St. Bernardus Prior 8 - Brouwerij St. Bernardus NV
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Ratings: 1,826 | Reviews: 966 | Display Reviews Only:
4.35/5 rDev +4.6%
A - Poured out a dark brown color with a foamy, tan, three-finger head. It left huge rings of lace on the snifter.
S - It smelled of malt and spices. Also, a dried fruit aroma, maybe, apple and pear.
T - It tasted very spicy and had a strong caramel maltiness. A little bittersweet hop kick.
m -It was crisp, sharp and warm with alcohol. A medium to heavy bodied beer.
D - St. Bernardus knows good beer. Nuff said.
07-26-2007 17:11:32 | More by zeff80
4/5 rDev -3.8%
330ml bottle, 1/6th of the St. Bernardus 'all in one' pack available in Alberta.
This beer pours a slightly hazy, over-powdered medium amber iced tea colour, with three thick fingers of puffy, loosely foamy, and fizzy ecru head, which leaves a few swaths of splotchy lace around the glass in its long, drawn-out wake.
It smells of slightly sweet, biscuity pale and caramel malt, orchard stone fruit, spicy yeast, rum-infused dark chocolate, gritty Pop Rocks, and tame earthy, leafy hops. The taste is much more sweet bready caramel malt, somewhat tart orchard fruit (plum and overripe apples and apricots, maybe?), a subtle clove and black pepper spiciness, lesser nutty chocolate notes, and a subtle drying, earthy, and floral hoppiness, one well perfumed from the lurking alcohol.
The carbonation is quite prevalent, but in a softly rendered, frizzante sort of way, the body a sturdy medium weight, and adequately smooth, a minor airy creaminess building as things warm. It finishes with an agreeable off-dry stab from the soused bready maltiness, the fruity and spicy yeastiness playing quietly in the background.
Most definitely a classic dubbel, in that it is less about the sweetness, and more about the balancing yeast, fruit, spice, and alcohol, all of which do their personal best to keep from becoming overbearing. Monks, they be monks, whatever their particular unimportant denomination, and they brew some pretty damned (sorry, pater!) good stuff, as evidenced here.
11-26-2010 06:04:38 | More by biboergosum
4.53/5 rDev +8.9%
Carefully decanted from a long-standing bottle, the prior delivers a crystal-clear chestnut body with a reddish cast and amber and copper highlights. Its huge, pillowy off-white head holds incredibly well and leaves solid sheets of thin, creamy lace about the glass. And there's an added attraction in that you can see the thin rings left from each sip within the solid wall. Candy sugar sweetness, sweet wine, caramel, almond, and vanilla reside in the nose; and appear again in the flavor, balanced by some dark fruitiness (black cherry, plum, fig), alcoholic spice, and leafy hops. It's bitterness is restrained against it's sugary malt, but slowly fights its way through to dominate in the finish (although some splashes of sticky malt do linger). This is a rich, sweet, satisfying, and complex ale that never becomes cloying despite its breadth; and has a great drinkability despite its strength. Impressive!
02-03-2005 00:42:01 | More by NeroFiddled
4.8/5 rDev +15.4%
Pours a murky red brown. Nose is like an over ripe peach that if you waited to eat it until tomorrow, it would be rotten. Hint of molasses. Flavor is perfectly balanced. A touch of cherry on the tongue. Slight alcohol presence noticeable. Strong sweetness like a brown sugar. Feel is very bubbly and very smooth. Excellent drinkability. So perfectly balanced.
This was the middle beer on a night of tasting that started with Damnation by RR and ended with the St. Bernardus Abt 12. This beer was my favorite, and the person I drank with felt the same way.
I wish I could buy this in New Mexico. If I could, itd probably be a regular.
12-30-2007 11:56:20 | More by RblWthACoz
4/5 rDev -3.8%
Poured from a 750ml bottle into an imperial pint glass. The bottle reads “can be aged for up to 10 years”. I know this bottle has at least a year on it, possibly two, but nowehere close to 10.
A: The beer is a deep brown color, with a very large off-white head that fades very slowly and leaves a thick lace on the glass.
S: The aroma contains Belgian yeast, caramelized malts, apples, spices, brown sugar and a touch of hops.
