1. The wait is over! Download the BeerAdvocate app on iTunes or Google Play now.
  2. Get 12 issues / year of BeerAdvocate magazine for only $9.99!

St. Bernardus Prior 8 - Brouwerij St. Bernardus NV

Not Rated.
St. Bernardus Prior 8St. Bernardus Prior 8

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.

1,782 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 1,782
Reviews: 965
rAvg: 4.16
pDev: 8.89%
Wants: 90
Gots: 111 | FT: 5
Brewed by:
Brouwerij St. Bernardus NV visit their website

Style | ABV
Dubbel |  8.00% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: kbub6f on 09-27-2002)
View: Beers (12) |  Events
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Latest | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of St. Bernardus Prior 8 Alström Bros
Ratings: 1,782 | Reviews: 965 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of ToasterChef


4.35/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Served in my Uprising Chalice. Appears very dark with a head full of tiny bubbles. The bubbles leave a fine lace all around the glass while I'm drinking. The taste is malty at first with hints toffee at the end. There is a hint of alcohol to the flavor, but not nearly as strong as you would think an 8% ABV beer would taste. There is a bit of noticeable carbonation in the mouthfeel, but it isn't distracting in the least. Overall, a very fine beer. I enjoy a darker Belgian style to a lighter, so I think I actually prefer thins to the St. Bernie 12. As long as I'm not driving, I could have a number of these.

Serving type: on-tap

05-16-2009 22:10:58 | More by ToasterChef
Photo of barleywinefiend


4.43/5  rDev +6.5%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

WOW! Poured a cloudy dark brown with a huge tannish head, plenty of carbonation on this brew. Nose is sugar, candied fruits, caramel, dried dark fruits, roastiness and all of this is in the taste too. This was an exceptional Dubbel. Very smooth and rich, easy drinking and probably one of the best Dubbels I have had, ever.

Serving type: bottle

05-16-2009 20:03:26 | More by barleywinefiend
Photo of DavoleBomb


3.98/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

11.2 oz bottle poured into a goblet.

3.5 A: Murky dark brown color. Two fingers of frothy off-white head with below average lacing and modest lacing. Some yeast clumps at the bottom.

4.0 S: Earthy and yeasty. Some dark fruits including plum and raisin. Good overall, just wish it was more intense.

4.0 T: It's good, but run-of-the-mill in its flavor and depth. Lots of raisin and plum flavor and a touch of tobacco. Caramel malts and brown sugar. Touch of yeastiness to boot.

4.0 M: Medium body. Good bubbly carbonation. Creamy.

4.0 D: Pretty good, not spectacular.

Serving type: bottle

05-14-2009 20:10:08 | More by DavoleBomb
Photo of drcarver


3.7/5  rDev -11.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

A - A muddy brown color and clarity with an off white head. The head is small and slightly lacy

S - The malt aromas are strong with some nut and fruit

T - Very malt and sweet. A strong alcohol flavor. There is hints of nuts (almond?) and fruit with a bit of sweat.

M - Thick and dry

D - It's a sipper.

Serving type: bottle

05-10-2009 01:05:57 | More by drcarver
Photo of dborginis


3.8/5  rDev -8.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On tap at Oakmont pub, poured into a St. Bernardus chalice. Millimeter or so of head, black but purple-ish color (bar was dark). Smell is of wine and raisins. The taste is of raisin as spices as well as alcohol. Very thick beer. Definitely a sipper. Not what I would have thought as a dubbel.

Serving type: on-tap

05-04-2009 01:46:15 | More by dborginis
Photo of theopholis


3.35/5  rDev -19.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Appearance - Deep, darkamber body with a strong ruby glow. The head is 1-finger high, tan and fades quickly.

Smell - Fairly complex melange of dark fruits (prunes, over-ripe cherries), maybe some currant.

Taste - Again, lots of dark fruits with lots of yeastiness. Quite nixe.

Mouthfeel - Coats the mouth with its full goodness, leaving a nice, lingering aftertaste.

Drinkability- Not great, but worth a whirl.

Serving type: bottle

05-01-2009 04:56:40 | More by theopholis
Photo of ofosho

New Hampshire

4.38/5  rDev +5.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Served in a snifter after a long, hard day of... sitting. For an art class. Paired with a dash of Robert Jones blues.

A - Deep, dark cherry body with a ruby glow and edged with orange highlights. Pinkie-width tan head fades quickly.

