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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.

1,757 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 1,757
Reviews: 965
rAvg: 4.16
pDev: 8.89%
Wants: 85
Gots: 109 | FT: 6
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
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Ratings: 1,757 | Reviews: 965 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of Foxman

New Jersey

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

It pours a hazy, fizzy, deep amber, with a central column of chocolate brown. Three fingers of beige packing peanut foam head settle soon to a frothy blanket. The most delicate Belgian lacing graces the inside of the glass.

The aroma brings a tangy and grainy malt presence, lightly sweet with caramel and berry. Breathy yeast yields green apple, banana, melon, and the mild spice of clove. Alcohol is present but flighty.

Upon sipping, there's a syrupy malt sweetness, with caramel and toffee, and partnered with an airy floral hop note and a complimentary clove and coriander pairing. Tart apple and minty esters swirl with a flutter of alcohol. Biscuit malt creeps back in along with a vague earthiness, and the finish crisps moderately to linger some time. It's a classic, quality dubbel presentation.

Medium bodied, the grain coats smoothly and the clean finish is an alluring climax.

It just may be that few other beers so typically fit into the dubbel style with such a strong pedigree. And the pedigree is well earned. While the ABV is healthy, it's also a nicely incorporated warming component, and it drinks so very nicely. So this is on more impressive offering from the pride of Watou province.

Serving type: bottle

12-04-2006 20:31:10 | More by Foxman
Photo of dhchatfield


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

Found on sale today while picking up some trade beers. We cut our tree today. A nice finish to a very cold afternoon. Poured into my Gravoche mini tulip.

A - Very nice dark red with a hint of brown. Very tall fluffy beige tinged head. Beautiful lacing.

S - An earthy raisin scent. Very strong alcohol note, which I found surprising, in that it seemed more pronounced than that of its' stronger cousin, Abt 12.

T - Splendid. Raisins again, with a nice malt backing. Alcohol is present as well. Very complex, with a yeasty finish.

M - Crisp at the start, then spreading across the palate with a light effervescence. Left a nice coating on the tongue and roof of the mouth.

D - Excellent drinkability. Sweet, yeasty and malty. Very palatable. The relatively low ABV will allow me to savor this one all night.

A very nice Abbey Ale.

Serving type: bottle

12-03-2006 22:47:25 | More by dhchatfield
Photo of SetarconeX


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

A nice semi-cloudy red color, with a head on it that's perhaps just a little bit too bubbly than I'd like. Scent is a bit sweet, with a hint of fruit.

Nicely malty taste, with perhaps just a hint of metallic flavor. Pretty good amount of raisin to go with it all, and maybe a bit of grain and chocolate. Remarkably creamy mouthfeel ads an unexpected boost to the brew.

I like this one, I really do. Wonderfully complicated and tasty. A tip 'o the hat to the monks.

Serving type: bottle

11-17-2006 01:18:53 | More by SetarconeX
Photo of mmmbeer


4.22/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

11.2 oz. slender Belgian bottle, served in a small snifter. It pours a hazed deep copper with some yeast floaties and it's topped with an inch of light brown head that laces nicely, but I keep swirling it away. The aroma is quite nice, with dark, rich malts/grains, molasses, banana, cidery apple, raspberry, and hints of strawberry and kiwi. Not quite as fruity on the palate, with rich grains taking their place, contributing molasses and maybe some carob. Yeast, apple, and banana are also in the mix, on top of a medium to thick body that has ample carbonation. Overall a good, tasty dubbel from a brewery I'm only starting to get to know, but would like to know better.

Serving type: bottle

11-09-2006 22:38:27 | More by mmmbeer
Photo of oelergud


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

Very dark almost opaque ruby maple body. Moderate carbonation, tan silken head that holds well and leaves great lace.
Very mild scents of butter and brown sugar. Spice and almost imperceptible hops.
Strong malty and sugary flavors with a brief hop bite. Caramel and mild spice in the middle and an aftertaste of nicely balanced malt and hops though the hops does last just abit longer.
The fuller part of a medium body, creamy and sparse coating.
A sweet and delicious brew to be sipped and slowly enjoyed. Be sure to let it warm as it has a nasty cardboard taste if had too cold.


Serving type: bottle

10-29-2006 20:14:43 | More by oelergud
Photo of ultralarry2006


3.53/5  rDev -15.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured from an 11.2 oz. bottle. Leaves a tan one finger head with good retention and good lacing. Body is a hazy garnet.

