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Westmalle Trappist Tripel - Brouwerij Westmalle

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Westmalle Trappist TripelWestmalle Trappist Tripel

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BA SCORE
95
world-class

1,641 Reviews
THE BROS
100
world-class

(Read More)
Reviews: 1,641
Hads: 4,158
rAvg: 4.27
pDev: 9.37%
Wants: 359
Gots: 595 | FT: 6
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: Reviews & Ratings
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Reviews: 1,641 | Hads: 4,158
Photo of Sammy
4/5  rDev -6.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Chewy yeast, and creaminess weight and barley malt. . Get the right glass. Balanced but alcohol is there. Carbonation, significant fruit and some spice. Complex aroma and taste.
Had a year later and really appreciated beautiful head and doughiness. Had a fresh bottle two years later and really noticed mouthfeel, pineapple ester.
Seven years later, and pineapple in a good Belgian yeast. (388 characters)

Photo of UCLABrewN84
4.42/5  rDev +3.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Best before 5/26/12.

Pours a murky light orange with a 3 inch foamy off-white head that settles to a craggy cap. Chunky streaks of foam line the glass on the drink down. Smell is of white grapes, green apples, citrus fruit, spices, and yeast aromas. Taste is of white grape juice, citrus zest, spices, and mild Belgian yeast. There is a mild bitterness on the palate after each sip. This beer has a medium body and a crisp level of carbonation. Overall, this is a really good tripel and another great beer from Westmalle. (522 characters)

Photo of metter98
4.13/5  rDev -3.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A: It poured hazy golden yellow into a snifter glass with a huge, foamy white head. There's a medium level of carbonation and a good amount of head retention.
S: Aromas of alcohol are present in the nose, along with smells of spices and yeast.
T: The taste is very complex, well balanced and includes some bitterness from the hops, sweetness in the form of candi sugars, yeastiness, and spices.
M: The beer feels medium-bodied on the palate and rather strong. The finish feels both dry and sweet and the carbonation lends a good degree of smoothness.
D: This beer is a definite sipper (but in a good way). (605 characters)

Photo of Thorpe429
4.37/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A: Pours a hazy straw color with a nice white head and some pretty good lacing.

S: Nice yeasty spiciness atop some slightly-sweet malt character. A bit of alcohol.

T: Beautiful spicy character with plenty of powerful fruit coming through as well. Vague hop character in the background.

M: Nice and quite crisp. Excellent carbonation and feel overall.

D: The classic of the style, and something I'd always like to have a little bit of lying around. (452 characters)

Photo of StonedTrippin
3.93/5  rDev -8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

probably my favorite of the trappist tripels. pours a clearish straw golden color with an excellent white head. light and airy. smells like a farm in august, cut grass, hay, pollen, and of course the belgian yeast. taste is a little sweet, but not bad as tripels go, well hidden alcohol, grassy hops, fruity and light spice as it wanes. even a hint of banana in there. epic mouthfeel, with tons of bright carbonation and a light body. overall a damn good tripel, exemplary of the style, but just a touch too light. doesnt arouse me necessarily, but its a nice easy drinking quality ale (585 characters)

Photo of brentk56
4.34/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Appearance: Pours a hazy honey color with a fluffy white head that leaves plenty of soapy lacing around the sides of the glass

Smell: Extremely complex and each time I sniff I pick up different aromas - apricot, vanilla, balsa wood, barnyard funk, candy sugar, banana, and medicinal tones

Taste: Expecting the usual tripel profile, I was quite surprised not to pick up the sweet tones on the front of the palate; starts out very yeasty and bready with some unripe tropical fruit and green apple flavors that are quickly subsumed by a bitter, almost medicinal aspect; the finish is quite unusual, with the bitterness dominating in a not unpleasant way

Mouthfeel: Medium bodied and velvety, with plenty of carbonation

Drinkability: With its tannic bitterness, this is not a beer I want to consume in quantity, but it is an interesting change of pace and would work well with sharp cheese (889 characters)

Photo of Knapp85
4.3/5  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. (542 characters)

Photo of BEERchitect
4.5/5  rDev +5.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