T: The taste starts with sweet flavors of caramel, brown sugar, apples and some spice. Then a strong breadiness comes in from a Belgian yeast and a hearty malt character. The hops presence is mild but complementary and creates a good balance. The after-taste is slightly sweet.
M: Crisp and smooth, medium body, medium carbonation, finish is slightly sticky.
O: Tasty, goes down very easily, not too filling, good kick, very good representation of style, this is a solid Belgian-style beer worth drinking for a while but it’s not quite as outstanding as some other beers from St. Bernardus.
06-10-2011 02:38:21 | More by TheManiacalOne
4.33/5 rDev +4.1%
A - A slow gush of foam begins as the cap pops off. The beer pours with big, three finger head of light brown foam that rests on top of a dark brown body with just a hint of amber showing through. The foam settles pretty quickly, but leaves thick lace behind.
S - A thick aroma of dark fruit and burnt sugars. Notes of plum, raisin, caramel, and brown sugar. Some clove and allspice notes as well.
T - Fruity caramel up front with some phenolic clove character. Darker malt notes appear in the middle, lots of brown sugar, molasses, and a hint of chocolate. Finishes with complex fruit notes of plum and raisin complimented by dark caramel, spicy clove, and warming alcohol. Lingering flavors of plum and dark chocolate coat the palate in the aftertaste with rummy molasses and alcohol.
M - Medium body, moderate carbonation, and a reasonably dry, boozy finish.
D - This is a very dark, yeasty dubbel that borders on becoming a quadruple. There is a chocolatey, roasted grain note that weaves through the flavor and influences the other flavors significantly without quite being strong enough to push the beer out of style. It becomes most prevalent in the finish, where it combines with the yeast notes of clove and allspice as well as the caramel malts to produce a complex, almost woody, rum character that lingers on the palate. A very nice beer that is well worth seeking out.
04-06-2010 06:02:13 | More by nickfl
4/5 rDev -3.8%
33cl brown bottle with a “drink before end of 2004” on the side of the label. Sediment is a bit restless so with ¼ of the bottle left I stopped pouring.
Appearance: Good foaming action from a very active carbonation at the start. The lace stays as long as the beer is there with some clinging activity.
Smell: Creamy aroma of a cream soda, very faint buttery diacetyl, solvent alcohol and some dark fruit to mix things up.
Taste: Big and flexing malt presence, a real mellow twang and bready grain ride upfront. Carob and chicory come from the dark malts, residual dextrin trickle down the taste buds with a nutty almond like flavour. Light on the hops but a rounded phenolic flavour helps to balance. Slightly sweet finish with a growth of alcohol warmth in the end.
Mouthfeel: Plush smoothness rolls around in the mouth and the perfect level of carbonation rushes through.
Drinkability & Notes: A tasty little brown brew that has more punch than it shows. Well worth the try and if you like sweet dark brews this is a must.
Thanks to D & V International for the sample. http://www.specialtybeer.com
01-21-2003 20:02:40 | More by Jason
4.1/5 rDev -1.4%
Appearance: Murky brown with a soft bubbly tan head leaves behind very nicely patterned lacing. Aroma: Raisins and green apple fruit esters fill my senses with toasted malts adding a bit of sweetness to the mix with an herbal air about it not bad. Taste: Not an overly sweet dubbel a bit dry in the finish but the underlying fruit tones are more than satisfactory, with rich complex layers of bready yeast, chocolate, apples and raisins. This is an awesome dubbel, mouthfeel well carbonated medium bodied belgian ale. Drinkabiliy: A very complex sorta hard to seek out brew that should be enjoyed in small quantities for the pure quality of this product.
01-16-2004 09:34:33 | More by WVbeergeek
4.43/5 rDev +6.5%
Pours an effervescent ruby red/brown with 2+ fingers of tan head. Very good lacing & super head retention
S: Fruittyness (cherry, raspberry, appleskins, figs & plums)& vanilla once warm.
T: Fruittyness (plum & cherry), chocolate, oaky dryness up front. Vanilla, a bit of earthy & leafy hops, chocolate, raisins, & jammy fruits, plus some boozey warmth as this warms. Finishes with figs, dryness & a bit of raspberry & cherry. Almost gave this a 5 for taste, that close!
