, little alcohol, slightly pepper-like. Finshes with a quick, sharp, and strong bitterness, and lingers for a little while, with dryness. It seems as though there are many soft fruit complexities that are hidden behind all of the strong hop flavor/characteristics, its nice to try and be able to see if a person can find them. Makes the mouth water! P.S as the beer warms, the hop sharpness decreases.

Mouthfeel: Fairly creamy, coating, slight, and i mean very slight astringancy. Not bad!

Drinkability: A Joy to drink, i see this as a powerful triple that is to be respected for its strength, and is one to have on occasion. Can't have too many of these, for its intense flavour, not because of its alcohol.

I will revisit this again in the future

CreamAle128, Jun 10, 2006
Photo of Drew966
4.03/5  rDev -6.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Westmalle Trappist Tripel pours a luminescent copper with a small off-white head from a brown 33cl bottle. Aroma is dominated by an apricot like smell which is quite nice, a bit of alcohol is noticeable too. Sparkly carbonation. The alcohol is quite noticeable to me. Also, fruit is present, but the finish is definitely spicy. Very interesting beer. I'm going to have to revisit this one. Recommended.

Drew966, Jun 09, 2006
Photo of pootz
2.68/5  rDev -37.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2

Bottle poured a slightly clouded sparkling orange-gold ale into my trappist chalace. Discreet fluffy cap and wonderful lacing. Lively champagne-like effervescence.

The nose is greeted with an earthy-spicey-honey-apricot aroma..alcohol not overly obnoxious to the nose.

Medium body. Mouth feel is peppery from the carbonation/alcohol decernment.

Flavor is not overly complex with malt mixture, the dominant sweet brewer’s sugar mingles with caramel malt to give a sweet spiced cider tone, the hops are there but sit in the background providing a tartness reminiscent of sour apple with yeasty-earthy undertones...then the slap in the face... a short, dry, harsh alcoholic finish where the alcohol becomes very apparent and literally obliterates the flavor profile of the ale.

Not my cup of tea....not very drinkable and too sharp/harsh to be savored slowly. Perhaps a year or two in cellar will mellow it, but drunk fresh it's pretty harsh like a high classed euro strong beer. I echo Oakes sentiment: " what the hell is so special about this?"

pootz, Jun 07, 2006
Photo of bgraney
4.15/5  rDev -3.5%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured a deep gold with a huge white head. Lots of visual action, almost like staring into an aquarium. Fountains shooting up from the bottom of the glass.
Very nice extensive floral aroma with the expected alcohol presence.
Full of flavor which fills the entire mouth to the back of the tongue. I was expecting a little more variation to the taste. I had a Westmalle double at a restaurant recently and remember being more impressed with the flavor of that.
A smooth ride considering the alcohol content. You can definitely sip the night away with as many of these as you want.

bgraney, Jun 06, 2006
Photo of mcowgill
4.75/5  rDev +10.5%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A - Orange yellow with big creamy head that leaves a thin lacing around the glass. Sediment floating around.

S - Yeast aroma with lemon and spice

T - Citrusy, hoppy, nice belgian yeast taste

M - Full bodied, perfectly carbonated

D - Very drinkable potent tripel. One of the best I've had.

mcowgill, Jun 04, 2006
Photo of Phatz
4.65/5  rDev +8.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

This is as good as they get. A true Tripel straight from Belgium! It is more light and fruity than I would have expected but so remarkably easy to drink.

Appearance: Pours an orange yellow peach color.

Smell: This beer was very aromatic; filling the nose with zesty lemon, toasty malty and other sweet fruits.

Taste: Soft and fruity on the palate but with a nice mix of lively spices. Very balanced very smooth, lemony hops and sweet malts just sing.

Mouthfeel: Light weight but full and creamy in the mouth.

Drinkability: I have yet to have a better experience with any Tripel.

Hope this is helpful.

Phatz, Jun 02, 2006
Photo of instrumentality
4.03/5  rDev -6.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

I poured the contents of this small bottle into a pint glass. The body was a cloudy, yellowish color that looked quite similar to unfiltered apple cider. However, at first, this color took up only an inch or two at the bottom of the glass; the rest was filled by a bubbly, fluffy white head, more carbonated than any beer I've had. The head settled slowly to about half its original stature, allowing me to pour the remains of the beer from the bottle.

The scent was a potent mix rof champagne, apples, and peaches. It was quite unusual and refreshing.

Mouthfeel was very bubbly and burned somewhat from the alcohol.