S - Sour cherries, prunes, coffee (imagine drinking strong coffee, then breathing up into your own nose - that's the smell. Weird, I know, but it's not a direct coffee smell, it's more of a tangy coffee), and a touch of sweet caramel greet the nose in a soft but pleasant blend of aromas.

T - Scrumptious, juicy hit of dried, dark fruits and whole wheat bread with a definite sweetness hit the palate with a bang. Then comes a wave of lighter, more delicate sweet notes of caramel, cedar shavings, and tangy, almost citrusy yeast.

M, D - Coats the mouth with its full goodness, but clears out well and leaves the palate with a brightness that invites the next sip.

Serving type: bottle

04-30-2009 22:05:40 | More by ofosho
Photo of tedpeer


4.2/5  rDev +1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

12 ounce bottle poured into a chalice.

A - Pours brown, with reddish hints. Huge light tan head that quickly subsided to a ring around. Some lacing.

S - Fruity, spice and malts.

T - Fruity and slightly sweet. Slight warmth from alcohol in finish.

M - Highly carbonated. Creamy. Smooth.

D - Very drinkable.

Serving type: bottle

04-29-2009 00:35:44 | More by tedpeer
Photo of dogfishandi

New York

4.2/5  rDev +1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

poured from 11.2oz bottle into oversized wine glass at cellar temp. pours a deep dark brown color, almost appear black. lots of floater. delicious looking off white almost tan head with some brown in the middle from the last couple drops. huge head with amazing retention and lots of sticky lacing. looks very good.

the smell is that of sweet malts, spice, clove , belgian yeast, grapes, plums, raisons, solvent like alcohol. lovely.

sweet malts, sweet fruits, grapes, plums, dark fruits cover your whole mouth. clove, phenolic, belgian yeast. finishs with a grape like sweet/sourness with some warmth from the alcohol. hugely complex beer.

amazing heavy mouthfeel that really takes over your palate. very fine carbonation.

would not want to drink more than one in a night, but will definately enjoy again. one of my favorite dubbels. best served at cellar temp, and take your time and allow it to open up and let all sorts of new flavors come out.

Serving type: bottle

04-26-2009 02:50:29 | More by dogfishandi
Photo of alcstradamus


3.95/5  rDev -5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A--Very dark brown with a huge 3 finger head that receded lightning quick and left no lacing

S--Banana, dark fruit, flowers, caramel

T--Muted banana/clove taste, sweet fruits, figs, rye bread

M--Too carbonated for my liking, but that is the style so I can't knock it too much

D--Except for the carbonation sting, this is a very easy drinking beer. I will definitely go back to this one in the future with a more thorough review

Serving type: bottle

04-23-2009 06:00:06 | More by alcstradamus
Photo of clayrock81


4.28/5  rDev +2.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pours a cloudy dark brown body w/ two-finger head. A husky, thick bitter malt smell with a mix of grainy roasted/toasted malts with coffee and some sweet malts like caramel. A sweet, creamy, sugary malt taste as I pick up caramel, nuts, oat as well as some chocolate. There are some dark fruit/fig tastes for balance and it finishes slightly dry thanks to some roasted malts, but overall this a medium to heavy bodied beer that is sweet. I must add that I noticed some fruit notes on the backend with the dry malt feeling - could be some hop bitterness, although it had a slight grape tinge. This is a great dubbel from St. Bernardus.

Serving type: bottle

04-20-2009 17:20:18 | More by clayrock81
Photo of Foxtrot


4.53/5  rDev +8.9%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours a very nice dark brown, cloudy body with a nice ivory foam cap. The head retention on this beer is absolutely amazing, it just keeps going and going and going and going!

Wonderful aromas of Belgian yeast, light plum with hints of spices and touches of cinnamon and sweetness.

Smelling this beer was delightful, but tasting it was a treat! Love the complexity. Moves with a nice fresh and vibrant tone, balanced with some assorted dark fruits, and a nice crisp clean finish. I enjoyed how this beer was sweet, but without being too sweet. The sweet sugary notes are very controlled and don't overpower the other flavors.

Mouthfeel was a nice full medium body.

Drinkability was superb, at no point did I not find myself not enjoying this beer. It was really hard to put my glass down between the tasting and smelling. Brilliant!

