Trappist Westvleteren 12 (XII) - Brouwerij Westvleteren (Sint-Sixtusabdij van Westvleteren)
Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
Ratings: 3,919 | Reviews: 1,569 | Show All Ratings:
Reviews by brystmar:
4.88/5 rDev +5.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5
Cap date 09.03.12, so it’s ~3 years old. Opened as part of a 4-way blind(!) taste test with Abt 12, Rochefort 10, and Malheur 12. Thanks to Sarah for administering!
Hazy, deep brown pour yields one to two fingers of head with stubborn retention. The four of us participating all remarked on its aroma when smelling the (unbeknownst to us) Westy for the first time. It holds layers upon layers of complexity that the others simply couldn’t match.
The term "bready" is often thrown around, but Westy 12 actually smells like a freshly baked loaf of bread. Surprisingly strong caramel character too with a more tame spiciness than the others. As stated, we all agreed that this was the best aroma of the bunch.
Extremely complex flavor profile without an over-reliance on the style’s traditional spice characteristics. Tons of caramel (again) atop an already intriguing set of flavors. Bready. Significantly more interesting than the others. Finishes slightly sweet with lingering caramel amidst the boozy warmth.
Westy 12 sports a fuller body than its peers; noticeably more luscious and creamy than the others. Plenty of carbonation, but not too much.
Despite everything I've written, I can't drink this the way I do stouts or sours. It's become grueling for me to drink a Belgian these days, though this is certainly my favorite non-sour Belgian. The monks at Westvleteren deserve the hype they’ve earned over the years. Not the best beer in the world, but I'm rating to style and this is unquestionably the best Belgian Quad in the world -- particularly with a few years of age. I've since had Westy 12 fresh and, while it was still great, it couldn't compare to this ~3-year-old bottle.
...and in case you're wondering, my order of preference ended up being: Westy 12, Malheur 12, Abt 12, and finally Rochefort 10. Cheers!
Serving type: bottle
02-13-2012 06:13:42 | More by brystmar
More User Reviews:
4.99/5 rDev +8%
look: 4.75 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5
Pretty much the perfect Belgian Quad. Doing two seperate blind tastings with this Abt 12 and Rochefort 10 this came out on top both times. I wish I had more of them to really savior and notice the subtle differences between all three. This is great fresh and with some age on it. I have one that is now three years old and will be opening later this year.
Poured with almost a 2 finger head into a Westy glass.
Smell is that of a Belgian Quad with a little bit less sweetness to it and a little bit more spice.
Both taste and mouthfeel live up to the hype. Little bit more spice to go with the fruits and sugars. Taste opens up more as it warms up.
Serving type: bottle
03-06-2014 21:43:40 | More by ShaneGoodhew
4.65/5 rDev +0.6%
look: 2.75 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5
Bottle cap is dated: 10.11.14
Very large snappy, soapy, tan colored head. poor retention. Brew is deep red with lots of brown. Good clarity too. No lacing. Thin.
Tons of smooth clove, lots of spice, but not over the top. Heavenly smooth butter cream on the nose. Not sugary. I could Sniff this for quite sometime... Great raisins. Very-very mild "Belgian Banana".
Nearly distracting amount of carbonation. Large amount of bubbles. Great fluidity and heavenly drinkability. Slightly lighter and thinner than I had imagined it would be. SLIGHT rubber aftertaste on the very tail end. Sweetness is light, crisp, airy, and solid. I would prefer a bit more body and a little less fluid. Cloves are strong robust, crisp, airy. Not a banana bomb... Nice smooth dry bitter finish.
IMO, this beer delivered the hype; it's one of the few. It's not mind altering, but very solid and well rounded. *Nearly* perfect for the style. I would have enjoyed a bit stronger appearance, more forward flavoring, thicker body, and more creamy head. Definitely recommended.
Serving type: bottle
03-04-2014 03:24:36 | More by chugalug06
4.9/5 rDev +6.1%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5
very healthy, medium consistency foam head from pour. tan and billowy, not level. head clinging to the sides as it recedes, sediment settled on top. dark mahogany color.
smell is not strong, but there does seem to be some dark fruit aroma. otherwise nothing to smell(?).
taste catches my attention right away. dark fruit. alcohol. plums. fig. malt. toffee.
2nd pour yields a more level, creamy head.
what's missing in this (and preferably) is the rich Belgian yeast that is so prevalent in most all the Belgian brews. even the St. Bernardus has ample amounts of the rich yeasty flavor which I grew to love and then over indulge in to the point of staying away from the Belgians for quite a while. but this does not have that overpowering yeast and richness.
slathering it down the back of my throat I can taste the toffee and malt and syrup qualities. this is genuinely an incredible brew. I try not to let the rarity of it influence my perception but I am very enamored with this, and the other two (8 and blonde) I have tried. the alcohol burn is not an unpleasant one. it actually is very smooth and delicious.
I gave this excellent ratings. only the smell is lower due to the fact I cannot smell much, but that alone is also a great quality-nothing overpowering, ya know? I realize I gave the st. bernardus a higher rating but that was back when I was less refined and experienced and I was blown away with the beer. I haven't had a st bernardus in a while, and maybe it's time to try one (maybe side by side with the west12?) but from memory, this is a smoother, more stable, taste and I really think this is better in my opinion.
Serving type: bottle
03-02-2014 21:23:13 | More by pkalix
Trappist Westvleteren 12 (XII) from Brouwerij Westvleteren (Sint-Sixtusabdij van Westvleteren)
100 out of 100 based on 3,919 ratings.