MF: A little watery with a bit too much carbonation up front. Dryness & malt assert themselves once pretty warm with just a bit of booze warmth at the end
Drinks too easy, I'd guess this at a bout 6.5 abv if I didn't know. Easily one of my favorite dubbels, now that I've tasted it!
02-08-2008 04:19:33 | More by russpowell
4.5/5 rDev +8.2%
750ml bottle, which uncorked with great enthusiasm on untwisting the wire cage, with utterly no assistance, spilling ale everywhere..
Dark mahogany brown color, full, fervent foam, a bit beigey in color, slowly simmering down.
Aroma, spice, nuts, fruit, faint cocoa, more spice, cinnamon, clove, very carbonated, very enticing, uplifting, arousing, even...a lovely snootful, me likey.
Very lively, zesty taste, the mouth swims with this pruney, raisiny, vibrant flavor...I'm liking it more as it nestles in the crevices of my tastebuds.
Bursts afresh on the tongue again and again. Full-bodied, long, warm, lovely finish.
Goodness aplenty in this bottle. A keeper if ever there was.
06-14-2004 04:31:35 | More by feloniousmonk
4.15/5 rDev -0.2%
Beer is served in a St. B goblet. Beer is brown and hazy. Forms a thin brown head of small bubbles that leaves a lot of lacing on the glass. Carbonation is moderate.
Aroma is estery and bready. Nice, mildly sweet. Overall nice.
Beer has a creamy body, fine bubbles round out the sweetness and the minor ester character. Beer is slightly bready and nice. Medium overall, high drinkability, a great obtainable dubbel.
07-28-2010 04:14:58 | More by drabmuh
4/5 rDev -3.8%
The beer pours a deep dark brown color with a thick frothy offwhite head that slowly fades to lacing. The aroma is good. It has a dry, yet rich malty scent that boasts of pale and crystal malts along with a fruity Belgian yeast aroma. The taste is good. It has a smooth and creamy flavor that boasts of roasted and Belgian crystal malts. It goes down easy and finishes dry and fruity with a warming aftertaste. The mouthfeel is fine. It is a medium/full bodied beer with good carbonation. This is an excellent Abbey ale. It has great flavor and aroma; a fine sessions beer.
02-07-2005 21:55:18 | More by WesWes
4/5 rDev -3.8%
First had: on tap at the Farmhouse, Emmaus, PA
I don't think I can count how many times I've seen this beer around, but I never got around to trying it, always opting for it's bigger brother 12, if I'm in the mood for a St. Bernardus. Clear, chestnut brown color with a frothy off-white head that retained and laced well. Aroma of sweet malts and sugars, with notes of dried fruits. Taste was pretty much what I'd expect from a dubbel: candi sugar and caramel, lightly toasted bread, tones of dried plums and raisins, and a touch of vanilla. A bit of noticeable booze. Medium mouthfeel, and pleasantly drinkable.
11-20-2011 15:14:55 | More by Rifugium
4/5 rDev -3.8%
The beer is medium brown colored with a tannish head. The beer is hazy and you cannot see through it. The aroma is caramel and toffee with some molasses mixed in. I also get a little bit of dark fruit. The flavor is full of caramel, Belgian yeast, candy sugar and a little bit of grape/other dark fruit. The alcohol is barely noticeable and the beer is very easy to drink. Medium mouthfeel and medium carbonation.
06-06-2011 02:22:00 | More by Mora2000
3.68/5 rDev -11.5%
Poured from an 11.2 oz. bottle into a goblet.
a - Pours a mahogany, nut brown color with a little over one finger of white head and moderate carbonation.
s - Smells of bready malts, yeast, and maybe some raisins and plums, or other darker fruits.
t - Tastes of bready malts, yeast, some spice.
m - Medium body and hight carbonation.
d - A pretty solid dubbel. I thought it smelled a little better than it tasted, but good and worth a try none the less. Not as good as Abt 12, but something I would try again.
03-31-2010 00:10:51 | More by mdfb79
4.3/5 rDev +3.4%
Pours light brown with a thin lasting head. Minimal lacing slides down the glass.