Serving type: bottle

04-16-2009 05:58:58 | More by Foxtrot
Photo of KickInTheChalice


3.93/5  rDev -5.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from an 11.2 oz bottle into a goblet.

Appearance: Pours a thick, walnut brown color that is impossible to see through. I observed small sentiment floating around the edges before disappearing into the brown abyss, with some residue from the last drops resting on top of the lace hat looks like cinnamon. The head foams up nicely to about 4 cm. Eventually it fades, but some head and loose lacing remain around the beer for the duration of the glass.

Smell: A developed but nuanced smell, the major players are a strong Belgian yeasty malt and some fall spices. Cinnamon, cloves, and nutmeg are all noticeable. Dates and raisins round out the aroma.

Taste: Nothing too surprising here, although the dark fruit takes more of the lead. A strong, pleasant, yeasty malt dominates up front. Only a hint of the spices I smelled find their way into the taste. A light, somewhat tart hop flavor comes in at the end of the sip, but it's not quite citrusy. I think it is a light starfruit taste.

Mouthfeel: A medium bodied, smooth feel. A nice level of carbonation, and there is a level of sediment that is nice.

Drinkability: A little different from the norms of the style, and this is a very drinkable beer. The strong, dark flavor and high alcohol content make it a nice sipper.

Serving type: bottle

04-15-2009 04:21:32 | More by KickInTheChalice
Photo of chiguy2420


4.1/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Review #5... Poured into St Bernardus Goblet.

A: Pours a dark brown with a good amount of head, 1 to 2 fingers. Minimal lacing. Very Yeasty looking.

S: I find I am usually harder on the smell and this is no different. Didn't really stand out as the ABT 12 although I know its a different beer. I got alot of spice but not much fruit like the other St. Berns. Seemed very earthy in the nose.

T: Good spicy taste. Seems more complex then the triple. Dried fruits really stand out and a coffee taste too.

M: Good carbonation and a good complexity help this beer get stronger as it goes on.

D: I actually blew threw this one pretty quick. I can see this as great beer after dinner. I drank it before dinner and it filled me up.

I found a preference to this over the triple and would drink this one again.

Serving type: bottle

04-12-2009 21:27:22 | More by chiguy2420
Photo of Jeffo


4.45/5  rDev +7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Picked this up at the bottle shop down the road.

From a bottle into a St. Bernardus chalice.

APPEARANCE: Pours a medium-thick looking 1 finger off-white head that fades to a film cap relatively quickly. Some carbonation evident, but on the lower end of the spectrum. Colour is dark brown, perhaps a raw umber or auburn, with a good amount of yeast sediment floating around. A thin cap stays to the end but leaves little in the way or lacing down the glass.

SMELL: A yeasty nose with dark fruits as well, such as raisins and dates. A slight roasted quality as well, which was unexpected though well received. Hints of roasted malt and chocolate in the background. Enticing and unique in the dubbel category.

TASTE: Yeast qualities again, with lots of caramel malt and toffee up front. Some dark fruits there as well, raisins and dates like the nose. Some nice roasted flavours and a touch of bitter chocolate as well. Aftertaste is strong and long lasting, including sweet caramel malt and some bitter hop and chocolate to balance it out, with a touch of spicy alcohol at the end. Very enjoyable.

PALATE: Medium-thick body with lower end carbonation. Velvety smooth on the palate, goes down smooth, not bite, and finishes slightly dry on the palate. Alcohol very well hidden for the ABV.

OVERALL: A very enjoyable and super drinkable brew. The beer fled my glass quicker than I'd expected from an 8% beer. Doesn't quite fit the dubbel style very nicely, what with the roasted and smoky qualities, but never-the-less, this is one excellent brew I will be grabbing again the near future. I'd say this is my favorite in the St. Bernardus line; even out does the Abt. 12 for me. Recommended for sure.

Serving type: bottle

04-06-2009 16:32:32 | More by Jeffo
Photo of grayburn

South Carolina

4.22/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3

This beer is exciting to watch, the sediment and the yeast fly around, the head sits huge and furious on top, the light shining through comes out a burnt amber to the eye. The head stays all the way through, it is one of those beers that should be served with a spoon to scoop out the foam at the end.
The smell is yeast. Active fermentation, estery high temperature florals and fruits. Very impressive. The malt takes a seat behind the yeast, I love Belgians.
The taste is again a phenolic cocktail of yeastiness. This beer tastes like a belgian doppelbock, no hoppage to be found, but certainly no lack of balance.
The mouth is nice, a bittersweet symphony of sorts.
I factored the drinkability so low just because this beer is to be sipped, the flavors need be appreciated.