Smell - horse blanket, caramel, figs, and raisins. Alcohol is well hidden.

Taste - like the smell. Horse blanket, caramel, figs, and raisins washed down with medinical and alcohol phenolics. Alcohol is mostly well hidden.

Mouthfeel - medium bodied, and dry.

Drinkability - I find this to be good, but not great. I will have this on occaision. High abv also supresses sessionability.

Serving type: bottle

10-29-2006 17:49:18 | More by ultralarry2006
Photo of GooberMcNutly


3.7/5  rDev -11.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

750 bottle. Pours a thick, dark rust color with big large-bubble head that lasted until the last sip. Amazingly complex but subtle aromas of raisins, orange and almonds. Palate was complex with high maltiness but low overall sweetness. Sourness was milder than many abby ales. High yeast content but it stayed in the bottom well and I could pour all but about an ounce. No hint of the alcohol flavor (until I tried to stand up...). Left me wanting another.

Serving type: bottle

10-25-2006 16:03:37 | More by GooberMcNutly
Photo of lordofthewiens


4.03/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Wonderful beer. Served in a goblet, it was a dark brown with a thick, sticky head. It had a caramel, dark fruit, and roasted grain aroma. It tasted as it smelled, nice caramel flavor, a little fruity, some hops. Smooth, good mouthfeel. 8% ABV means I could drink more than one at a time.

Serving type: on-tap

10-18-2006 20:02:11 | More by lordofthewiens
Photo of hckyfn9999


4.1/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours a dark brown with a nice creamy head that lasts for a while and leaves good lacing all the way through.

Smell is of carmel, raisons, apples, and malt. As the beer warms alcohol is present in the smell as well.

Taste is more of the smell with the carmel and fruit but there is also a little bit of hops as well balancing the beer out.

Mouthfeel is good and for 8%, this is very drinkable. A very good brew.

Serving type: bottle

10-17-2006 07:10:41 | More by hckyfn9999
Photo of peabody


3.65/5  rDev -12.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This one pours out a little darker than the 6 but not a lot. Still looks like tea.
Suds are a little more prevelant here but still very little head that is mostly white to tan. No lacing here to speak of.
Smell is a chocolate carmel fruit aroma with just a hint of alcohol.
Taste is a little dirty. I can taste the fruityness and the sweet caramel but I was expecting much more here.
The alcohol is here in the aftertaste and it warms your belly. Little to no carbonation but the alcohol and fruit make it a nice mouthfeel.
Drinkability is marginal here because of the slightly higher ABV.

Serving type: bottle

10-11-2006 02:33:48 | More by peabody
Photo of Padron4KM


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

33cl bottle best before 2010.

Hazy amber with a lasting two finger tan head and thick lacing.

raisin, figs and a little bubble gum on the nose.

Flavor is raisin, plum , brown sugar and yeast.

Creamy mouthfeel, but it becomes a little sticky towards the end of the glass.

Serving type: bottle

10-10-2006 06:05:01 | More by Padron4KM
Photo of uberabr


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

Served from the 11.2 oz botle. I've had trouble getting a real noticible smell out of St. Bernardus' before in traditional Belgian-style chalices, so I used my tulip instead.

A musky red brown with nice off-white head and good retention. Not much lace. Moderate standing carbonation, but it really goes when agitated.

The smell is subtle but pleasant. I really had to agitate it to get it to pop. Smells a spicy citrus and oak with a very aromatic quality. A subtle orange-chocolate aroma with a wheat breadyness. Reminds me of a Fruit 'n Nut Cadbury candy bar.

Tastes great. A defintie candyness; the orange and chocolate are still here, along with caramel and toffee. Malty with a slight hop to it but very well rounded. Not very much alcohol taste at all, pleasant and drinkable. Good body. A solid Dubbel.

Serving type: bottle

10-08-2006 04:41:38 | More by uberabr
Photo of barefootbrewer


4.22/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

This beer poured a cloudy dark brown color. The smell was a bit nutty and slightly sweet. The taste was bitter with coffee and caramel tones. The mouthfeel is full and chewy. The carbonation is perfect to balance out the mouthfeel. I like this beer a lot and consider it a highly drinkable beer.

