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Tripel Overhead (Bourbon Barrel-aged) - Mother Earth Brewing

Not Rated.
Tripel Overhead (Bourbon Barrel-aged)Tripel Overhead (Bourbon Barrel-aged)

Educational use only; do not reuse.
very good

120 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 120
Reviews: 52
rAvg: 3.99
pDev: 14.04%
Wants: 22
Gots: 21 | FT: 1
Brewed by:
Mother Earth Brewing visit their website
North Carolina, United States

Style | ABV
Tripel |  9.00% ABV

Availability: Spring

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: cvstrickland on 05-04-2010

No notes at this time.
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 120 | Reviews: 52 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of bob727
5/5  rDev +25.3%

Photo of Rempo
4/5  rDev +0.3%

Photo of meich75
5/5  rDev +25.3%

Photo of NCbeerpirate
5/5  rDev +25.3%

Photo of ShanePB
3.73/5  rDev -6.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Bottle acquired by Nick straight from North Carolina, thanks dude! I've been on a Tripel kick lately and am always excited to try something new from Mother Earth. 750 ml corked and caged bottle, poured into two tulip glasses.

A: Cloudy golden bronze with a ever so slightly off-white head. The retention cap covers the entire surface and there are really clingy patches of lacing all over. It's a really nice looking beer but perhaps a bit darker in the body than most Tripels.

S: Massive yeasty notes come off strong in the aroma along with a whiff of alcohol. For being such dominating aromas on their own this threw me off for a second. Honeycomb, sweet caramel malt and caramel apple come through near the end. It smells way more malt and yeast forward than other Tripels, and doesn't seem to strike a good balance.

T: Big alcohol notes are noticeable around mid-palate and well into the finish. Unfortunately these flavors are quite intense and initially mask any flavor present. Belgian yeast elements make their mark along with very bready malts. Overripe citrus fruits are along with the alcohol burn in the finish and just a few seconds into the linger.

M: Fairly active carbonation, nice and fizzy on the palate. It's the mouth feel you'd expect for the style, really well done in this area.

Overall, this wasn't too impressive in comparison to other quality Tripels (both domestic and international). The flavors seemed strikingly unbalanced and in need of some refinement. Other than that, it had all the typical elements you'd expect right down to the great mouth feel but everything else needs to be tied together better.

Photo of woosterbill
4.08/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12oz bottle from 04/10, obtained via an in-person trade at DLD '11. Let's see how 18 months have treated this beer.

A: Hazy orange body with a half-inch cap of fizzy white head; mediocre retention and light lace. Ok.

S: Huge, huge bourbon completely dominates, and pleasantly so. Behind the booze lie caramel, apple, and vanilla. It's definitely a bit unbalanced, but the whiskey stands out more than the straight alcohol so I'm really digging it.

T: Follows the nose: bourbon, bourbon, bourbon, caramel, vanilla, and booze. Definitely a bit hot on the finish, but otherwise delightful.

M: Creamy, lively medium body. Solid.

O: This one smells absolutely incredible, but the major booziness keeps it from being a real gem. If it's this hot after a year and a half, I'm sure it was tough to drink when fresh. I think I'll sit on my other bottle for a while.


Photo of rockyfire
4.68/5  rDev +17.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Appearance: Poured into a crystal sniffer. Cloudy reddish orange with a thick, creamy white head. Excellent head retention. Very smooth head. Light swirling revives the head to full size.

Smell: Apple, pear, pepper, grass, and a strong alcohol scent. There's also a lot of a wood aroma.

Taste: Smoky and slightly toasty flavor. Sweet, dry scotch flavor. Sandy, with a big malty and fruity flavor. Light apple, lemon, and a crisp wood flavor that lasts through into the aftertaste. The wood is very much oak and bourbon in flavor. Earthy and gritty in a good way. A light hop ending as well with a bit of yeasty spice. There's also a very light lingering alcohol flavor that is balanced very well with the woody malt flavors. This tastes great. It is not your ordinary tripel.

Mouthfeel: Very smooth and velvety. Well carbonated but not sharp on the palate at all. Coats the palate very well and the flavor opens up nicely.

Drinkability: This beer is absolutely delectable. Wonderfully smooth with a balanced and complex flavor. Other brewers should strive to brew something this good. Need to share this with someone. I wish they made this all year.

Photo of HopHead84
3.65/5  rDev -8.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5


Bottle shared by Andrew, thanks!

A: Dark orange with a small white head.

S: Pronounced bourbon and oak with a dash of vanilla and a strong bubblegum presence. Malt is bready and sweet with a sugar notes. Apple is faint.