The taste was unlike any beer I've had. It had a...sharpness? sourness? to it that reminded me a great deal of champagne, mingled with the subtle flavor of peaches.

As for drinkability, I interpret this to mean how easily I can down a bottle of the stuff. While I definitely enjoyed the flavor, it was something I would want in small doses as opposed to throwing back a couple at a time.

Again, this is a highly unique beer, at least coming from the perspective of someone who's not too well-versed in this style. This is the second Westmalle Tripel I've had, and there will definitely be a third, but probably not for some time.

instrumentality, May 30, 2006
Photo of Phocion
4/5  rDev -7%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours into a Westmalle chalice with a light, cloudy, golden color and a very rich, appetizing white head, leaving nice creamy lacing around the glass. Small bubbles throughout sneaking up to the top. This thing looks delicious.

Maybe it's just because I finished a Rochefort 10, but I'm not picking up any strong scents except for the fruit. Apricot would be my guess, with a hint of lemon peeking through as well.

Tripels have never been my favorite style of Belgian, but this is good. Not great, but good. Very tarty and acidic, but sweet at the same time. The alcohol content is definitely evident as well.

Medium-bodied, with a lot of carbonation. Nothing too special.

The carbonation is already getting to me, and it's a bit too dry as well. However, for the ABV it's a very drinkable beer.

Overall, it's a good beer, but if I'm going to drink a Westmalle, I'd prefer the Dubbel.

Phocion, May 30, 2006
Photo of Hautacam
4.15/5  rDev -3.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours clear with a huge head...like Duvel....makes you wait. Laces and drops to about 1/8" after several minutes. Lots of bubbles...pretty lively.
First whiff is faintly like a pilsner...then mild grainy, earthy, must.
Really complex taste...starts a little tart and yeasty..hay, grain, barnyard-wool , a little sweet malt...hops kick in with lemon/orange, pepper....alcohol shows up, but subtle....yeasty-malt dry finish. Aftertaste is a balance of malt, wool and hop bitter, and it lasts a while after each sip. Alcohol more evident as it warms up.
Mouthfeel is great...medium body...high carbonation.
All in all , a very nice Tripel...unique.

Hautacam, May 27, 2006
Photo of orsulacp
4.13/5  rDev -4%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

This poured a light copper with a bright white head and active carbonation. The smell seemed muted, a bit of clove and some citrus friut, not much else. The taste makes up for the smell, orange candy and a peppery spicy bite, the alcohol is hidden in the taste but I can feel it warming my stomach. Light mouthfeel, highly carbonated to add to the peppery bite. Very drinkable and refreshing.

orsulacp, May 22, 2006
Photo of bigman147
3.98/5  rDev -7.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Pour - Bright gold with a thick heavy white head. A lot of lacing on the glass. Also a noticible amount of sediment (yeast) in the glass. This gives it the combination of hazy unfiltered with the added benefit of allowing for proper cellaring.

Aroma - Very complex and ever changing. When I first opened the bottle, I was struck by the slight sulphidic/yeasty character. As the beer warmed slightly, I picked up more citrus (grapefruit/lemon) maybe even slight apricot. The yeast and malty aromas blending with the citrus makes for a pleasant aroma

Taste - 3 things stick out in my mind as far as taste. A very bready malty flavor that I found very pleasant. The sweetness was very forward and the bitterness as very late. The alcohol is very pronounced in the finish which makes me what to take the next sip before it develops completely. The taste is like a rollercoaster around my tongue (Sweet, Sour, Bitter). A little of everything and yet not too much of any. (thankfully no salty flavor)

Mouthfeel - Highly carbonated, very alcoholic finish. Bitterness is short but sweet without a horrible lingering.

Drinkability - This is tough. Its very good but I think the high alcohol @ 9.5 ABV%, it loses alot of the drinkable nature. Also the carbonation which is still very active is very filling. I found myself burping yeasty, sweet, hop bombs for a few hours after having it. Its very good and as many have stated "this is the mother of all tripels".

bigman147, May 14, 2006
Photo of Cresant
4/5  rDev -7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured into a Duvel tulip. 11.2 oz. dated 6/4/07. Purchased at Whole Foods.

Rocky big head peaked around 3 inches and slowly subsided to lace. The body was a hazy golden brown. Held to the light I could see that the etched "D" at the bottom of the tulip was a bubble factory, sending a constant stream of tiny fizz toward the surface.

Smell was very nice, multi-layered. Sweet malts, bread dough, pancake syrup, and apricots. Hops so intense it smelled like driving past A-B in St. Louis.

