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!

Trappist Westvleteren 12 (XII) - Brouwerij Westvleteren (Sint-Sixtusabdij van Westvleteren)

Not Rated.
Trappist Westvleteren 12 (XII)Trappist Westvleteren 12 (XII)

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.

5,019 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 5,019
Reviews: 1,634
rAvg: 4.61
pDev: 9.33%
Wants: 3,025
Gots: 1,480 | FT: 107
Brewed by:
Brouwerij Westvleteren (Sint-Sixtusabdij van Westvleteren) visit their website

Style | ABV
Quadrupel (Quad) |  10.20% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes/Commercial Description:
(Yellow Cap)

(Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 11-12-2001)
View: Beers (3) | Events
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | Likes | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Trappist Westvleteren 12 (XII) Alström Bros
Ratings: 5,019 | Reviews: 1,634 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of SQNfan
4.53/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Deep mahogony in color this poured a thick fluffy beige head. The nose gave off complex scents of sweet dark fruit, raisins, dark malt, chocolate dipped toffee, yeast, mineral and dark caramel. In the mouth it was medium-bodied with nice concentration yet light-on-its-feet due to the abundance of carbonation. The mouthfeel is soft and round with good richness in the midpalate which adds some dry/bitterness on the finish. Balance is the key work here and it has that in spades!

Photo of Kanewai
5/5  rDev +8.5%

Photo of tsatem
4.83/5  rDev +4.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

12 oz. bottle at In De Vrede, in a chalice. Been dreaming of having this beer at this cafe for awhile.

A: Dark brown that lightens toward the edges. Frothy one and a half finger head with decent lacing immediately. A small layer stays suspended forever.

S: Huge cornucopia of dark fruits, candied figs, caramel, small esters, rather sweet. Sublimely balanced - it's really hard to pick anything out. Everything blends in an incredible way.

T: Full! So much, very rich. Rather sweet, a bit light. Alcohol presence has a great warming but not hot character. Some toasty grains. All the dark fruit is in there just like the nose. Wonderful Belgian yeast flavors. Just as well balanced as expected, everything blends to create a phenomenal flavor that seems unique in its complex unity.

M: Medium-heavy but still lively. Great.

O: Incredible! I don't know how much of that is the rare talking, but at the first sip I was blown away. Huge and bold, but still tame and so well balanced.

Photo of mmikey8
4.75/5  rDev +3%

Photo of ThinkRedEsq
5/5  rDev +8.5%

Photo of Therisse
4.05/5  rDev -12.1%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Look: Head was pretty consistant, cloudy body, very tiny bubbles, and a caramel color

Aroma: I smelled some copper, as well as bread, it had minerality to it, and hints of cocoa

Flavor: What stood out to me the most were the flavors of chocolate, plum, and bread. There was a sweetness that was somewhere between that of cane sugar and brown sugar. I also tasted hints of copper and cinnamon.

Mouth feel: Full body, bubbles were at a nice consistency.

Overall: Not a huge fan of Belgiums but this is a nice beer. Complex yet nicely balanced :)

Photo of Jimsal27
4.75/5  rDev +3%

Photo of sjjn
5/5  rDev +8.5%

Photo of hopoilcrazy
4.25/5  rDev -7.8%

Photo of jojox
5/5  rDev +8.5%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

It's finally time to review this beer. I'll be updating and changing as time goes on I think. I used to live in Paris and went to the Abbey 3 times with reservations, to buy cases. I had so much Westvleteren 12 at one point that I used a bottle to make a roast. Those were the days!

Bottle from batch February 12, 2008. Tasted March 25, 2009.

a - Dark brown. Not crystal clear. Thin, pale head. Fading but steady, islands of creamy bubbles sail down the whole way to the bottom of the glass when it's finally empty.

s - Malt. Caramel, alcohol, prunes, raisins. Strong smells. Complex sweetness-smells.

t - Wow. Dried fruits. Well carbonated. Alcohol/port bite is slight. It's not.. sweet, but malty, and yeah.. a little sweet. Deliciously sweet. This is awesome. This is the best malt profile ever. Belgain yeast creates a smooth, slightly estery aspect that perfectly marries the malt sweetness. It's difficult to say it's sweet because it's not cloying, at all. There is no hop character in the flavor, but clearly enough bittering to balance the rediculous malt profile.

m - creamy, well integrated CO2. Activity happening in the mouth but it's.. balanced.

d - In for a couple, but it's not a session beer due to the strength. But I could drink it 'till I passed out. Very Sad that it's over.