The smell is of brown candy sugar with medium-to-dark-malt fruit. Spicy - coriander - bready undertones. Nice!
The taste follows through nicely - Robust candy sweetness balanced by coriander/cinnamon/pepper with grassy undertones. Alcohol well-covered. Finishes with a sweet spiciness.
Smooth in a medium body.
This is nice! Complex and well-balanced. Let this warm up for characteristics to shine through! A true Belgian dubbel.
Thanks to my neighbor across the way for sharing this Belgian delight!
08-29-2007 02:51:56 | More by jwc215
4.1/5 rDev -1.4%
A nice garnet color when held up to the light, otherwise this is an amber beer topped by a tan head. A spicy musty aroma wafts from my goblet. There are undertones of fruit in the aroma as well. Definitely spicy tasting as well, finishes a bit hot. This beer definitely features what Belgian yeast can do. Lots of yeast character here. There is a subtle malty sweetness that helps to carry the complex yeast flavors and aromas. The spice notes from the yeast that I can differentiate are; ginger, pepper, bergamot, and cardamom. This beer is medium bodied, though, as many Belgian beers are, it is quite light for its alcohol content. This beer is very similar to the 6, just a little bit richer.
12-14-2003 19:52:24 | More by Gueuzedude
3.88/5 rDev -6.7%
Huge head that recedes in a rocky fashion. Decent lace on the glass. The color is light brown without much haze even though there is some yeast at the bottom of the bottle.
When compared to '6', this is a milder smell--not nearly as sweet. No strong yeast smell as typical with most Belgians.
Sweet and thick with a definite level of alcohol warmth. Decent body, but not as thick as some Belgians. Nice light hop in the swallow. Very smooth and easy to drink.
01-10-2009 19:57:30 | More by smcolw
3.93/5 rDev -5.5%
11.2 oz. bottle, best before 4/24/2013, into a snifter,
A: Pours a murky brown with a light tan head that gushes a bit, the carbonation was foaming at the top of the bottle before I even had a chance to pour it, good head retention, the head is quite fizzy.
S: Distinct smell of prunes, dried dark fruit and black currants.
T: Taste is good, the flavours are not overpowering, they manage to be subtle and complex at the same time. Dark pumpkernickel bread with notes of rye are intertwined with dark fruit character - raisins for sure and prune. Hit of molasses at the end as well as a hint of winter spice. Sweet notes of cake batter in the aftertaste. All around good flavour, it is imperative to drink this at at least 50-55F.
M: Carbonation is very high, though it didn't explode in my mouth like other relatively young bottle conditioned beers can do. Give it a few good swirls before tasting, as you pick up some more notes from the nose, the mouthfeel will be much more drinkable. The overall lightness on the tongue completely hides the 8%.
D: This is a good abbey beer. It's not the most striking Dubbel in flavour I've ever had, but it is distinctly Belgian and it would make a great starting point for those just beginning to get into Belgium's wonderful and diverse brews. It's got something in there for everyone I think. One of the most drinkable high gravity brews I've ever had. Recommended.
11-16-2008 23:32:32 | More by Halcyondays
United Kingdom (England)
3.93/5 rDev -5.5%
The second beer in my St Bernardus evening, a brown 330ml bottle best before 5th Apr 2012, drank on 1st March 2008.
Poured into my Westmalle bowl glass it looks a lovely ruby red, deep and clean appearance. The beige head stayed for the whole experience, which I always like to see.
Plum pudding and christmas cake mix come to mind in the aroma, but it isn't strong and takes some finding. Burnt malts also in there somewhere.
The taste knocks spots off the 6.7% Pater 6 which is what I had prior to this (see how I did that?). This beer tastes like its aroma, plums, dried fruits (like found in a Christmas cake), malty, toasty and roasted.
Feels good, nicely balanced beer, the flavours stay and the beer is obviously well crafted.
As I stated earlier, I like a beer who's head stays throughout the drink, this beer has that trait. It is also a dam good tasting beer.
03-01-2008 21:30:35 | More by BlackHaddock
St. Bernardus Prior 8 from Brouwerij St. Bernardus NV
93 out of 100 based on 1,826 ratings.