This is among the best of the trappist. Looks peachy and coppery. Highly carbonated and formed a rocky and persitant foamstand that laced well and shows good legging. Smells very sweet of honey, fresh fruits and berries, spices, alcohol, and that unique belgian souring. Tastes malty and candy sweet. Powdered sugar and honey. Sweet fruits of pears, peaches, and raspberries. Spices of clove, corriander, all-spice, ginger and pepper. Sweet alcohol becomes a bit harsh and phenolic in flavor. Remains firm in body throughout the session. High, sweet alcohol combined with the carbonation becomes numbing and playful through the entire mouth. Finishes dry and hot, leaving mild tartness, sourness and lingering hop flavor (noble varieties). This is a very complex and well matured, handled beer. I'm sorry that I have passed this one up so many times previously. (861 characters)

Photo of Phyl21ca
4.28/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Bottle: Poured a hazy yellow/brown colored brew with a huge bubbly head with better then expected retention. Aroma is quite complex with some different spices that are quite hard to identify and no trace of that high level of ABV. Carbonation is great with an above average body but still lighter then expected, I also noticed a lot of less or sediment floating around. Taste is quite refreshing with again the mix of spice overshadowing the malts and hops. Overall, a very good tripel but still not enough to make this the best Trappist. (538 characters)

Photo of largadeer
4.5/5  rDev +5.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Appearance: Cloudy, blonde, effervescent body with a big foamy head that never dissipates. Looks pretty damn appealing.

Smell: Citrusy, grassy, earthy. No trace of alcohol, despite the 9.5% ABV.

Taste: The alcohol is well-hidden under layers of flavor. Perfectly balanced between malty sweetness and bitter/sour citrus, a touch of hops, and a very clean finish. A tad drier than many Belgians.

Mouth: This is rich stuff for such a pale beer. Full-bodied, oily, and crisply carbonated like champagne.

Drinkability: I could easily drink several, but I'd probably pass out in a drunken haze pretty quickly. (607 characters)

Photo of biboergosum
4.05/5  rDev -5.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

330ml bottle. I always like it when I find an old-school beer with no English marketing on the label - leave it to those monks to not pander to the outside world - French and Dutch it is.

This beer pours a hazy pale golden orange hue, with a sizable amount of puffy, foamy white head, which leaves big swaths of sudsy lace as it genially recedes. There is also a fine, grainy sediment swirling throughout the glass.

It smells of yeasty rising white bread, dried banana chips, biscuity malt, a touch of bittersweet vinegar, spicy clove, orange cream, white pear, and a subtle musty, ethereally funky note. The taste is big fruity malt - lemon, orange, banana, overripe pear, and stewed white grapes - moderately tangy black pepper and clove spice, a touch of wine-friendly yeast, and a subtle warming alcohol edge.

The carbonation is big, frothy, and quite noticeable throughout, the body medium-full in weight and solid in other somewhat less tangible ways, including a crazily unassailed smoothness. It finishes generally off-dry, the fruity malt sweetness persisting and the booze coming round to bear.

A pretty heady affair, this one is - the fruit character being pleasant enough, and the big ABV doing well to keep the collateral damage to a minimum. Overall, this is rather enjoyable, and a well balanced example of this usually heat-skewed style. Those monks tend to have such a deftly mollifying effect, it would seem. (1,432 characters)

Photo of BuckeyeNation
4.38/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Coruscating gold with plumes of particulates so fine they nearly escape notice. The head is breathtaking in its magnificence. It's bright white, huge and hugely rocky. Scattered chunks of lace cling to the sides of the glass, although they could be more numerous. A second pour further animates the beer and breathes even more life into the beautiful crown of foam.

The nose is more spicy than fruity and falls just short of the bar set by the appearance. It's a little lacking in depth and breadth, but I'll reserve final judgment until more of the foam is gone. The aroma is of spiced pears and musky hops with an overlay of well-integrated alcohol.

Westmalle Trappist is an excellent tripel. While it's more boozy than most, that doesn't bother me a bit. The alcohol is so well-incorporated and such an integral part of the flavor profile that to lessen it would be to lessen the beer as a whole. Overall, I'd say it's less fruity and less sweet than most. The emphasis here is on spices (white pepper, cardamon, clove) and an almost arid dryness.

I prefer more candi sugar, but it's hard to argue with the bracing, snappy dryness. Westmalle Tripel isn't a training wheels tripel and it forces its drinker to appreciate it on its own terms or not at all. As expected, it opens up with warming and the various aspects of its personality become both better defined and more tightly interwoven. This is great beer.