T: Bread and grain with sugar and bubblegum. Bourbon is light and oak is evident. The beer is quite sweet and alcohol is strong in the finish.

M: Medium in body with upper medium carbonation.

Overall: Smelled better than it tasted, and a little too sweet, but still enjoyable.

Photo of womencantsail
3.68/5  rDev -7.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks for this bottle, Carl.

A: The beer pours a slightly cloudy golden orange color with a finger or two of white head.

S: The barrel has really taken over here. Lots of oak, vanilla, and bourbon notes. The more base Tripel aromas are there, but underneath. A decent amount of banana as well as some sugar, graham cracker, and bubblegum.

T: The flavor is much the same, though it's a bit more fruity and sweet. Heavy on the bourbon and oak with a mild citrus note, banana, and plenty more sugar and bubblegum flavors.

M: Medium bodied with a medium level of carbonation.

O: Not very Tripel-like anymore, but still pretty good.

Photo of Pencible
3.78/5  rDev -5.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

A: This poured a cloudy dark gold with a bit of white head.
S: It smelled like toasted oak and vanilla and coconut, with some apricot hops and sour yeast and vinegar.
T: It tasted like apricot and oak and sour yeast, with some coconut and vanilla and vinegar. It had a sweet and sour aftertaste with alcohol warming.
M: It was watery with moderate carbonation. Decent body.
D: This wasn't a very refined beer, seeming more like a shot of bourbon poured into a mediocre tripel. But it's still enjoyable, if you enjoy bourbon. It was a bit hot with weak body, so it wasn't that easy to drink. Age probably wouldn't help, so this is as good as it gets. An interesting experimental beer that I personally enjoyed, since I'm a sucker for bourbon beers, but not great.

Photo of AgentZero
2.85/5  rDev -28.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 2

Thanks to Alex for sharing this one.

A - Orangish bodied beer with a bit of a white head that left some spots on the side.

S - I guess this is a tripel, but bourbon and barrel have obliterated it. Bourbon, wood, vanilla, candy corns, some belgian yeast I think and fruits, but not really.

T - It tastes like bourbon, candy corns, wood, decent amount of alcohol. You get the underlying tripel if you look for it in candied sugar, stone fruits, and some yeast, but it doesn't really matter.

M - Lower carbonation, lighter side of medium bodied.

O - This didn't work, just take any lighter flavored beer and leave it in a barrel to long and it will probably taste like this. Not saying it tastes bad per se, but it's just not good take on a tripel.

Photo of Verecund
2.13/5  rDev -46.6%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 2

On tap at Harrika's in Swansboro, NC. I've had this in both 2010 (12 oz.) and 2011 (750ml) formats from the bottle, and the former is better than the latter. This rate is for the 2011 version on tap.

Pours a hazy caramel-amber with half a finger of head. Okay lacing, but this is one hazy tripel.

Almost nothing distinguishable on the nose. Pale malts, honey sweetness, faint (cheap bourbon), and a touch of vanilla. The 2010 version had a hint of tropical fruit and the bourbon was more pronounced. This is a mess. Also, there's a strong whiff of floor cleaner/solventy booze.

Fairly one-note: sweet honey and faint bourbon. A small hint of coconut, though nothing like last year's. No tripel base to speak of. A good bit of booziness.

Medium carbonation and creamy. A little boozy.

A huge mess. I would give last year's version around a B, but this is muddled and messy. I don't know if I could pinpoint the base style if I didn't know and the bourbon - which was too strong last year - is too faint. This recipe needs to be dialed in. What happened to the coconut from the barrel and the fruity tripel characteristics?

Do not buy this beer at $17/750ml.

Photo of GehenHerzog
4.3/5  rDev +7.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A 750ml bottle purchased from Brawley's Beverage in Charlotte. Poured into a Skull Coast Pint Glass

A- Pours a deep orange with a half finger white head, no lacing at all (pour choice of glass though

S- Not getting a whole lot. Up front it's mainly caramel then a lot of Vanilla, and oak scent.

T- Up front its strong vanilla and oak bourbon flavors. A little bit of citrus and a belgian yeast flavor on the back end. I love the way this tastes. It's on the verge of being to overpowering with the bourbon flavors but it's just right. Slight caramel flavor as well.

M- Medium body and carbonation. Read a lot of reviews of Mother Beers being too carbonated but this one is just about right.

D- The alcohol isn't present at all for a relatively big beer.

Mother Earth continues to do barrel aged beers well (Silent Night is awesome). I am really surprised at such a low rating. I am positive I will buy another bottle of this. Such a great beer.

