Trappist Westvleteren 12 (XII) - Brouwerij Westvleteren (Sint-Sixtusabdij van Westvleteren)
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Ratings: 4,469 | Reviews: 1,603 | Display Reviews Only:
Reviews by BedetheVenerable:
4.43/5 rDev -3.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5
HUGE thank-you to frissianwits for this one...the generosity blew me away.
Presentation: Classic Westy 330ml brown pop top with no label; cap says 27.05.13
Appearance: Murky walnut beer with a light beige cap with good retention.
Smell: Spicy, sweet, and beguiling...there are a host of different spices here, but everything is so well-integrated I'm having a tough time pulling them all out...I do get a definite hit of cinnamon sugar, however. There's lots of fruit as well, and more light fruit (apricot, maybe?) than I was expecting...some very light booze as well, and I'm getting sugared dates now as this warms a bit.
Taste: This courses across the palate, constantly changing and showing a new side. It starts out with burnt caramel, toasty malts (like an amped-up Munich Dunkel), some light minerality, and some dark fruit...cotton candy makes its presence known as well, as well as various sweet baking spices...there's a bit more bitterness than I was expecting, though there's no real hop flavor. The bitterness is actually just a bit stronger than I'd like. Eventually apple and other light fruit make their way forward, as well as mild alcohol as this warms. In a word, complex.
Mouthfeel: Fairly high carbonation levels, but remarkably light for the high abv, which keeps the drinkability...
Drinkability: High...though it's so complex, it begs to be mused over...so complex you just want another taste, and it'd be easy to drink more than the 1-2 of these that you could have without starting to get goofy
Conclusion: Was it the earth-shattering, worldview-changing epiphany I was awaiting? No. But I don't think a beer that's this hyped could *ever* meet expectations. That being said, it was by FAR the best Belgian Strong Dark Ale/Quadrupel I've ever had. I think if the bitterness had been just slightly less, this would have been an A+. Better than Chimay's Blue and Rochefort's 10 w/out question (though those are both delicious beers; I haven't tried Achel's Extra yet, so I can't comment on it). I would love (someday) to have 3-4 of these so I could drink 1 a year or so and see how they change. I broke this open to celebrate passing my MA defense that day; again, thanks to frissianwits, I cannot think of a better way to have celebrated.
Serving type: bottle
07-20-2010 21:47:02 | More by BedetheVenerable
More User Reviews:
Trappist Westvleteren 12 (XII) from Brouwerij Westvleteren (Sint-Sixtusabdij van Westvleteren)
100 out of 100 based on 4,469 ratings.