Serving type: bottle

03-30-2009 03:01:41 | More by grayburn
Photo of prototypic


4.13/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Appearance: Prior 8 pours a deep brown color with a distinct garnet hue to it. There's loads of sediment swimming about. Active carbonation pushing the yeast around creates quite the motion picture. A caramel colored head that stands two fingers deep sits atop. Retention is excellent. It's sure to outlast the beer lying underneath. Thick sheets of lace line the glass.

Smell: The most striking thing about the nose is the wealth of Belgian yeast. It permeates throughout and smells very good. There's a broad range of spices that features cinnamon, clove, pepper, and surely a few others. There's a light chocolate/cocoa aroma that smells sweet. Dark fruit scents of plum, raisin, and fig are noted. It's a nice smelling beer. The yeast, while it smells very nice, is almost a little too overpowering though.

Taste: It's spicy and sweet up front. Light clove, cinnamon, and pepper spices are noted. There's certainly a few other ancillary varieties that I can't identify. It is sweet and a tad sugary. Light chocolate provides more sweeetness and depth. Dark fruit flavors of plum, fig, and raisin are noted, but play more of a complementary role. Belgian yeast is obviously present, but is not as strong here. It really adds a nice touch to the flavor. Have I ever mentioned that I love Belgian yeast? Alcohol is blended well and goes unnoticed. Finishes sweet, a little spicy, and yeasty.

Mouthfeel/Drinkability: It features a medium body and is smooth. Carbonation is active and hinders it here a little. But, it is good. Drinkability is very good. I believe it'd be difficult for Brouwerij St. Bernardus to craft a beer that wasn't insanely drinkable. It goes down way too easy.

Prior 8 is a very nice Dubbel. It's every bit as good as Pater 6, though neither materially distinguishes itself from the other. Yes, this one is a little stronger and has a more substantial yeasty flavor. But, I like them equally. They also suffer from the same fault. They don't have that special something that drives them to the next level. I honestly believe it's a stronger spicy flavor. That's just my take. Nonetheless, this is a very good Dubbel that's easily recommended.

Serving type: bottle

03-24-2009 01:59:36 | More by prototypic
Photo of BeTheBall


4.45/5  rDev +7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a bottle in to my St. Bernardus goblet. Poured a reddish brown with a lively huge head. In fact upon opening the bottle, foam began to seep over the top. Smell was of caramel and toffee along with roasted malts and dark fruit. Taste was amazing, subtle fruits along with toffee and caramel, similar (but even better) than the smell. This is very delicious and makes me want to come back for another sip soon. Mouthfeel was good, nice and foamy. Drinkability was high due to the incredible taste and smell. A true gem.

Serving type: bottle

03-23-2009 16:30:00 | More by BeTheBall
Photo of Traquairlover


4.4/5  rDev +5.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

33cl bottle poured into a tulip.

A = An almost milk chocolate brown, maple syrup brown liquid with slight sediment specs from the pour, large frothy bone white head with excellent retention, heavy lacing.

S = Creamy milk chocolate, bananas, guavas, white pepper, cotton candy, this has a really complicated aroma with fruity scents, strong malts. Very good.

T = Hard candies, chocolate, butterscotch, cumin, pepper, as with the smell this is very complex and has a long sweet finish that goes on forever.

M = Heavy body, excellent mouthcoating, slight alcohol sting.

D = Great beer, only issue is the flavors get a little cloying by the end of the glass.

Serving type: bottle

03-11-2009 22:36:43 | More by Traquairlover
Photo of wl0307

United Kingdom (England)

4.05/5  rDev -2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

BB 24/04/13, served lightly-chilled in Westmalle's broad-rimmed chalice.

