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St. Bernardus Prior 8 - Brouwerij St. Bernardus NV

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

Educational use only; do not reuse.

1,003 Reviews
very good

(Read More)
Reviews: 1,003
Hads: 2,191
rAvg: 4.15
pDev: 8.19%
Wants: 131
Gots: 257 | FT: 5
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.
View: Beers (12) | Events
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of St. Bernardus Prior 8 Alström Bros
Reviews: 1,003 | Hads: 2,191
Photo of Hex92
4.67/5  rDev +12.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Oh man....I LOVE this beer. I am a big fan of dubbels in general, but this beer was amazing. It was all I could do to keep myself from gulping it down it was so incredibly smooth. I wish I had bogth another bottle. The Prior is much smoother than the Abt - not that I don't like the Abt. Sorry I can't give a better description of the taste - I don't do the 'hints of coriander and spice' descriptions. I will just say if you like Dubbels, pick up a couple bottles of this beer.
Forgot that I had drank this beer before I just tried it again and didn't think of it quite as highly. I marked it down 0.5 to 1 point in every category.

Bought the St Bernardus gift pack for myself this year. So I will get the chance to rate all 4 of their beers. I have been a big fan of the abt 12 since I first tried it maybe 12 years ago, but I dont think I have tried any of their other flavors.

Poured it into their nice chalice/goblet. Nice head and color to the beer. Looks great in the glass.

The smell is Ok, but not amazing. kinda run of the mill for the style.
taste is more of the same. good, but not great. i saw that someone else said that it had a slightly metallic taste. I was thinking the exact same thing when I read their review.

M- too bubbly for me.and doesn't coat the mouth as well as I would like.

O- this is a good beer....but nothing compares to the abt 12. If I was going to spend the cash I would prefer the Ommegang Abbey Ale if going for the same style. Or the Abt 12 if I wanted to get the best beer they make (still to be confirmed since I have the tripel and pater to drink still) (1,604 characters)

Photo of Ieatlambfries
4.33/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

The appearance of this dubble was excellent. Dark, dark brown with an immense tan head and plenty of yeast floating about. The smell was sweet and yeasty with some hints of the fruit notes contained within. The taste was excellent as well. Up front yeast and bread followed by some fruity notes, and then a warm alcohol finish. The alcohol is present yet not overwhelming. Very similar to the abt 12, although not quite as sweet, and the fruit taste's are not as discernible. Mouthfeel is creamy and satisfying, although the carbonation is filling in itself. Drinkability is excellent, the lack of sweetness when compared to the abt 12 makes this actually more drinkable than it's big brother. Defiantly something to try if you get the chance. (743 characters)

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

Presentation: 33 cl bottle from a St Bernardus Sampler Pack (with free St. Bernardus Goblet included). Appearance: Opaque dark brown (I looked for other colors and could not see them) with a 1/2 inch off-white head that stuck around for a good long time. Aroma: I am in heaven! Lots of different sweet desserty fruits (brandied plums, raisins, chocolate). Flavor: The aroma follows through in this meal of a beer (OK, dessert of a beer) with bready (date nut bread?) chocolaty, and slightly coffeeish flavor. The head helped make for a very smooth creamy mouthfeel. This is the first time I have tried it, and it is easily one of my favorites. (643 characters)

Photo of OldFrothingSlosh
4.12/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

11.2oz bottle warmed to near room temperature and served in the St. B gift pack glass. What appears to be the best by date of: "Consumir preferentemente antes de fin de: 2005"

Apperance: A fairly aggressive pour results in a deep and dark brown in color. Many little yeasties swirling all around. Thick off-white head billowed up nicely and settles to a 1/8" thick layer. Nice lacing of the glass.

Smell: Dark fruits and a "musty" character noticed. Some vinous qualitites as well. Ripe bannanas in the background.

Taste: Certainly no thin beer in this bottle! Thick-tasting, with a malty sweetness that paired nicely with the ripened fruit flavors. Finished with a pronounced fullness. Slight warming effect from the alcohol. Lasting sweetness on the lips.