The mouthfeel is medium-full. Like most Belgian beer, it feels lighter and more airy thanks to the abundant carbonation. The best word that I can think of to describe the mouthfeel is 'quality'. Less or more of anything wouldn't work nearly as well.

Westmalle Tripel is one of the best examples of the style that I've ever had, along with the outstanding De Dolle Dulle Teve. Even though it doesn't taste like what I've always thought was my preferred tripel profile (fruitier and sweeter), it's still more than impressive and is compulsively drinkable. Bottom line: this tripel is a home run. (2,023 characters)

Photo of zeff80
4.48/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A - Poured into a chalice. It had an orange/pumpkin color. Nice 3-finger head. it left very nice lacing.

S - It smelled of citrus, yeast and alcohol.

T - The taste was an intersting mix of citrus and mild spiciness. The alcohol taste really came through as it warmed up.

M - It was fairly crisp and medium-bodied.

D - Another great tripel from Belgium. It is one that I will pick up again and again. (411 characters)

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

Always around on nearly every shelf I see I decided to finally grab one and give it a proper try, after all, I have to. Poured into a which birch chalice and consumed on 08/13/2010.

The pour was a nice and cloudy golden yellow with a firm head of white perched on top for good measure. Settling quickly it left a decent amount of lace and a small puff on top.

Aroma is full of pears, apples, hints of light grasses and grains. Classic triple with a bit more fruit thrown in. Warming brings about alot more grassy notes and hints of light citrus which carry over well into the flavor. Smooth, loaded with light fruits that pop as it comes up near room temperature. Nice touches of light grains and a smooth, even feel hide the alcohol almost completely.

Overall not the best triple I have ever had, but it is very good. Very smooth and maybe one of the easiest to drink I have seen. Certainly worth a try. (908 characters)

Photo of oberon
3.93/5  rDev -8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Pours a deep hazy golden color with a huge blooming head that leaves a masive amount of lacing,I get a large dose of grassy hopps in the aroma with a light spiciness.Flavor has a smoky quality along with a big dose of grassy hop finishing big and spicey.A beer full of flavor just what I was looking for very well done. (319 characters)

Photo of wethorseblanket
4.25/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Pours a slightly hazed dark straw under a huge white head which lingers long. Aromas of spring fruit and yeast. Tastes of honey, caramel sweetness, fruity, slight spices. Fairly strong ABV so go slow. (200 characters)

Photo of womencantsail
4.22/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

A: The pour is a golden yellow color with an initially towering white head that eventually dies down to a finger's worth of foam.

S: Sweet malt and candi sugar come through initially with the yeast contributions following that. Pears, apples, and bananas provide some nice fruitiness.

T: The sugar component is quite strong and provides a great sweetness. Some banana bread sort of flavor along with a light bitterness.

M: The body is medium with a very full carbonation. Despite the sweetness of the beer, there's a nice dryness due to the carbonation.

D: I wish it tasted as good as it smelled, but still quite nice. One of the better tripels I've had. (658 characters)

Photo of ChainGangGuy
3.17/5  rDev -25.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Appearance: Pale straw-colored body topped with a profuse, foamy white head.

Smell: The aroma is marked by citrus, green apples tartness, and candy sugar. Slight hints of the alcohol content peek through in the nose.

Taste: All at once, it's sweet, citrusy, and spicy. Very much like a dry white wine. Wraps up with a rather pronounced alcohol finish full of yeasty notes.

Mouthfeel: Medium-thin body that is slightly watery with a fizzy cabonation.

Drinkability: A rather dispiriting experience. Sadly, this is one of my least favorite of the trappist beers. (571 characters)

Photo of nickfl
3.82/5  rDev -10.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A - Large rocky head, hazy saffron color.

S - Phenolic spyciness and herbal hops. Earthy and a bit fruity.

T - Grainy and spicy with solid hop bitterness on the back of the tougue. Long, medicinal/ herbal finish.

M - Quite dry with high carbonation. Fairly astringent as well.

D - The carbonation helps the drinkability, but I have a hard time wanting more than one of these. Much spicer and less fruity than other beers of a similar style and it is very medicinal, which I can't say I enjoy. (504 characters)

Photo of TheManiacalOne
4.4/5  rDev +3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from an 11.2oz bottle into a US tumbler pint glass.

A: The beer is a bright gold color with a large foamy white head that fades slowly and leaves a thick lace on the glass.

S: The aroma is of light malts, Belgian yeast, banana, citrus, some hops and spice.