The taste did not match the lovely aroma. A bit of molasses and nice hops appearance. An oily creamy flavor. The alcohol (ETOH) was well hidden from my tastebuds but not my brain. As the beer warmed the ETOH became more evident. A brandy-like taste warmed my mouth.

The mouthfeel was filling and champagne-like. Pleasant ETOH burn.

I cannot drink more than one per sitting, but with the high ETOH I don't want/need more than one. A fulfilling sipper.

Cresant, May 14, 2006
Photo of NEhophead
4.25/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

330ml bottle. Best before: 11/7/07.

Bright gold with shades of deep brown. Dense, white head about a finger high with good stability, leading to walls of thin and condensed lacing. Plenty of noticeable sediment scattered throughout this Tripel.

Bright citric fruit: lemon, lime, apple, pear. Semi-sweet Belgian candy with a touch of coconut. A bit of a 'farmhouse' mustiness with a warming wave of sweetened alcohol.

An initial apple, lemon acidity joined by a mellow, candied sugar sweetness. An underlying, biscuit-tinged musty quality followed by a distinct corriander spice. A deep, warming alcohol flavor is accompanied by a brief, sharp acidic quality and a touch of spice. Wonderfully balanced combination of flavors.

Medium bodied; light and highly carbonated.

A nice balance between the many different flavors, and pretty damn drinkable at 9.5%abv. A remarkably clean Tripel.

NEhophead, May 11, 2006
Photo of longarm
4.43/5  rDev +3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Dated 7.15.06. Maybe I'm having this when it's a little too green, but I have to clean-out the fridge.

Fluffy white head caps this cloudy, strawlike brew with little floaties carried by carbonating bubbles. The head fades quickly to a thin, but noticeable layer leaving very little lacing.

Dried fruit, mostly lemons on the nose interlaced with floral hops and wheat.

Potent alcoholic bite with strong acidity at first but an exceptionally dry finish begs another sip. After warming a bit of bubblegum flavor makes an appearance.

Clean, medium bodied mouthfeel. Some residual sweetness is balanced by high alcoholic content.

Not for the faint of heart when it's this green, but still an exceptionally easy beer to drink. The abv weighs-in at 9.5% so be careful of a boomerang. Next time I'll stock-up on several and cellar them for a year or two. Should help smooth-out the finish. Great beer.

longarm, May 08, 2006
Photo of crwills
4.22/5  rDev -1.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Whoops, bad pour. I used an oversized wine glass, but still managed to overflow the damn thing. My bad.

Poured a cloudy gold with a MASSIVE fluffy head (obviously). Lots of lacing as it faded (which took basically the whole beer).

Aroma is bread, alcohol, dark fruits, some floral essences.

Tasty is sweet and malty, definitely some sourish grapes in the background, and berries. Great mouthfeel, thick and satisfying. Very little aftertaste.

This beer is extremely easy to drink, and I found myself wanting one (or two or three) more. Bad idea with 9.5 ABV. Beware! (But then drink it anyway).

crwills, May 04, 2006
Photo of ultralarry2006
2.55/5  rDev -40.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

Poured from a 750 ml bottle. Left a one finger head that quickly receded to just surface skim that did linger to the end. Sporadic lacing. Color is a densely hazy yellowy-orange amber.

Aroma - Sweet and spicy, and some alcoholic astringency.Can smell diacetyl. Little bit of candied fruit.

Taste - A bready malt at first, a surprise given that I could not detect it in the aroma. Gives way to a spicy alcohol medicinal taste. And that diacetyl that I mentioned. The alcohol makes its presence very known, which is something that always turns me off, even though I like, and actually prefer, high abv brews - but they have to do their best to make it as undetectable as possible, or at least integrate it into a sublime part of the overall flavor profile. Also, diacetyl is another major turn off to me. Finish is sweet and very dry.

Mouthfeel - full, with moderate carbonation. Leaves you very dry.

Drinkability - the high abv alone limits this to one serving of 750 ml ( or two 12 oz.'ers etc, you get the idea...), but for me this just wasn't something I'd want another one of, at any rate. The diacetyl and alcohol taste pretty much ruin this for me.

ultralarry2006, May 02, 2006
Photo of haz77
4.35/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A - Slighly cloudy gold in colour. Big head that sits two fingers thick. Medium looking carbonation.

S - Honey, lemon rind, pear, green apple, white pepper.

T - Citrus fruit up front, with the other, sweeter fruits and honey making their way forward in the middle. Sweetness build right to the end before being (minimally) cut back in the dry, phenolic aftertaste. Some alcohol warmth there too, though well masked.

