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.
BA SCORE
93
outstanding

1,984 Ratings
THE BROS
90
outstanding

(view ratings)
Ratings: 1,984
Reviews: 976
rAvg: 4.16
pDev: 8.89%
Wants: 108
Gots: 172 | FT: 2
Brewed by:
Brouwerij St. Bernardus NV visit their website
Belgium

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)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | Likes | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of St. Bernardus Prior 8 Alström Bros
Ratings: 1,984 | Reviews: 976 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of Matty1918
4.22/5  rDev +1.4%
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
4.22/5  rDev +1.4%
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 JoEBoBpr
4.22/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured into my Chimay goblet.

A - Pours a nice light brown color with some red hues up to the light. It has nice and very active off-white head that recedes quickly and leaves a nice mat with some lacing.

S - Sweet malt grainy smell. Almost banan-nut bread like. Mild alcoholic esters are detected as well. Very attractive

T & M - Bready grains at the front followed by a nice spicy and sweetness with hints of clove and some cinnamon. Very attractive, complex and creamy mouthfeel. There is a real nice spiciness that I cant really point out but is very delicious. Creamy and pretty carbonated. Smooth.

D - Not too high. Very complex full bodied beer with a higher ABV.

Photo of grayburn
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.

Photo of scott451
4.22/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured into a Duvel tulip. A two finger light tan head on a slightly cloudy dark amber brown. A nice lace.

Sweet malts with some floral notes. Sweet dull fruits in the taste. A bit of a metallic taste in the middle. Noticable alcohol with a dry finish.

Medium body. Creamy. Notable carbonation at first but it soon calms down. An alcoholic finish. Very drinkable. Smooth. Not as sweet as some. Two thumbs up.

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

P8 pours serious deep brown amber with a very chunky and generous head. Nose of moderately roasted malts, molasses, marshmallow and rum soaked raisons predominate the wonderful aromatics of this brew. Flavors of roasted chicory and malts take precedence on the tongue. Velvety smooth and slightly sweet, the malts form a delicious coating and aftertaste in the mouth making a nicely made, perhaps slightly attenuated dubbel brown ale. This brew is presented in a pure, unadulterated and authentic format.
Prior 8 is very enjoyable and surprisingly quite drinkable.

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

Pours a nice dark cloudy brown. The aroma is instant and strong. Nice size head that slowly subsides and leaves decent lacing.
Wow, for a dubel, this one smells so complex. Raisons and sugars...a little booze...just to name a few.
This is definately a beer that needs to be closer to room temp. At fridge temp, it's a tad too carbonated, and distant in its belgian flavors.
As it warms...much better. Smooth, a little creamy actually-while the head remains. Dark over-ripe fruits. Decent dubel!

Photo of kiddynamite920
4.22/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Very similar to the Pater 6. Seems to have a whiter head, but still as voluminous. Faded a bit faster, but just as frothy and rich as the 6's head. The beer is more towards a brown color, not as much red going on here.

S: Much maltier and sweeter than the 6. It seems that there is less alcohol on the nose here as well. Dark cherries and plums. Some raisin. Noticing that this is also much less bitter with the hops than the 6.

T: Definitely more of a malt bomb. Belgian yeast is lovely here, sweet fruits and banana come forward. Very little going on with hops here, a slight citrus but nothing aggressive. No sign of alcohol on the palate either, simply a fantastic dubbel.

M: Thick and a bit chewy, but has a high carbonation bite towards the end that brings it all together. Well balanced beer.

D: Loving this St. Bernardus mixed 4 pack! Definitely calling it quits after the 6 and the 8 and saving the Tripel and 12 for another night. Fantastic beers for a great price, plus an awesome chalice.

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.

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

Pours a hazy ruby color with a huge off-white head that was lasting with good lacing. Heavy complex yeasty aroma. Medium body with a smooth texture and soft carbonation. Good complex sweet flavor with an balanced finish of moderate duration.

Very good brew.

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

Sampled at From The Vine beer tasting Jul 9th, 2004: Pours a lightly cloudy brown color with a light tan head. Thin lacing. The aroma is an interesting concoction of malt, raisin and caramel. Medium-bodied with a great Belgian feel from the get-go. Flavors of spice (cinnamon and coriander), yeast, warming alcohol and caramel. The finish is nicely complex with lots of spice and malt. I am a fan of the 12 and this beer is no slouch either.

Photo of SShelly
4.22/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

small bottle, found in the back of the fridge.

Pours a cloudy medium brown with a nice off white head, belgian lace and tons of retention.

Nice yeasty, estery aroma, not overpowering.

Flavor starts with medium malt upfront, and a little bit of estery character, fairly sweet finish with a slight carbonic bite, There is also a light toffey note throughout the flavor.

Overall a great dubbel, finishing slightly sweeter than others adds to its drinkability.

Photo of auro0006
4.22/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

I had this beer with in order of the other St. Bernardus line. Even after having a glass of three St. Bernardus beers beforehand, I still remember the flavor profile of the Prior.
The color is a copper-brown color with a little cloudiness. The head is frothy and creamy and leaves nice lace.
Aromas are dominantly sweet. Great amount of dark, dried fruits; raisins, prunes, plums. Carmel notes are present, but not too defined.
The body is full, rich, and creamy. I loved the flavor profile of this beer. Bready, cookie joined in with the great malty characteristics that mimicked the nose. A spicy, alcohol flavor appeared in the finish.