Photo of n2185
4.08/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Pours a hazy orange with a finger of white head that recedes into a thin layer with a little lacing.

S: Coriander and cloves up front followed by a bit of a floral, orange-like aroma. Vanilla, caramel, and smooth bourbon follow, mixing well with the tripel aromas.

T: Similar to the aromas, there are some spicy Belgian notes up front followed by some sweet citrus flavors. The bourbon kicks in afterward, accompanied by vanilla and caramel. The finish is dry with a surprisingly slight alcohol burn and a lightly bitter yeast flavor.

M: Medium body and carbonation, this beer is a bit thicker than I like in tripels, but it's understandable with bourbon barrel aging. Still, the beer manages to have a pretty dry finish and overall is lighter than most high gravity bbal beers.

O: A surprisingly good beer. When I first poured it, the bourbon seemed to wipe out all of the tripel flavors. As it warmed, though, the Belgian flavors began to come through. Very well-balanced and not overpowering at all, despite being fresh. Even though I prefer tripels to be light, dry, and crisp, I wish this one were a touch sweeter and less dry to better accompany the bourbon flavors.

Photo of rmalinowski4
4.15/5  rDev +4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pours a redish, golden yellow with little head. Poured very gently to keep large amount of sediment in the bottle.

The smell is strong warm apple cider with a cinnamon stick in it. There is some bourbon and vanilla in the background also. Smell is simply Devine.

The taste is earthy spice from the yeast, cinnamon, bourbon, vanilla, apple, and some bready malt. Very complex, but the spice is the dominant flavor, it is a little too strong. There is some mild bourbon on the finish.

There is moderate carbonation, you can feel the bubbles dance on your palate. The mouthfeel is medium, just right for the style.

Overall, this is a pretty good beer, different from most tripels I have had, but still very tasty. I would love to get this as an extra in I trade. Received my bottle from Wcholiff in the noob round 3 BIF.

Photo of Neffbeer
3.53/5  rDev -11.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Thanks to BucketBoy for this extra
12oz bottle into a Portsmouth tulip.

A: It pours a murky golden color with zero clarity. It yields a small one finger head that vanished quickly leaving decent lacing.

S: Big bourbon notes come rushing from the glass. Smokey vanilla, caramel, and oak are the dominant forces.

T: The bourbon absolutely dominates this brew. I am having trouble distinguishing the tripel from the barrel. Waves of vanilla, burnt wood, and caramel lead the way.

M: A lush, velvet texture pushes the medium body to it's limits.

O: Unbalanced as it is I still can't help but love it. Bourbon barrels...

Photo of koopa
3.98/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12oz bottle received as an extra in a trade with a generous BA thanks!

Appearance: Pours a bit on the cloudy butterscotch side. The crown is white, minimal in size, shows moderate retention and lace.

Smell: Bourbon, oak, a hint of alcohol, coconut, and a hint of sweet malt.

Taste: Same as the nose. The coconut bourbon thing is quite enjoyable but the dash of heat and whisper of rubbing alcohol isn't.

Mouthfeel: Fairly standard for the style.

Overall: Glad I got to try this one actually but I wouldn't seek it out.

Photo of abecall98
3.48/5  rDev -12.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 2

A nice extra from Bucketboy, Thanks!

A - pours a cloudy copper color. Very thin head, grabs onto sides of the glass. Looks very thick.

S - oh boy, is that Bourbon, yes it is. Lovely. A hint of sweet fruity esters finishes the nose. I like this.

T - bourbon is the strong, very dominate in the taste. A few more sips show the yeast in action, that classic Tripel banana clove is present. Alcohol is very very present, and that's not too cool however.

M - not like your average Tripel. The beer is lightly carbonated, but that's expected from bourbon barrel beers. Still, more carb would amplify this beer a point or 2.

D - the beer is pleasing, inviting, and tasty, but that Alcohol, ohan that alcohol in the finish... Please go away. It's only a 9% abv. Beer, go away.

O - this was a pleasant extra. I have been very very underwhelmed from beers lately, and although this beer is not perfect, it is still an enjoyable brew.

Photo of Shaggy9356
3.35/5  rDev -16%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 2.5

Extra from wchollif...thanks! Grabbed 12oz. bottle of tripel from the fridge never reading the bottle and seeing that it was bourbon barrel aged.

Appearance: Hazy orangish, not super appealing to look at, minor lacing along glass. Whispy foam, light carbonation.