Serving type: bottle

10-07-2006 00:04:26 | More by barefootbrewer
Photo of mjc410


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

The pour from a 75 cL bottle into my Westy chalice (close enough, right?) raises a quick-falling one finger tan head with thick sudsy lacing. The body is a deep, translucent ruby-copper. I like the lacing, but the head is lacking. The nose is very rich and fruity, with a lot of cocoa depth. The taste is very mellow and bready, with light cocoa notes and slight rich dark fruitiness. The mouth is over medium, with nice active carbonation. This is a very drinkable ale that I will be revisiting.

Serving type: bottle

09-29-2006 00:32:37 | More by mjc410
Photo of jmz62565


3.85/5  rDev -7.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

This beer pours a dark brown mahogony with a giamy foamy head. Carbonation is crazy in this beer. The smell has alcohol, roasted malt,nuts, and dark fruit. The taste,like the smell, has nuts,roasted malt, and dark fruit. A good flavor,but I was a little disapointed that this is nothing really special. The m/f is light with the flavors mixing well ,except that the aftertaste is abit watery. Not a bad beer and you can't really taste the alcohol,but I was a little disapointed because I expected more from this brewery.

Serving type: bottle

09-23-2006 22:01:49 | More by jmz62565
Photo of Damian


3.6/5  rDev -13.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 3

Drank on-tap at Redbones, Somerville, MA

Poured a deep, ruby brown/black with a medium, pillowy, light tan head that faded to swirls of froth. Lots of beautiful, cascading lacing.

Aroma was hardly noticeable at first but became more apparent as the beer warmed. Yeasty, bready and woody with intense malts, brown sugar, ripe fruits and some alcohol.

Taste was similar yet more pronounced. Initially, sweet malts, dried fruits and a general oakiness were discernable, yet they were quickly overshadowed by the overwhelming alcohol punch. Finish was quite hoppy and dry for a dubbel.

Rich, heavy, creamy mouthfeel and perfect carbonation. The beer felt like a pillow on my tongue.

Overall, a good beer, but I wish the alcohol flavor could have been masked more effectively.

As a side note, I have tried this beer both on-tap and in a bottle and the bottled version seems to exhibit much richer and smoother flavors, as well as a reduced hop and alcohol profile.

Serving type: on-tap

09-19-2006 04:43:19 | More by Damian
Photo of arnulfooxblood


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

Poured from 12 oz. bottle.

Appearance--Deep brown, with 2 fingers worth of thick, lacy head. How can you dislike a bottle with a monk enjoying a glass of beer on the label?

Taste/Mouthfeel--Nice full bodied beer. Rich, sweet malty flavor. Palpable, but not unpleasant alcohol after taste.

Drinkability--for a stronger beer, it goes down pretty easy.

Serving type: bottle

09-15-2006 00:23:51 | More by arnulfooxblood
Photo of rarevos

New York

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

Poured into Chimay goblet. Served at 55 degrees.

A: Dark cola-brown with fluffy tan head.

S: Sweet malt, toffee, hint of fruit, like figs, dates, cherries.

T/M: Creamy and sweet at first, with hints of chocolate, caramel, and butterscotch. Middle is sweet and fruity (cherries, figs), and the finish is malty and long with more creamy sweetness and a very light bitterness. Nicely warming.

D: It's a bit on the strong side for a Dubbel, but it's very rich, smooth, and tasty. A nice sipping beer, currently being enjoyed during a chilly rainstorm.

Serving type: bottle

09-14-2006 21:30:50 | More by rarevos
Photo of Suds


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

This beer is a rustic, rusty-brown color with an absolutely enormous head. It’s a little hazy and murky, and produces a fantastic lace. The aroma is classic Belgian…earthy and doughy, with a lot of aromatic malt. There’s some sugar and candy-like sweet smells, along with yeast and peppery spice, dark fruit, and caramel. Yummy. The taste is slightly sweet, with a little alcohol and yeast. There’s a slight tangy-tart quality that appears in the midtaste, and the finish has a nice balancing dry bitterness. Moderate-to-full bodied. This is a fantastic brew, and a benchmark for the style.

Serving type: bottle

09-10-2006 20:40:46 | More by Suds
Photo of jasonguit


4.33/5  rDev +4.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Served from a 750ml Bottle into a Duvel Tulip glass.

A - Nice, rich translucent brown with a head that went from just over the D on a Duvel glass to the lip and lasted for 3 or 4 minutes. Settled to about a finger of head with excellent lacing.