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

Poured from a 33cl bottle into a wide-mouth glass. Deep amber color with ruby/garnet highlights around the edge of the glass. One to two finger off-white head fell down to a layer of foam on the surface of the brew.

Aroma of dark fruits - figs, raisins - sweet malt and a hint of floral hops, bready yeast. Rich, complex flavors. Sweet, malty, fruit, some spiciness, maybe a hint of licorice? A little alcohol warmth at the end. Medium body, lively carbonation on the tongue, finishes more sweet than dry.

Overall, a very nice beer. The alcohol starts to show a bit as the beer warms, so can't see having too many of these in one night, but definitely one to have if available.

Photo of rfgetz
4.21/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Dark brown in color with some chestnut highlights when it catches the light, big frothy and dense tan head, swirls of lacing. Strong notes of yeast and caramel, notes of spice, dark fruit, molasses, dark bread, nuts, alcohol. Not as deep and complex as the nose, bread, caramel and sugar make up the malt profile, yeasty spice, fruit. Medium bodied. Solid all around.

Photo of ryan1788a5
4.21/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

11.2oz bottle poured into a goblet.

A: Hazy brown in color with tinges of orange. Beige head is lively and crackling. It retains very well, an small patches of delicate lacing dot the glass intermittently.

S: Bread pudding, raisin and other dried fruits, brown bread light caramel. Yeasty spice, touch of medicinal phenol. Whiff of rummy alcohol. Brown molasses.

T: Brown molasses up front. Dark caramel. Hint of cola. Lots of brown bread and crust. Bread pudding. Hint of grapey candi sugar. Raisin and dried fig. Yeasty spices. Dash of brown cocoa. Subtle medicinal phenol. Hollow, balancing hop bitterness. Touch of spicy alcohol treads lightly toward the back. Drying finish of bread crust and yeasty spice.

M: Medium thick body. Creamy. Plenty of scrubbing carbonation provides some lift. Warming alcohol is comforting.

O: A very well-made Abbey style dubbel. Very complex. Spot on. Nothing to criticize, just a damn good beer.

Photo of scotorum
4.21/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Best before date on this antique is 8/7/13. Which may explain the sediments and perhaps affected the taste. Since St. Bernardus has a five year life expectancy, this would be five and a half years old by now which would make it the oldest beer I have ever had.

Poured from the 11.2 oz. bottle into an Innis & Gunn flute.

a: Translucent red/brown with a lot of floaties and sediment. Might have poured this out a bit too vigorously. Finger and a half offwhite head receded to thick even surface foam and dense lacing.

s: Dark malt and fruit. The aroma becomes more luscious as it warms.

t: Nice fruity yeast and malt combo, with some cardboardy undertones which are not at all objectionable. Rather like my ideal Marzen, perhaps even better than the Northampton Brewery's version which is my favorite of that style, because it has more body to it. Dry finish. As it warms the dark fruit tones become more prominent (served this at 48 degrees F, the bottle label recommends a bit warmer would be ideal). Higher ABV is hardly evident.

m: Medium. Very smooth. Good carbonation even to the dregs pour.

o: Very easy drinking Abbey ale, which is my favorite style in Belgians besides Trippels and Quads. Perhaps due to its age it may be maltier than intended, but as it appears to have been bottle conditioned one might expect the yeast to have asserted itself more as well. Only price puts Ommegang's Abbey Ale and Sierra Nevada's Ovila ahead of it the next time I want a good brew of this style.

Photo of MDDMD
4.21/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

A-hazy brown color with hints of orange, nice off-white head with decent lacing

S-dark fruit, malt, caramel, spices, hint of orange

T-raisins, figs, toasted malt, toffee, spices, mild bitter finish

F-medium body with moderate carbonation, smooth and creamy

O-smooth and great flavor, solid ale

Photo of dogfishandi
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.

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

Finger-thick foam, bubbles taking their time, gauzy deep brown color with shades of burgundy and copper. Abundant Rorschach patches of lace...

Smells of strong malts, raisins, pervasive alcohol and faint milk-chocolate.

Excellent flavors: black licorice, peppery spice, caramel as it warms, all giving way to a serious dryness near the end of the sip. Would be a '5' if the alcohol weren't so out front, it dominates the flavors just a bit much.

Thinner mouthfeel than many other abbey doubles, still lively and pleasant.

Despite the very present alcohol in smell & taste, this goes down smooth enough. Having two or three in a row would never be out of the question. Because of the high presence of alcohol, it has a warming sensation as it goes down, making for great winter sipping.

Photo of bfred805
4.2/5  rDev +1%

Photo of Mosley1212
4.2/5  rDev +1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Taken from my notes. Poured from the bottle into my DFH Signature glass.

A—Ruby red with a touch of brown. Fluffy white head that dissipated quickly. Reminds me of the color of raisins.

S—Raisins, plums, dates, other dark fruits. Quite a bit of alcoholic burn in the nose also.

T—Warm raisin bread. Plums, dates, yeast, has a bit of a stinging alcohol taste.

M—Light bodied, heavy carbonation. Tastes fizzy like an Alka-Seltzer.

O—This is a solid brew from St. Bernardus, but I’m not overly impressed with this one.

Photo of BeccaH
4.2/5  rDev +1%

Photo of DrinkSlurm
4.2/5  rDev +1%

Photo of JohnofUpton
4.2/5  rDev +1%

St. Bernardus Prior 8 from Brouwerij St. Bernardus NV
93 out of 100 based on 1,984 ratings.