Smell: Bourbon, mead, vanilla, esters

taste: holy crap, who poured some tripel in my bourbon? Crazy bourbon flavor dominates, lots of vanilla, more mead. Real hard time picking up the base flavor of the beer. A little heat on the swallow and some isopropyl taste.

Drinkability - not expecting this one bit. I love bourbon but this may even overdo it for me. Not a huge fan of the finish. I like that they tried this but maybe again a % of it in the bourbon barrels and blending it would make for an easier beer to drink. Surprised to see this in a 12 oz. bottle.

This may take me the rest of the night to finish and its only 4 pm.

Photo of ArrogantB
1.45/5  rDev -63.7%
look: 4 | smell: 1 | taste: 1 | feel: 4 | overall: 1

I got this in a trade a while back and as afraid to open it. My fear was justified. This was the worst beer I've ever had. It smelled and tasted like cheap booze and nothing else. Not only was his a drainpour but I couldn't even swallow the first sips, I spit them out. If you like cheap booze this might be just the beer for you.

Photo of dmamiano
3.05/5  rDev -23.6%
look: 2 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Atually kind of an ugly, extremely hazy yellow color. Decent head and lacing.
I can almost sum up the rest of this review with the single word "bourbon"
Bourbon totally dominates this beer in both the taste and the nose
Trace of malts, yeast can be detected, but the bourbon takes the cake.
Taste was almost totaly bourbon.
Think they over did it with this one a bit.

Photo of Jason
4.2/5  rDev +5.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12oz brown bottle with a freshness date.

Booze meets Tripel ... nice. Crackling lace holds to a thin ring around the glass. Cloudy orange golden color. Clean bourbon of vanilla and wood and booze in the nose with suggestions of raw honey, peaches and more solvent. Small but moving smoothness within the creamy medium body. From the creaminess comes the booze, a lot of flavor but the solvent character is held to a minimum due the maltiness adding more depth. Fruity boozy sweet and spicy finish.

it might be slightly hot but nothing over the top, a sipper for sure ... you can't rush this beer but I certainly had a great time drinking it.

Photo of cosmicevan
4.1/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

a-Poured into my La Fin Du Monde tulip glass a deep foggy honey yellow. TONS of yeast chunks in this bottle all floating around in the brew (a bit off putting but such is a tripel) had a 2 finger head with lacing that hung around.

s-The nose leads with a bourbon sweetness with a nice woody vibe (reminds me a lot of Backwoods Bastard). The usual tripel smells are there too, but bourbon sweetness really tells the story.

t-There is a lot going on in there. The bourbon flavor is tamed somewhat by the tripel flavors and they collide to create something pretty unique, but again bourbon sweetness seems to dominate all.

m/d-Medium bodied, chunky with yeast, and overall very in your face. Enjoyable though. Kind of like a rougher version of Backwoods Bastard. Alc is also pretty present, but a delicious tripel aged in bourbon barrels.

Photo of Thorpe429
3.55/5  rDev -11%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Bottle courtesy of bmanning at a tasting this evening. Served in a tulip.

Pours a hazy golden color with a thin white head that quickly recedes and leaves behind some very spotty lacing. There is a thin half collar on the top of part of the beer. The nose is completely lacking in what I would describe as typical tripel characteristics. The bourbon has completely taken over, though it's somewhat nice. The taste adds in some slight sweetness, though bourbon is still the predominant note. There is some slight grain there as well. Medium body with a bit of alcohol. Decent enough, though I think the bourbon has really taken over without leaving much, if any, of the base beer behind.

Photo of ChainGangGuy
4.33/5  rDev +8.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Bottled on: 04/10.

Appearance: Pours a well clouded, dark orange-yellow body with a sudsy, white head.

Smell: Sweet-scented mingling of lightly bready malts, shaved coconut, lemon, bourbon-drenched barrels, orchard fruits, vanilla sugar, florals, and a hint of ground pepper and cloves.

Taste: Lightly sweet, lightly honeyish in the fore, then, a taste of soft French bread. The honeyed qualities join with some floral aspects to present a bit of honeysuckle as some pear and citrus fruitiness joins in. Gentle vanilla, coconut, and bourbon with a potent tannic oak wood character midway. Light yeasty spiciness. Warming alcohol presence and a little, last sip of bourbon on the drying, creamyish finish.

Mouthfeel: Medium-plus body. Medium carbonation.

Drinkability: An interesting, tasty treat. It's not every day you come across a barrel-aged tripel, sadly. Nice one, Mother Earth.

Tripel Overhead (Bourbon Barrel-aged) from Mother Earth Brewing
89 out of 100 based on 120 ratings.