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St. Bernardus Prior 8 - Brouwerij St. Bernardus NV

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

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2,033 Ratings
very good

(view ratings)
Ratings: 2,033
Reviews: 986
rAvg: 4.15
pDev: 8.92%
Wants: 113
Gots: 199 | FT: 2
Brewed by:
Brouwerij St. Bernardus NV visit their website

Style | ABV
Dubbel |  8.00% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: kbub6f on 09-27-2002

No notes at this time.
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 2,033 | Reviews: 986 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of 51mmz0rz
4.7/5  rDev +13.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A: nice head, very good lacing. Body is a cloudy dark brown.

S: Good dark fruit smell, some alcohol and spice; its pretty amazing.

T: Crazy flavor, really great complex yeasty fruitiness.

M: Carbonation is a little coarse, but otherwise the mouthfeel is silky smooth and delicious.

D: I would love to drink this all night, but the abv is a bit high.

Overall this is a great dubbel, and deserves the praise.

Photo of everetends
4.08/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

33 cl bottle I got out of a St. Bernardus Mixed pack. Poured into a goblet that bares the brewery's name.

A: Poured a nice dark brown that has the look of cola when you hold it to the light. Nice, rocky tan head that sticks and patterns the glass all the way down. Beautiful beer, damn near exceptional.

S: Smell is of yeast, dark fruit, spices, herbs, grapes, and a touch of alcohol.

T: Taste is of the yeast and a touch of dark fruit and grapes. A spicy flavor comes across, pepper mostly. Alcohol is there but not too much in your face. Has a great balance.

M: Great again. Creamy, full bodied brew that really coats the mouth and lets you enjoy what this beer wants you to enjoy.

D: This is a great beer but you probably don't want to hit too many. One a night is more than enough. This beer has amazing balance and feel, Can't wait to experience the other brews this brewery has to offer.

Photo of cbros
3.15/5  rDev -24.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Serving type- Bottle with best on date printed on back of bottle poured into a tulip glass.

A- Pours a dark purple with a white lace throughout. No activity present in the beer.

S- Smells strong of concord grapes mixed with alcohol.

T- Tastes of grapes and other fruit mixed with alcohol that is prevalent at the end.

I picked this up after trying other Belgium styles and have not been impressed. To me this really tastes like a grape soda that has been infused with alcohol. It was too sweet for me but I can see this beer appealing to those who don't have alot of experience with many Belgium styles.

Photo of gonzo46and2
4.45/5  rDev +7.2%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Appearance is a medium cloudy brown. Pours a big fluffy head.

Smell: Dark breads, Roasted nuts, brown sugar, and dark fruits.

Taste: Hearty spiced bread but a bit boozy. Very satisfying.

Mouthfeel: Medium with an active carbonation.

Drinkability: Very high.

Photo of PhxHorn
3.59/5  rDev -13.5%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a dark brown color with a fluffy white head with some little speckles in it. Smells of dried fruit and malt, and tastes very mildly of figs, blackberries and some other assorted spices. Lots of little hints of flavors, but jsut not much overall quantity of flavor. I got bored before finishing the glass; just not that interesting overall.

Photo of gpogo
4.05/5  rDev -2.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A- Extremely dark brown with large creamy off-white head that dissipates.

A- Sweet malty dark fruits aroma. Not as heavy of a belgian yeast as I have experienced in other dubbels.

T- Sweet rich malty flavor. Slight peppery spiciness. Finishes dry with slight alcohol flavor.

M- Medium-full body with high carbonation. Very slight alcohol warmth.

D- Not as flavorful and complex as I expected, but a very enjoyable dubbel.

Photo of Greggy
4.42/5  rDev +6.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A- Very dark fruit, heavy sediment. Head recedes to a thin cap.

S- Nice spiciness, dark fruit, cherry, cocoa, light pepper, green apple.

T- Big alcohol, nice spiciness, big pepper, dry hopiness.

M- light carb lets the beer's maltiness do the talking.

D- A nice dubbel. I really enjoyed the immense pepper.

Photo of PiecefulToker
4.25/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

11.2 oz bottle with date markings of "09 08 12."

A: This looks amazing. Very dark reddish brown, opaque, but not cloudy. Very thick, almost like nitro, head that sustains a 1-finger head.

S: Wow. Raisins, molasses, dark maple syrup, pralines, with some alcohol at the end. This beer is fun to just smell.

T: I'm excited for this... Not as sweet as I expected in the beginning, but some residual sweetness comes through at the end. The carbonation nips my tongue at first followed by some sourness, then a slow progression of different caramelized sugar flavors and those mentioned above under "smell." Some alcohol comes in and warms my throat and stomach. It coats my mouth and the flavors linger in my mouth for quite a while. This is very enjoyable, and one I will stretch over an hour or so, enjoying the different flavors as it warms up.

M: Very pleasant, medium carbonation, medium body, but like a thin syrup.

D: Low, but only because this is so amazing. I want to savor one of these over a long period, and I will only drink this on occasion.