M - Medium body, very smooth, with a nice moderate carbonation.

D - Very tasty beer. One of my favourite Tripels.

haz77, Apr 29, 2006
Photo of danielharper
3.65/5  rDev -15.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

Purchased from Strong Bros. Liquor, Fayetteville, TN.

(Beer consumed on 4/12/06. Verbatim notes follow.)

A: Orange-yellow body, thick white foamy head.

S: Strong citrus (oranges?) aroma, slightly yeasty.

T: Yeasty off-tasting Belgian flavor, some oranges.

M: Foamy and astringent mouthfeel, leaves warm alcoholic aftertaste.

D: Drinkable, good beer.

danielharper, Apr 25, 2006
Photo of rjlemos
4.7/5  rDev +9.3%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

What am I supposed to say about a Belgian Trappist Tripel ? That's awesome. Really awesome. Something totally singular, unique. Well, let's try to be technical...

A- Superb. It pours dark gold, but muddy. Great head, dense, that lasts forever.
S- Complexity !
T- Delicious. It goes realy nice and well, complex, but it starts to get goddamned strong in the end. The alcohol reveals itself and the aftertaste is really intense !
M- Great. It fills up your mouth and shows how strong it is !
D- It's not a beer to drink liters. In fact, it's really hard to drink quite much considering the amount of alcohol in it. It's a gourmet beer, not a six pack lousy soapy lager... but it goes really well. It's not a beer for sissies, you really have to be able to handle that !

Really great and unique ! We can say this is one of a kind, for sure.

rjlemos, Apr 22, 2006
Photo of fisherman34
3.55/5  rDev -17.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Gold in colour with a floatie or two, and well carbonated. Pleasing aromas of MacIntosh apple, pear, and a bit of spicy yeast. The fruit flavors become more lemon like on the palate, and mix well with the light malt and mild grassy hop notes. Surprisingly bitter finish, with notes of lemon rind at the end. A bit too dry for the style IMO (if that’s even possible). Not bad, but could be better.

fisherman34, Apr 20, 2006
Photo of allengarvin
4.83/5  rDev +12.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Hazy, tarnished gold color with lots of tiny floaters and a small but persistent head. Very fruity aroma (apricot & orange) with a spicy, bright, citrusy hop presence. Huge fresh hop flavor, spicy, with notes of basil or sage, with a biscuity malt flavor and fruity malt character, finishing dry, clean and delightfully bitter. Full carbonation but not too heavy.

Very close to perfect beer for me.

allengarvin, Apr 19, 2006
Photo of bierman2000
4.95/5  rDev +15.1%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

The quintessential Tripel, smooth, fruity, highly alcoholic only but not in the tatse at all .. it is well hidden under all the spices and malts that this beer has.. this is golden and pale yet packs vibrant flavors and the punch of alcohol when imbibed. savor slowly in the proper goblet to enjoy this beer at its best.

bierman2000, Apr 19, 2006
Photo of daliandragon
4.08/5  rDev -5.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Well, been waiting for the head in my goblet to go down so I could start this review for ten minutes now and its just barely receding.
Color is a cloudy orange cider and the mighty off-white head is commanding a solid inch and a quarter or more of goblet space. Lacing is starting to look impressive as well. One more pour and we'll start. Nose is yeasty and malty with faint spices. Cloves appear as well.
A little sip. Wow, powerful. Very malty all through the sip and cresendoed by a rush of alcohol right in the middle of the sip. A second draught reveals a multitude of fruit flavors and a refreshing finish. Mouthfeel is tight and highly bubbled, which seems like the style. Texture is smooth and quite easy on the throat.
This beer definitely improves as you progress through it. I also admit the beer may originally have been too cold. After the first sip and my my mouth adjusted to this powerful Belgian, This is an original beer, not quite like any beer that I can remember having. It took me a minute before I was able to figure out that this is a really good beer. If you like Belgians, you'll most certainly want to try this.

daliandragon, Apr 08, 2006
Photo of Crosling
3.23/5  rDev -24.9%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Light Gold. Dry, spicy and very yeasty aroma with scents of sweet fruity pale malts, herbs, bubble gum, lemon, tropical fruits, and noble hops. Strong bubble gum notes continue on towards the flavor profile, especially on the finish, along with notes of cotton candy, lemon and fruit. A nice beer. But there are so many better example of the style.

Crosling, Mar 27, 2006
Westmalle Trappist Tripel from Brouwerij Westmalle
96 out of 100 based on 3,779 ratings.