T: The taste is excellently balanced with flavors of Belgian yeast, banana, lemon, spice and pale hops. The malt character is a little on the thin side, but it's not as if you need it to be any heavier in this case. The after-taste is a little bready and slightly sweet.

M: Crisp and very smooth, medium body, medium carbonation, very clean finish.

D: Very tasty, goes down quite easily, not very filling, great representation of style.

There are two quick personal stories I think I need to relate regarding this beer. The first is that when I bought this beer I was afraid it may be past its prime and questioned the date on the bottle (http://beeradvocate.com/forum/read/903581) because the same store might occasionally try to sell a less-than-fresh bottle to you by placing a red, clearance price tag on it. Some fellow BA's at the time helped me realize that the date was "best before 5/18/08" and that the beer would be fine and I thank them for that. The second story (which happened before story #1) is that two people whose opinions of beer I deeply respect tried this beer at the same exact time with their backs turned to each other so each wouldn't see the reaction of the other. When they turned around, both of them had shocked looks on their faces and were amazed at how great the beer tasted. While I may not like the beer as much as they did, I can certainly see why they were so amazed. (1,676 characters)

Photo of LXIXME
4.75/5  rDev +11.2%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

A real big off white long lasting head rests above a almost clear particle filled golden honey colored well carbonated beer.

A well balanced nose with a multitude of smells coming through, cloves, banana, grains, yeast, prunes, grapes, and light spices.

Grains are mixed with light fruits and lighter spices to give this beer a well balanced easy to drink taste that isn't weak at the same time.

A medium bodied beer that seems to have a very slight syrupy quality that lends itself to a light dry aftertaste that has quite a bit of a lingering quality.

I could drink quite a few of these, if your buying, a little pricey compared the bulk of the beers around here. (669 characters)

Photo of Jason
4.92/5  rDev +15.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

You can find this one just as much as the Double in Belgium and everywhere in Brussels. Sweet nectar of the gods I could not get enough of it ... it was so damn fresh even the bottles that I drank at 1:00 am in my hotel room to put me asleep were obviously ten times fresher than what we get in the states. (306 characters)

Photo of RblWthACoz
4.03/5  rDev -5.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours cloudy gold with a monstrous head that lingers for a very long time. Lacing quite present. The nose is extremely sweet with strong citric tones. Even and smooth on the mouth with malty sweetness and a bit of a bitter edge that follows on the trail end. Mouthfeel is typical. You could drink a lot of this in a sitting...if you could tolerate the 9.5% alcohol. This is a great brew whose best feature and contribution to beer world is that it is so readily available and has probably helped enlighten a lot of people as to what the possibilities for beer are. (564 characters)

Photo of russpowell
4.94/5  rDev +15.7%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

750 ml bottle with ths code on the neck: 09/05/07 think it means sept 07?? If not this will only get better!

Pours honey colored & effervescent with 3 fingers of fluffy white head. Nice filmy head with some lacing all the way down

S: Slight appleskins with fruitty scents up front, these intensify as the ale warms

T: Rich fruitty ( apples, pears, lemons & others) taste up front. The yeasty notes & honey sweetness as the ale warms. This kind of reminds me of cider, perry or sparkling wine as it warms in many ways. Finishes with fruittyness, warming sensations, &grapefruitty hops

MF: Spritzy, perfect carbonation& balance

Very drinkable. a supper tripel (usually not my style). A bit pricey, but a nice holiday indulgence, easily sets the pace for this style (778 characters)

Photo of Rifugium
4.3/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

First had: bottle at Eulogy, Philly, PA

Easily one of my favorite beers. Pours properly into a signature chalice, a golden-brown with tints of apricot, cloudy with a fluffy off-white head that sinks to about a quarter to half inch and retains as such just about to the end, leaving some attractive lacing behind. Complex aroma of yeast, fruit salad, alcohol-soaked wood, caramel and candi sugar. Good to let it warm up before tasting...don't want it ice cold. Nice cavalcade of flavors on the palate, with notes of caramel, toffee, bready yeast, bananas, pears, apricots, raisins, grape skins, lightly roasted nuts. Subtly hopped. Medium body, very distinguished and highly drinkable. You feel like royalty drinking from the chalice too. (738 characters)

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Westmalle Trappist Tripel from Brouwerij Westmalle
95 out of 100 based on 1,641 ratings.