Photo of deanhead
4.3/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured a deep rich brown color. Rich with bubbles

Taste of Carmel and & toffee, nice rummy overtones, sweet and slighlty winer taste, hint of currants

Aroma- scent of Carmel & sweet toffee. Some raisin like notes as well

Mouthfeel is thin and light bodied & extremely carbonated

highly quaffable beer. Highly recommended

Photo of BleedBlueUSAF
4.4/5  rDev +6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

I busted out the 750 of this tonight in celebration of the new 12 hour shifts my shop is working!

I worked the cork out and the pop it made scared the shit out of me, this stuff has a solid carbonated base to it and I immediately smelled belgian yeast, malts, alcohol, caramel, fruits (even a bit of coffee!) I definately love the smell of this one.

It pours out a beautiful opaque mahogany with a thin layer of beautiful tan head that swirls around the Chimay Chalice I poured it into like a beautiful galaxy of... beer. This is a gorgeous copper caramel beauty.

The taste!

This beer is complex. There's a definate alcohol bite that keeps reminding me it's there. Caramel, figs, hazelnut, dates... it's well balanced medium bodied and wonderful. Definatley a good brew!!

Drinkability is high, but I don't know if I could drink this all night. It'd be a waste, if nothing else.

Top notch brew, highly recommended!

Photo of BeerLover729
3.66/5  rDev -11.8%
look: 3 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

A: Small one finger head tops this dark brown beverage.

S: The nose is full of dark fruit esters along with some bruised banana and a peppery finish.

T: A slight roastyness is detectable among the sea of caramel malty flavors that swish around in this bottle. There is a light but sharp astringent crispness in the finish.

M: Light medium body with a medium to sharp carbonation and a light syrupy consistency.

D: Relatively slow sipping beer with a mild cloyingness in the finish.

Notes: Decent dubbel.

Photo of Slynger
4.1/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

The ocho pours an orange-ruby brown, with a big, fuzzy, light sand colored head.

Smells of Belgian yeast firstly. Sweet dark fruits are balanced out by some tart fruitiness. Brown sugar sweetness mingles with some black pepper spice. An excellent nose.

The taste trails slightly behind the awesome smell. It full and lushly carbonated with a light and prickly sharpness of dark fruits and bready malts. Some tart apples and pears round out the flavor along with some peppery spice in the finish.

Ah the ocho. A very fine dubbel.

Photo of mwilbur
3.88/5  rDev -6.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured from bottle into chalice.
A: Very dark brown with very thick tan head that slowly dissipates leaving nice lacing behind.
S: Raisin, malt, bready yeast, and clove. Similar to 6, but stronger aroma.
T: Quite representative of smell...similar dark fruit (raisin), malt, doughy bread, clove, and cinnamon. Not as full nor as complex as I was hoping for.
M: Medium body, but light on the tongue. With higher ABV, taste lingers a little which is nice.
D: Good drinkability and better than the 6, but still not a great dubbel.

Photo of Matty1918
4.18/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured into my Chimay chalice.

Poured a hazy, caramel with a small head. lots of carbonation.

Aroma was of nut, slight caramel....very malty aroma

Very malty ale. A slight spice with hints of caramel, nut...lots of malt. A tad sweet aftertaste.

A very good tasting ale. This one can creep up on ya...glad I bought a 4 pack. I'll have more tonight but keep the other 2 for later.

Photo of armock
4.2/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Poured a ruby brownish color with a huge off white head that leaves lacing

S - This has a strong malt backbone with dark fruit scents

T - The dark fruits come out first then the malt comes through

M - This is a medium bodied beer with a lot of carbonation

D - This was pretty easy to drink it has a good taste I'd get this for someone new to Belgians worth a try

Photo of hwwty4
3.86/5  rDev -7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured this 11.2oz bad boy into my Val-Dieu goblet. Pours a cherry brown with mahogany tones when held up to the light. Poured a huge, creamy-tan head that stuck around the entire length of the beer and left really sticky lacing down the length of the glass. This is a really pretty beer. Smell was a bit of a let down. There are definite notes of figs and raisins and just a hit of cinnamon. Not much else. This has a very straightforward aroma. Taste is interesting. There are the definite notes of a normal Dubbel but there is an after taste that I can't quite place my tongue on. The only thing I can say is that it tastes like the flavors I sometimes see in my homebrews. Not a bad taste, not even necessarily off. Mouthfeel is medium bodied that finishes dry. Nothing would prevent me from buying this beer again.

Photo of NEhophead
4.45/5  rDev +7.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

25.4 fl oz brown bottle; corked & caged.
Served in a goblet.

Pours a hazy, murky caramel with a dull, garnet hue. Creamy, tanned head with plenty of active carbonation; however, good retention as a delicate sheet. Thin and spotted lacing with impressive strength.

Semi-sweet caramel and toffee. Notes of vinous fruit: red apple, grape, fig. Slightly musty; notes of cognac. Pepper, corriander, cinnamon, and vanilla spices.

Rich and creamy caramel and soft, milk chocolate. Flavorful hazlenut and vanilla. Fig, raisin, and date flavors that are rounded. Very active carbonation with notes of banana and clove at mid-sip. Rich, but not heavy with a nutty aftertaste.