Note - Take a long time to drink this. Start it cold, and drink it slow enough that it's room temperature when it's done. That way you can experience all of the nuances.

My only perfect beer. There can be only one.

Photo of yottachem
4.75/5  rDev +3%

Photo of WilliamD
4.28/5  rDev -7.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured into a snifter. Murky amber-brown that lightens to a hazy gold near the top. A thin, cream colored head that remains. Leaves thick lacing around the glass above.
Smell is not intense. Raisins, plums, hint of banana. Slight floral aroma.
Very complex taste. Perhaps too much for my relatively uncultivated palate. I am probably not truly worthy of this beer. I am, however, appropriately humbled. I do know it's delicious. Raisins, bananas, little bit of booze. Nice, soft, leathery tone on the exhale.
Mouthfeel is crisp and slick with a very slight alcohol warming.
Alcohol presence is well-concealed. I have a few more bottles and would love another, but I must resist. If this wasn't as hard to come by as it is, I would have two more and call it a wonderful night.
Have a few more bottles and am looking forward to how this one tastes with age.

Photo of Scottz5
5/5  rDev +8.5%

Photo of BeerRay
4.5/5  rDev -2.4%

Photo of dannyhipps
5/5  rDev +8.5%

Photo of LostTraveler
5/5  rDev +8.5%

Photo of lalaloveyou
4.75/5  rDev +3%

Photo of belm001
4.75/5  rDev +3%

Photo of crosbyms
4.32/5  rDev -6.3%

Photo of sessycuban
5/5  rDev +8.5%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

33cl bottle received in a trade. Will likely be my last sampling outside of Belgium, in accordance with the wishes of the monks.

A- The beer pours a dark brownish read with very dense head. The head is off-white in color and dissipates slowly. The lacing was absolutely magnificent. Residual amounts of sediment.

S- I'm getting a lot of molasses, dried fruit, figs, and raisons. This is one of the few beers that deserves the label of complexity.

T- Absolutely delicious. It tastes of malt, plums, candi sugar, and an assortment of fruits. Truly a unique tasting experience.

M- Medium bodied, but very rich. This one is definitely a sipper. I wish I had paired it with food.

D- This beer could be paired with anything, or be enjoyed as an apperatif. This is an incredibly versatile beer. My only regret is not cellaring it for longer.

Photo of brokenleadedcask
4.7/5  rDev +2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Poured into Tulip

A- Poured lighter out of the bottle than in the glass. Good dense cloudy reddish brown nice frothy head

S- Raisin, apple, yeast, it's sweet & spicy

T- Beautiful, caramel, yeast, some hops, Biscuit

M- At first high and spicy carbonation, poured too cold. Then as it warms, nice & smooth with slight bitterness on the tongue

D- Really drinkable, not easy to get but nice balances of flavor and alcohol.

Overall: Must go to Belgium

Photo of adkirkish
4.45/5  rDev -3.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Thanks Phil for sharing!!

A: poured (chill haze), dark armber, thin foamy light tan head, slow dissipation with excellent lacing.

A: Light aroma w/ toffee and caramel, no hop aroma, belgian yeast aromatics.

F: Toffee, tropical fruit : melon, caramel malt. Flavors are perfectly complementory

M: Light in mouthfeel and body, finishes light on the palate, almost like a 'whispering finish' / medium carbonation. Drinks very smooth on the palate. No alcohol warmth.

O: To be a quad, I think this needed a little more oomph. Not as viscous as I would have thought a quad to resemble to style, but yet still delicious.

Photo of sarro
4.7/5  rDev +2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

2006 bottle shared by Weisguy.
Pours a super syrupy brown with nearly zero head on a careful pour. Smells very bready along with nuts and dark fruit. The taste is delicate brown sugar malt with several layers of sweetness. I pickup lots of belgian dark sugar and it reminds me a bit of a well aged barleywine, but not as thick or heavy. The mouthfeel is slick and a tad syrupy with a nice medium carbonation. Mild alchohol finish on it, but I loved it.
Leaps and bounds better than the first Westy 12 I had that was full of sediment and aged on its side.

Photo of Crunkle
4.75/5  rDev +3%

Photo of ekardz
3.75/5  rDev -18.7%

Trappist Westvleteren 12 (XII) from Brouwerij Westvleteren (Sint-Sixtusabdij van Westvleteren)
100 out of 100 based on 5,019 ratings.