Mouthfeel and Drinkability: Med-High in body. Creamy smooth on the palate. One to sit by the fire with with your best dog at your feet, while the chill rain falls outside. Slow down and savor this one. (972 characters)

Photo of euskera
4.15/5  rDev 0%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

11.2 oz bottle served into a St. Bernardus goblet. Raisiny-brown color with a nice fluffy head and a nice bit of carbonation. Smell is reminiscent of its more potent sibling, but a little more restrained. Dead-on for the style. Plenty of spice in the body, a bit of a banana-bread feel with a nice alcohol backbone. Flavors not as developed as the Abt 12, but that's exactly what I expected.Smooth mouthfeel, almost velvety. Eminently drinkable, a worthly little brother to the 12. Hats off again to the smiling monk.. (518 characters)

Photo of merlin48
4.12/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

11.2 oz bottle served at cellar temp. into a St Bernardus goblet. Pours a somewhat murky dark chestnut brown, with a light cocoa head that has excellent retention. Sheet lacing all over the goblet is impressive to behold. Aroma is of a classic Belgian of this style. Earthiness, spices such as cloves and coriander, a whiff of alcohol, and the tug of war between the dark fruits and the pineapple/mango/banana. Moderate carbonation tingles the mouth, before seeming to melt like a marshmallow. Taste is not nearly as complex as the nose, or as other St Bernardus offerings I've sampled, but is very well balanced with a hop presence to counter the sweet malt backbone. Finish is clean and a bit dry. Nothing to complain about here, and this one is another St Bernardus that made me glad I bought the 4 bottle sampler pack that included the nice goblet. Wish I had bought the other 3 sampler packs that were left on the shelf. (925 characters)

Photo of mickeymac
4.23/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Typical 11.2 oz Beglian bottle with an orange label and a jolly old fellow that reminds me a bit of my dear-departed grandfather. It pours dark brown with a fat off-white head with amazing retention. The head sticks to everything it touches and looks like a sand-blaster will be necessary to remove it. In other words, it's a damn fine-looking beer. The smell is nice dark fruit but a bit more alcohol than expected for an 8% abv beer. Raisins, ripe plum, and a hint of cherry are backed with a twinge of tartness. Although the flavor is on the tame side compared to others of its style, it's a very classy/classic tasting beer. Very nice for a cool winter afternoon. (667 characters)

Photo of GreenCard
3.7/5  rDev -10.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: mahogany brown, a huge layer of tan foam builds up and slowly compresses to a thin persistent cap, almost opaque

Aroma: malty sweet, cloves, cinnamon, raisins, alcohol, pear fruitiness; very inviting

Flavor: a subdued malt sweetness balanced with a mild hop bitterness, some cloviness and a bit of yeasty overtone, raisins, less complex than it smells, finish is semi-dry w/ a slight bitterness and spice in the aftertaste

Mouthfeel: medium body, club-soda carbonation, alcohol warmth

Overall Impression: A nice bruin from a great brewery. Abt 12 is obviously the shining star, so it's easy to overlook their other beers which are also quite good. Just look at how many reviews there are for the 12 as opposed to this one! (746 characters)

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

Thick foamy tan head built of big bubbles. The beer is dark brown in color, only a little light makes it through, and small light brown flecks of yeast float throughout. The aroma is of malty bread and burnt nuts. The flavor is a mix of dark fruits, bitter chocolate,and other flavors that I can't quite get. A fairly complex beer with a moderate body and plenty of carbonation. (378 characters)

Photo of WVbeergeek
4.12/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 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. (654 characters)

Photo of Sixpack595
4.03/5  rDev -2.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours a dark brown with a thin tan head thats last till the end. Aroma is typical Belgian, yeasty and bready with banana and bubblegum. Taste is sweet and malty with raisin and cherry. Slightly spicy with a dry finish. Mouthfeel is spot on. Very drinkable, hiding the ABV very well. (282 characters)

Photo of Crosling
4.5/5  rDev +8.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours a dark musty burgundian brown with tiny sediment particles clinching to the sides of the entire glass. The head is mountainous, dense and definately Belgian. Sheets of lacing left all over the glass with the head lasting the entire session. Rich aroma of red licorice, sweet malts, raisins, yeast and bread. A very vibrant and diverse flavor profile of caramel apples, raisins, figs, cane sugars, spices, sweet candy, yeast and alcohol. Trememdously balanced! Full mouthfeel and a smooth aftertaste that lingers on and on. Stupendous! (540 characters)

