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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.

4,868 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 4,868
Reviews: 1,624
rAvg: 4.61
pDev: 8.89%
Wants: 2,949
Gots: 1,407 | FT: 108
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)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Usefulness | Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Trappist Westvleteren 12 (XII) Alström Bros
Ratings: 4,868 | Reviews: 1,624 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of ciaomonaco
4.97/5  rDev +7.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

The experience of drinking a living legend is unique and one that is obviously better experienced than translated into language, however the latter is possible, to an extent.

The word that best describes this beer - pleasurable. This beer strikes the balance of sweet and beer so perfectly, it literally brought a smile to my face. It is sweet on the front end of the experience with a slightly bitter finish. The mouthfeel is heavy, it turns into thick cream as you swish it around your mouth. There are hints of raisins and plums that give the beer a rich sweetness, that is surely balanced by some mild hoppiness. Heavy carbonation, slightly cloudy, a light head.

There is a mythical experience that comes with drinking Westvleteren 12 that cannot be understood unless one drinks it.

ciaomonaco, Jan 30, 2012
Photo of jfcaa193
4.5/5  rDev -2.4%

jfcaa193, Jan 30, 2012
Photo of groetman
4/5  rDev -13.2%

groetman, Jan 29, 2012
Photo of Adamdc
4.5/5  rDev -2.4%

Adamdc, Jan 29, 2012
Photo of Hawkfish
4.97/5  rDev +7.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Drank this last Christmas Eve after service.

Smelled of dark fruits, dark bread, leather, and cherries.

Some sediment, but who cares, it's the 12!

Malty but finishes dry, sweet like dark candi sugar, spicy, caramel, dark fruit, mild coffee.

Tight bubbles in carbonation.

Prefer the Younger as my top beer, but this rocks. Can't wait to try this one day fresh at the Abbey.

Hawkfish, Jan 29, 2012
Photo of AndyAvalanche
4.85/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Well I figured I'd make this review count, and get a little cocky and review it before the distribution to the US actually does happen in the Spring of 2012.

12 oz. bottle poured into a Leffe chalice. The cap indicates 16-06-13 as what I would assume is the best bye date. Popped the cap and a small amount of foam started to ball up at the top, waited a minute or 2 for the pour. Sort of a brown dirty water color in the liquid but darker, slightly darker than cider. There is quite a bit of setiment floating around in there, saved a little at the bottom of the bottle so there wasn't too much, but I think it's unavoidable, no big deal. Looks pretty good. Like many Belgian styles, there is a decent sized foamy head, mostly small bubbles but slightly varies. The head is slightly darker than off white. Good looking beer, I wouldn't say it's the best looking beer I've ever seen (even for the style), but you can tell it's quality.

Took my first sniff from the bottle before I poured it and I couldn't believe how good it smelled; it sort of went away, but it was hoppier than I expected. However the more I smell it, I think it's just it's the fruitiness from the other ingredients. Dark fruits come out, plumb, crushed apples, pears, even cherries. Subtle tropical fruits too. Also hints of mild chocolate and maybe even some coffee. None of those gross banana-like aromas that often apply in many Belgian styles. This is all good all the way. My ONLY knock on this is that it's not that strong, decisive, but nothing not that strong, so I'd give it a 4.75 if possible, but this will do.

Taste is truly outstanding and now I understand the hype. I'm not traditionally one to prefer Belgian style brews to others, but Quads were what I like the most of them all and now I totally understand the hype. All the aromas come out in the flavor here. Very malty and fruity ( I don't feel like typing all the fruits again, so read above). Subtle chocolate again, but a little more bitter this time, slight coffee too. Perfectly balanced between bitter and sweet. I'm not overly versed in the Quad style, but this is worthy of being the standard of how this beer should taste.

Mouthfeel is perfect, plain and simple. Huge, full flavor while feeling soft and delicate. Great carbonation level and the yeast doesn't leave that ,well "yeasty" feeling in your mouth, it's very smooth. The 10.2% is WELL hidden in the mouthfeel and the flavor, I NEVER would have guessed that if I didn't know. Crazy drinkable too. This is just an all around wonderful beer all around, absolutely happy to have tried it; maybe I'll get the opportunity again. If more Quads tasted like this, it could be my favorite style.

Huge props to dbexpert, you're the man, thanks a ton for the trade!

AndyAvalanche, Jan 28, 2012
Photo of bark
4.9/5  rDev +6.3%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Unknown vintage, although I think it is quite fresh.

The colour is brown, the liquid a bit cloudy. The low head is off-white, it leaves some nice lacing.

The smell got a distinct note of sponge-cake dough. Sweet Champagne. Red berries. It is very smooth.

The taste is first enormously sweet. Then, fruity jam flavours kicks in. Smooth hoppy-hayish notes with very low bitterness. Wheat flour. Some toffee. The aftertaste is tremendously smooth with fruits and herbs in the finish.

The carbonation is fresh, the bubbles are small. The liquid is smooth and a bit dry.

One of the best beers in the world? I was a bit nervous before tasting it, but it didn’t disappoint me: One of the smoothest and most balanced beers I have had, with a distinct note of Raspberry Swiss roll.

bark, Jan 28, 2012
Photo of Gfunk720
4/5  rDev -13.2%

Gfunk720, Jan 27, 2012
Photo of spdyfire83
4.65/5  rDev +0.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

130th Review
Bottle to Westvletren 12 (small) chalice - as it should be!