S - Has that awesome malty/earthy smell so many darker Belgians have. Kind of a cross between cereal and coffee.

T - More fruity than nutty with a slightly bitter finish that fades back to the malt. Very tasty and complex. The 8% abv is well hidden on this one too.

M - Fairly carbonated, but not as much as say a Trois Pistoles.

D - Very easy. Goes down smooth with little complaint. It has basically taken me a year to learn to pace myself with these tasty big Belgians. You could easily drink one of these bottles in no time, but the alcohol would catch up shortly there after.

All in all a great ale. Probably in my top 3 or 4 for a darker Belgian and probably my favorite dubble. Easy to drink but with enough flavor that you slow down and savour it without having to tell yourself to.

Serving type: bottle

09-08-2006 05:42:43 | More by jasonguit
Photo of GratefulBeerGuy

New Hampshire

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

Big bomber> Ovrsize wine goblet.

Poured a brown/mahogany with red hues in direct light. Massive 3" lively head, off-white in color which dissiapted to a thin lacy covering.

Smelled of sweet malts, yeast, wheat and flowery leafy hop. Slight red wine scent.

Taste: sweet and sour, yeasty malt. slightly bitter leafy hop with a white wine effect.

Feels very bubbly and active, seems to dance on the palate like a good Belgian dubble should. Seems to evaporate on the tongue giving it a champagne type feel.

8 % ABV is a strong brew, but the feel and taste is enough to make you forget that.

Serving type: bottle

09-08-2006 03:44:14 | More by GratefulBeerGuy
Photo of BillyB

New Jersey

4.13/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Appearance was a deep dark ruby red, almost brown.
Nice tan head.

Aromas are very pleasant plum, raisins, dried dark fruit. Nuts, bready, yeasty aromas as well.

The taste is excellent. Similar to the Westvleteren 8 but not quite as complex. Rum, candy sugar, raisins, plums, nuts, bread even toffee.

Mouthfeel is crisp and carbonic with an alcoholic warmth.

I don't know how many of these I could drink due to the richness but I'd be willing to try a few.

Serving type: bottle

09-05-2006 19:10:36 | More by BillyB
Photo of akorsak


4.72/5  rDev +13.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

This is a 330 mL bottle served in a Troegenator seidel. The ale is cold but warming.

A: The ale is a deep dark brown color, hazy with a full head and lace.

S: Smell is full of strong alefruits and strong heady yeast. Very deep and complex.

T: The beer is deep and full of flavors. Some chocolate notes highlight the beer, along with sweet applebutter, dates and figs.

M: The ale is of the knock-your-socks-off variety. The flavors are so powerful in the mouth that you'd easily confuse this for some of the more well-known Trappist varieties.

D: 8% is tough, but the beer is top notch.

Serving type: bottle

08-30-2006 12:55:52 | More by akorsak
Photo of brewdlyhooked13


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

Appearance - a plum/scarlet red pour, held properly to light you will see lots of sediment flaoting about. The head is off white to a pale nicotine yellow around the edge of the chalice in which it sits. Fluffs up big initially and settles down but keeps a complete, solid cover.

Aroma - malts and chocolate yeast and figs and rum. A mild spicy alcohol burn on the inhale.

Taste - roasted malts, classic Belgian sweetness, alcohol enhancing some rum and chocolate flavors. The alcohol and chocolate take over on the swallow, a nice warm feeling on the finish. Mmmm....

Mouthfeel - highly carbonated, further reminding one to sip and take their time. A little heavier than average but not by much.

Drinkability - a fine Belgian, tasty and delicious.

Serving type: bottle

08-30-2006 03:20:59 | More by brewdlyhooked13
Photo of klewis


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

11.2 oz bottle; 3/2/10 best before date

A: Pours a murky brown with light sediment and a big foamy head that settles to a nice layer of froth. Heavy lacing.

S: Bready aromas with notes of dark fruits, spice, and alcohol

T: A bit sour with fruity malt flavors. A bit of alcohol and Belgian farmhouse funk thrown into the taste for good measure.

M: Full-bodied with fine, active carbonation. Chewy and sticky, the flavor lingers for quite a long time.

D: A very good beer, but at $3.29 per 11.2, this isn't one that I'll find myself drinking regularly.

Serving type: bottle

08-26-2006 20:57:56 | More by klewis
St. Bernardus Prior 8 from Brouwerij St. Bernardus NV
93 out of 100 based on 1,757 ratings.