Photo of moulefrite
4.5/5  rDev +8.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A very good brew indeed! God, I love the stuff that comes out of this place! The beer pours about as dark brown as the spectrum allows with hints of orange. An awesome head forms and sticks like mad throughout. Aromas are all about sweet malt, vanilla cream, chocolate banana, dried fruit, very assertive in flavor....a baby version of the awesome ABT 12. Perhaps a bit lighter, but the mouthefeel is still one of large-ness, and complex-ness, this is a super sipper, and perhaps the perfect beer to offer before the ABT 12. Start with the triple and call it a day! I can't say enough about the value found here at this facility. Find them and buy them! I paid 2.99 for this and the triple. 3.49 for the 12-serious chit. (720 characters)

Photo of CRJMellor
3.72/5  rDev -10.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours a murky dark brown with maroon highlights. Enormous dishsoap head, tremendous lace. Aromas of vanilla, dark tropical fruits and cough syrup. Taste is very malty with a little bit of the dark fruit in the aroma. No bitterness whatsoever and finish is a little watery. Fairly tasty but nothing special. (306 characters)

Photo of AtLagerHeads
4.15/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

The murky cola look is is followed by a nice nose of fruity goodness. Lots of plums, cherries and raisins luking in there with a very nice earthy overlay from the yeast. The flavor is dried fruits much along the lines established by the aroma. The feel is medium with nice crisp and clean lines. Decent drinkability. (316 characters)

Photo of Boilermaker88
4.33/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Presented in an 11oz brown bottle. Having sampled Prior 8, I now know why the monk on the label is so happy. This is one delicious brew!
Prior 8 was a uniform dark brown with an eternal creamy tan head that left great sheets of lace in the glass. An enticing blend of molasses, bready malt, dark fruits, and alcohol spurred me on to quickly take a sip. What a complex variety of flavors; with each sip it seemed a new flavor made its presence known. Dark fruits - plums, raisins, and cherries - along with molasses and candy sugar, hints of chocolate, and spices (coriander, nutmeg, anise, and pepper) all co-existed in perfect harmony over a sturdy backbone of yeast and roasted malt. A modest hops zip and alcohol bite finished this wonderful beer. The feel was full, rich, and creamy.
Prior 8 struck me as the slightly more alcohol-laden version of the Pater 6. Prior 8 is wonderfully drinkable but can put a bit of a dent in one’s sobriety. Another superb beer by the monks at Brouwerij Sint Bernardus. (1,009 characters)

Photo of Gueuzedude
4.12/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 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. (696 characters)

Photo of beerguy101
4.1/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

Dark brown color. Medium white foamy head. Aroma is malty, bready and sweet. A medium bodied Belgian Ale. Malts are sweet and fruity. Nicely spicy. Touch of molasses, cane sugar, dark fruits (plums and cherries) and spices. Touch of mustiness. Mouthfeel is full and round. Finish is clean and smooth. Aftertaste is slightly sweet. (330 characters)

Photo of putnam
4.95/5  rDev +19.3%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Primal forces of nature were disturbed when I uncapped my 33cl bottle. Impatient, sluggish masses of foam ooze out of the bottle. It's darker brown than the pater 6.
Brown sugar and spice are accompanied by zesty, winey fruits of boysenberry, plum and melon on the nose. Also present are notes of anise, vanilla, nutmeg and broth.
On the palate it's dry, with brown, braised nuts folding into vanilla bean into date into pepper. Slatey, intense mineral dryness cleanses the long finish.
Wow! (494 characters)

Photo of diablo14
4.82/5  rDev +16.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

wow! what a beer. i cant remember being so moved by a beer since the first time i had gouden carolus. a total gem.