From notes. I have enjoyed this beer several times, but this review was as a result of my encounter with it as beer #4 enjoyed as part of a blind Quad tasting - to warm our palates before the real tasting - in Utrecht (December 2011). Thanks Jeffo and doopiedoopiedoo for the hospitality!

A: Burnt brown. Single (tan) fingernail head on Jeffo's pour - I was being honest.

S: Holy smokes. I knew what is was from first sniff, but gosh it doesn't get much better than this! Complex. Dark fruits, caramel, hint of vanilla, cloves, and a touch of heaven. At least I can only hope.

T: Much like the smell, but very, very smooth. Brown sugar, dark fruit, and nice balance of spice. Not overly complex, but just right!

M: Medium bodied and perfect carbonation here.

O: Stand ovation on this and it will never stopping amazing me - the monks of Westvleteren sure know how to brew an excellent beer! You can enjoy a "fresh" bottle or a vintage bottle and the result will always be the same - outstanding! It does age quite well too, but I think this bottle was a bit more fresh. Either way, it is definitely something any beer drinkers out there should have the experience of enjoying (even if you don't like the style). I converted to appreciate the Belgian Quad as a result of my first encounter with this beer.

spdyfire83, Jan 27, 2012
Photo of NaNach
5/5  rDev +8.5%

NaNach, Jan 27, 2012
Photo of KotR
4.5/5  rDev -2.4%

KotR, Jan 27, 2012
Photo of Sender
3.75/5  rDev -18.7%

Sender, Jan 27, 2012
Photo of NORM4
5/5  rDev +8.5%

NORM4, Jan 26, 2012
Photo of raverjames
5/5  rDev +8.5%

raverjames, Jan 25, 2012
Photo of beast464
4.5/5  rDev -2.4%

beast464, Jan 25, 2012
Photo of mjtiernan
4.55/5  rDev -1.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Thanks to auroracrisis for sending me this!

33cl bottle best by dated 03.13.13 poured into a tulip

A: Very carbonated. Pours a deep reddish brown. A complex spider web of lacing.

S: Belgian yeast unlike others that I’ve smelled. Red grapes, raisins, and a small amount of caramel.

T: Loaded with flavor. The yeast really stands out. I’m going to pour it all in. Yum! Dark fruit and chocolate. Pretty sweet. Lots going on. The finish is pretty hot...lots of alcohol. Enough analyzing...I’m going to slow down and enjoy this.

M: The alcohol burn keeps me from rushing through this (which is good) but it hurts drinkability a bit. Carbonation was more than I expected, but I’m enjoying it.

O: So glad I got to try the great Westy 12. It’s interesting to think about everything that went into making this. I’d like to try another one with some more time on it. Hope I get another chance to try it again. Next time I'll opt for a chalice instead of a tulip.

mjtiernan, Jan 24, 2012
Photo of nicholas527
3/5  rDev -34.9%

nicholas527, Jan 22, 2012
Photo of Momar42
5/5  rDev +8.5%

Momar42, Jan 22, 2012
Photo of dbossman
4.58/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A: Cloudy oak colored with a thin film of a head and a thin film of lacing

S: Wow, dark fruits: figs, plums, raisins, and cherries and lots of grapes (I actually had my 4-year-old daughter smell the beer and without prompting she said it smelled like "grapes, lots of red grapes")--quite vinous almost like a semi-sweet red wine; also a bit oaky; wow, I am excited for this

T: Sweet and malty; dark fruits and cherries and grapes; man, this is vinous and woody and fantastic

F: Medium mouth feel with subtle but pleasant carbonation--creamy, yeasty

O: Such a wonderful beer; sweet but not cloying, dark fruits, grapes, and delicious

dbossman, Jan 22, 2012
Photo of Jakers90
4.5/5  rDev -2.4%

Jakers90, Jan 22, 2012
Photo of samEBC
4.5/5  rDev -2.4%

samEBC, Jan 21, 2012
Photo of djb277
5/5  rDev +8.5%

djb277, Jan 21, 2012
Photo of birchstick
4.47/5  rDev -3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Big thanks to Brabander for the opportunity!

A - pours a caramelly brown with a billowing head that slow dissipates to nothing

S - lots of dark fruits, figs, raisins, and brown sugar

T - starts off with caramel malt and brown sugars. These fade to a lot of dark fruits and some Belgian yeast spiciness. Come chocolaty toasted malt comes through on the finish, and leaves fruits lingering on the tongue. Really nice complexity.

M - a little spritzy with a nice body; the abv is well hidden.

D - Solid quad, really nice complexity and balance between the sweetness, fruits, and malts. Definitely worth the trouble of getting for the experience!

birchstick, Jan 21, 2012
Photo of pword9d8
4.5/5  rDev -2.4%

pword9d8, Jan 20, 2012
Photo of ryantastad
4.5/5  rDev -2.4%

ryantastad, Jan 19, 2012
Trappist Westvleteren 12 (XII) from Brouwerij Westvleteren (Sint-Sixtusabdij van Westvleteren)
100 out of 100 based on 4,868 ratings.