Medium bodied; soft, creamy, and slightly dry. Lots of carbonation which is expected; but otherwise, well rounded.

A full flavored, balanced Dubbel. Probably the most flavorful, authentic version of the style I've had to date. Tough to find flaws.

Photo of tpd975
4/5  rDev -3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Reddish brown hue with ample carbonation. Tall rocky tan head with sheet after sheet of lacing. Excellent head retention. Rather Nice.

S: Bread, yeast, and dark fruits. Being a fan of St. B can't wait to tast solvent. I can't wait to taste this one.

T: Ah yes wonderful dark sweet fruits. Candied plums, and spiced figs. Dark molasses, brown sugar dark malts. Wonderfully crafted Belgian brew.

M: Perfect carbonation. Medium bodied. Smooth finish.

D: Very! Being a double you can put a few more away than your average Belgian brew. Great taste rather enjoyable.

Overall: Those monks at St. B sure know what they are doing. Love their quad and triple and the dubbel does not disappoint either. There is a reason they have been brewing beer for as long as they have and this is one of them.

Photo of bgramer
3.88/5  rDev -6.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

The bottle poured a light brown liquid into my Westy chalet resulting in a head about 2 fingers thick and a thick dark liquid.

It was very dark fruity - mainly raisins and plums and a thin dry finish towards the end - I want to say it's salty but I can't be sure.
The carbonation mellowed out and as I drank it, left nice lacing on the glass.

An easy Belgian to drink.

Photo of bigluch1
4.2/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Dark Mahogany with a thin beige head.

S: Lightly sweet, scent of carmel, malts, and honey.

T: Some sweetness with a taste of spices, yeast, alocohol, caramel, and bready malts.

M: Medium bodied, chewy, lighter than a stout.

D: Smooth, with a lingering of alcohol.

Photo of morimech
4.19/5  rDev +1%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Poured a dark reddish brown into my St. Bernardus goblet. The head was smallish and did not have great retention. A thin cap sits on top of the beer and some lacing is noted. A bit disapointing overall.

Prior 8 has a rum like aroma. Dark fruit and carmelized sugar comes to mind.

This has a nice dark fruit and slightly sweet flavor. Finishes clean with a medium body and good carbonation. The sweetness doesn't hang around at all. The beer is easy to drink and ABV is not detectable. A very nice Dubbel and a benchmark for the style. Cost, high ABV, and availability hurts drinkability.

Photo of BlackHaddock
3.91/5  rDev -5.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

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.

Photo of blitz134
4.13/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Light brown when poured from the bottled, but quite dark when in the glass. Nice red hues when held to the light. Voluptuous light tan head that settled down to a quarter inch and eventually a thin while leaving nice lacing behind.

Nice dark fruit flavors, some cherry, but I get a bit more raisin and fig characters. Slight phenols and alcohol notes play well with the fruity esters, a touch of leather notes too.

Flavor is again dark fruits, raisiny with a finish leaning towards a touch of prunes. Also a light roasted character at the end. Alcohol is noticable but smooth. Yeast phenolics throughout. "Brew Like a Monk" states that St. B water is high in salt, and I think that it definately has a brine edge to it.

Mouthfeel is medium bodied, slighty sweet in the finish but dries up towards the end. A bit of prickly carbonation on the tongue.

Overally a very nice beer, as was expected from St. B. Pretty easy to drink, fairly complex, everything a Belgian should be really.

Photo of SurlyDuff
4.77/5  rDev +14.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

How often have I seen this on the shelf and passed it up? Too many times!

750ml caged and corked. Popped it and let this one warm up a bit. I normally enjoy my dubbel around 50-55 degrees.

First glass is clear, brown, with orange highlights coming through when I hold it up to the light. For the last glass I poured, I sloshed up the sediment and made sure to get a bunch of it. I usually enjoy the sediment/yeast at the bottom, and I like to try it both with and without if possible.

Fairly pillowy head, dense.

Buttered bread, raisins, dates, fig, dried fruits. Slightest alcohol bite there too, but since I had let it warm a bit, i think it's at the maximum.

Earthy cocoa and warm alcohol feeling at first. A malt presence is there too, making it very smooth and downright delicious.

Drinkability is superb, but i need to watch myself. It goes down like a session beer, but beware!

Photo of MuenchenerKindl
4.1/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

poured from a 11.2 oz bottle to a snifter, the liquid is a hazy brown with ok carbonation. The head is small, tan and leaves little lace.

The smell is nice, sweet caramel, dark sugars, over the yeasty back drop.

The taste is good, a nice mellow brew, dark sugar, slightly toasted caramel, and a chocolate note mixed over a base of dark fruits.

The mouthfeel is good, this is a lighter based brew with ok carbonation.

The drinkability is very good, the complex flavors are very nice, nothing disagreeable, a very easy and enjoyable brew to drink.

Prosit, MK

St. Bernardus Prior 8 from Brouwerij St. Bernardus NV
93 out of 100 based on 2,033 ratings.