A: pours a lightly murky, dark russet brown hue, coming with a well-lasting thin layer of dark beige frothy head and pretty moderate carbonation as far as my eyes could manage to detect.
S: lovely mildly-aromatic with a metallic twist, backed by plentiful dark malts with dark chocolatey and toasted nutty hints; the estery aroma reveals itself in a rather smooth manner, giving notes of Chinese red-bean paste (but only just), sweet licorice and black sugar, while alc. is certainly very settled and well-hidden. Not demanding or very complex for an 8%abv. Dark Ale, but the integrity is easily detected on the nose.
T: a sweet tinge of black herbal syrup and sour-sweet dark fruity malts come with a soothing texture of salty-sweet estery Chinese red-bean paste - pretty aromatic and soft on the palate... the weight of the dark malts is such that the hop bitterness and mildly floral estery flavour are literally "delayed" to develop at the back of the palate, where a light herbal undertone of licorice+aniseed+sunflower-seed, black-sugar-flavoured toffee, and a sour-sweet edge of caramelised prunes manage to linger. Slightly chewy and dry-ish bitter in the very end.
M&D: rather refreshing with a decent, moderate body and light fizziness, this big brother of "Pater 6" shows a deeper profile of dark malts yet overall lacks a level of complexity that is supposed to be built upon the junior one's virtuosity. That said, I find this an utterly drinkable sample of Dubbel, for its elegant integrity on the flavour and a total absence of alc. feel.

Serving type: bottle

03-11-2009 20:10:03 | More by wl0307
Photo of CJthirty7


3.95/5  rDev -5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A: Dark Amber in color; light, thin head.
S: Spicy (nutmeg/all spice), sweetish with hints of dark sugar, some butterscotch and chocolate
T: Sweet chocolate/butterscotch taste; strong and slightly bitter finish.
M: Carbonated, light
D: I could have one or two post-meal.

Good beer. Had it as a sampler from St. Bernardus. Got a cool glass to drink it out of!

Serving type: bottle

03-08-2009 04:22:09 | More by CJthirty7
Photo of KraegerB

New York

4.6/5  rDev +10.6%
look: 5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Serving Type - 1 pt. 9.4 fl. oz. Brown bottle with cork.

A - Cloudy red-ish brown with a tan head which lingers and leaves some nice lacing.

S - Earthy aromas mainly smelling of dried fruits.

T - Complex flavor, tastes of caramel, apricots, faint bitterness of hops, faint coffee flavor. nice.

M - Wonderfully smooth. Full body, just the right amount of carbonation.

D - I really enjoyed this beer. I would definitely have it again. Seems to portray the Dubbel style nicely.

Serving type: bottle

03-07-2009 23:37:27 | More by KraegerB
Photo of Oatsoda


4.05/5  rDev -2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Very dark chocolate colored with a light head of foam.

It has aromas of banana and raisin, unusually sweet.

It starts off full-flavored with a bitter, coffee-like aftertaste.

A medium bodied beer with smooth carbonation.

Very enjoyable dark beer. Another great one from St. Bernardus.

Serving type: on-tap

03-06-2009 10:11:24 | More by Oatsoda
Photo of bunnyhustle


4.45/5  rDev +7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Go St. Bernardus! Another great beer. Pours deep mahogany in color with some sediment, big creamy head. Great retention and lacing. Smell is of sweet dark fruit, pear, and white grape. Overall very sweet. Taste is very similar. Some sweet bicuit malt with apple, pear, and other sweet fruit. Some earthiness and grass. Mouthfeel is very light. Almost champagne like on the first sip due to the higher carbonation. Dry, sweet aftertaste. Overall a great beer and easy drinker. The ABV is well hidden and this is a great slow sipper at warmer temps.

Serving type: bottle

03-05-2009 01:16:25 | More by bunnyhustle
Photo of BeefTongue


4.2/5  rDev +1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Creamy one finger head on the pour that left heavy lace upon swirling. The beer appeared a dark red-amber when held to light and was a bit clouded due to the yeast sediment remaining from the bottle conditioning process. The aroma was lightly fruity and sweet- the distinct tart odor of the Belgian yeast came through and offered a complex and appealing twist to the blend of scents present. The carbonation is high, but feels good to the inside of the mouth, tingling all over, and the overall mouthfeel is smooth and substantial, but not so thick as to linger long on the tongue after swallowing. The flavor is nice, true to the name of a dubbel; very good and well balanced. The finish is there but dissipates quickly, although the remaining flavors of clove and malt are very pleasant while they last. Would definitely drink again, but not every day.

Serving type: bottle

03-02-2009 04:52:34 | More by BeefTongue
St. Bernardus Prior 8 from Brouwerij St. Bernardus NV
93 out of 100 based on 1,782 ratings.