poured with one of the most intriuging colors ive ever seen. almost a puce like color, it resembled fresh dark grape juice. if anyones been to a grape stomping festival youll know what i mean. marvellous head also. beige color that was speckled with brown and remained huge throughout. magnificent nose, a real sensory awakening. huge malt factor, chocolatey, dried fruits present, wonderful sweet candy sugar and yeast aromas. flavors resemble the same, with cloves, and also had the taste of new red grapes as well as dried, with citrus zest also. some toffee like tinges coming thru too. has a medicinal character with a great hop balance that wasnt bitter, but had a lovely dryness. totally perfect. rich and incredibly clean all at once. reminded me a little of norfolk punch. not to mention the multitude of jets that were shooting up the side of my duvel glass for the whole perimeter. spectacular.

one of the truly great belgian beers and one ill be giving further inspection for the rest of my beer drinking life. fair dinkum, beer drinking doesnt get much better than this. a bona fide classic. (1,226 characters)

Photo of mydeadguy
4.32/5  rDev +4.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured a deep hazy ruby tinged brown, with yeast in suspension, and orange hints. The head is composed of small bubbles, its fluffy and lasts and lasts.
scents include sweet malt, bread, and ripe fruit.
The taste is rich and creamy, smooth and full with a fluffy texture, a slight bitterness and the end, along with a bit of warming alcohol. This one sticks a bit to the palate in a pleasant way..I prefered this one over their tripel. Quite quaffable.. (456 characters)

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

Deep and somewhat murky looking burgandy. Big and hefty pillowy light beige head. Retention is stupendous. Aroma is yeast sediment, must, candy, raisin, rum and bread. This beer is pretty delicate in its flavor profile. The first impressions I get are rumcake and bread pudding. Then some dark fruits enter the picture. Black cherry. Plum. Eventually some alcohol soaked raisins and sweet candy/ bubblegum esters seep into the picture. This beer feels like velvet in the mouth. Low carbonation and about medium body. Nice little beverage here. (543 characters)

Photo of Rumrunner
3.87/5  rDev -6.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

11.2 oz. bottle.

A very well made ale but it is too sweet for me.

It pours a deep brown. A large off white head. Head dissipates but lacing stays and sticks to the glass nicely. The scents are sweet and brown sugar is very present. Carbonation tickles the nose while the floral hops peek out around caramel and sweet malts.

The flavors are very sweet. Brown sugar, carob and caramel are very present. This is a ver malty brew. Hops are floral and provide a balance to the ale. The hops flavor is minimal. This ale is really about the malts. After the hops sneak hot for a hello there is a toasted breadiness and a big buttery finish. A very well put together ale, but it is just too sweet for me.

If feels like watery syrup. Medium bodied. Carbonation fills the mouth. It is not an ale I would personally drink more than one in a row. This is definately a dessert ale for my tastes. (894 characters)

Photo of Realale
3.9/5  rDev -6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

Deep rich slightly opaque mahogany. Lots of chunks, but these settle quickly. Extremely fine beige 2" head settles slowly to a solid 1/4" leaving huge amounts of lace.

Nose is very rich and complex. Sugary caramel over sweet bready malt. Touch of rum and raisin. Bit of citrus zest as well, adding lift. Classic.

On the heavy side in the mouth. Quite sweet, which overpowers the underlying malt at this time. No hop apparent, and only a bit of acidity and the carbonation to try to balance the sweetness. Rummy notes come out, but no palate impression from the alcohol Needs time in the cellar to resolve. Finish is long, and sweet.

Mouthfeel is very good. Fine, soft bottle-conditioned goodness. Gives what balance there is to the palate and nice length to the finish. Too sweet at this stage to rate highly on the drinkability scale. Nice with a slice of fruitcake or on its own as dessert at this stage in its development.

330 ml bottle. Best before date of end of 2004. (986 characters)

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

Appearance – The body came out solid dark with a nice, tan head.

Smell – The roasted malt aroma mixed well with the dark brown, raw, and cane sugars. There’s also some dark, ripe fruitiness to this one, predominantly apricots and bananas.

Taste – The sugars really come out at the tongue. They are evenly balanced though by the strong, dark malt flavor that resembles chocolate bread and the noticeable alcohol notes.

Mouthfeel – Very creamy and carbonated. This AT is medium-bodied (on the heavy side) and chewy.

Drinkability – This was a wonderful ale that went down nicely and was a joy to consume. (619 characters)

St. Bernardus Prior 8 from Brouwerij St. Bernardus NV
93 out of 100 based on 1,003 ratings.