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.

5,016 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 5,016
Reviews: 1,634
rAvg: 4.61
pDev: 9.33%
Wants: 3,022
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: 5,016 | Reviews: 1,634 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of gorby10826
4.5/5  rDev -2.4%

Photo of Lee45102
5/5  rDev +8.5%

Photo of Chriscrundwell12
4.72/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

12 oz bottle sharred with my two brothers.

Cap Date: 07/01/14

A- Pours a 1 ½ finger tan head that dissipates slowly, really nice lacing, dark dark brown color, burnt orange hues coming off the bottom, really attractive beer.
S- Beautiful aroma, sweet dark fruit aroma coming out right away, Plums, raisins, brown sugar, caramel, toffee, really complex aroma.
T- Wow, this is Incredibly smooth, brown sugar and toffee come out a lot stronger in the taste than the aroma, dark fruits come out in the background, plums, raisins just like the nose, again really smooth and easy drinking, the abv is nowhere to be seen.
M- Medium mouth feel, incredibly smooth drinking, clean finish, coats the palate, well carbonated.
O- I have had this on numerous occasions and I always forget to review it. This bottle really surprised me compared to the past bottles I’ve had, incredibly smooth, and well balanced. World class beer, very impressive.

Photo of Crundy
4.88/5  rDev +5.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

A: Very dark, dark amber red where light gets through, tan colored head, good amount of carbonation present

S: Heavy dark fruit smell, raisins and plums, caramel roasted malt, slight astringency

T: Caramel roasted malt, brown sugar, sweet dark fruits,

M: very smooth, more mellow flavor, it was sweet with a touch of bitterness towards the end. Slight twinge from the alcohol but I could hardly taste the 10.2%.

O: Very drinkable, very good beer. The best Trappist beer I've had yet. the flavors, while mellow, are blended perfectly and leave a pleasant aftertaste. Kudos to the monks on a superb beer.

Photo of scottyg354
4.9/5  rDev +6.3%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

A: Pours a deep mahogony. Nice 2 finger head that is slightly off white. Beautiful bubbling carbonation. Lacing all the way through.

S: Breads, Dried Fruits and I got a yogurt type smell out of this as well. Really,for the complexity of this beer, the nose really wasn't as wonderful as I thought it would be.

T: Bready and Fruit. (Fig's, Raisin's , Plum's). Caramel notes linger in the back end with banana and mild bubble gum. Candied sugar is evident as well. For the strength there is no booziness what so ever. Complexity at it's best.

M: Nice carbonation on this beer. Smooth and slightly chewy.Really great.

O: There is a reason this beer is constantly battling for the number 1 spot.

Photo of kscaldef
3.98/5  rDev -13.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Christmas Day beer :-)

A: Good pop of carbonation opening the bottle. Appealing garnet color in the light. Minimal, loose, irregular head.

S: Candy, brown sugar, strawberry. Mild fusels, raisin.

T: Date, raisin, fig. Bready malts. Candied orange and cherry. Mild phenolic finish.

M: High carbonation, a bit prickly. Finishes a little too clean; carbonation is scouring too much of the flavor. After about 15 minutes, the beer seems to have gotten some of the carbonation out of it's system and it's a lot more pleasant, although the body seems a bit light and I'd like more linger.

O: Is this one of those cases of unrealistic expectations? I'm not sure. The excessive carbonation definitely takes this bottle down a notch for me, as the first half was almost impossible to taste. But beyond that, I'd say this is a nice, but not amazing beer. I'm curious to see if it's substantially different on tap when I have a chance to visit Belgium next spring.

Photo of bfields4
4.5/5  rDev -2.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours a very viscous frothy head. Dark amber caramel color.

Very strong aroma. Sweet malty aroma. Rasins, figs, plumbs are nicely complimented by lemon zest and Belgian fruity yeast aroma.

Toffee caramel malts good dark fruit flavor. Blast of various spices from cinnamon to nutmeg maybe even a hint of clove. Sweet candy sugar and a light citrus note here and there.

Chewy but nice and light with the good carbonation. Little bit of an alcohol burn. Very complex delicious beer. I can understand the hype.

Photo of tedho21
5/5  rDev +8.5%

Photo of Erzengel
3.28/5  rDev -28.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Best before 16.06.2013
Bought 1½ years ago directly at the abbey and stored since then in my cellar. Reviewed in direct comparison to the Rochefort 10.

The beer starts relatively bitter with hints of malt and dark fruit. Very sweet, nearly clammy, no sign of the 10,2%.
The aroma of dark dried plums get lost in the sugary sweetness, which makes the beer very drinkable, but also very monotone. It is in my opinion even boring in comparison to the blast of aroma of the Rochefort 10.

The aftertaste is dominated by the brown sugar and the hop-bitterness, which remind me of our German Oettinger Malz, only a bit richer. But nearly no sign of herbal flavours like the Rochefort 10.

--> If I'll be at the Belgium coast on vacation next year, I'll again buy a crate, but for me this beer is not worth any effort! Very disappointing and absolutely overrated!!

Photo of Catchy_Name
4/5  rDev -13.2%

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

A: Pours a watery brown with a think white head that quickly fades. All thats left after a few minutes is a ring around the beer.

S: The beer is pretty calm. I am picking up some dark fruit, like figs or raisins. Maybe I am crazy, but I also get a bit of banana in there.

T: Now this is where the beer deserves to be considered the greatest beer in the world. There is a nice amount of dark fruit with some malt and a good amount of sweetness. I am also getting a tiny bit of banana. Really tastes more like a 4% beer and not 10.2%.

M: This is the perfect mouthfeel to me. It is so smooth and easy to drink. There is a tiny amount of crispness that tingles the tongue, but other than that it goes down like water. Cant ask for anything better.

O: If I could give this beer a 6 out of 5 I would. It just doesn't get much better than this and I wish it was easier to find, but I cant complain too much because I was lucky to get one thanks to my wife. Just amazing!

Photo of Skagbaron
4.75/5  rDev +3%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Received a bottle of this 'mythologic' trappist beer when a great friend (thanks, Dre!) visited the Abbey of Saint Sixtus.

Served from a chilled bottle, with the smoking gun when opened, and poured into a goblet.

Poured a even dark brown color with 2 centimeters of tan/brown large foamy bubble head, that slowly disappeared to thin wisps but re-emerged with agitation. Beautiful micro-bubble carbonation like a Guiness commercial.

Smell is surprisingly subdued, malty and caramel tones. Smell returns with a nasal flux following sipping.

Taste is a mild blend of figgy, caramel, malt flavors. Some clove and bread in there. Hop bitterness is notably absent. Strong alcohol content is almost hidden. Aftertaste is more of the same with a smooth decay.

Mouthfeel is smooth and pleasant, and made more robust by the lingering aftertaste.

Overall, an impressive blend of flavors and subdued notes. Like an artist's palate. High abv makes the repeated drinkability low beyond savoring a few in celebration. Awesome overall. No hype here.

Photo of Rutager
4.75/5  rDev +3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Appearance. Pours a deep, hazy brown with a little orangey-red. Nice two+ fingers of tan, foamy head that lasts a while and leaves some pretty lacing. Some suspended dark particles.

Smell. Dark cherries and plums, light belgian yeast, brown sugar, some caramel malt.

Taste. Cherries, pears, brown sugar, just a little booze. Really smooth with many subtle, complex flavours.

Mouthfeel. Medium-full body with medium+, smooth carbonation.

Overall. Just a fantastic quad. So smooth and nice subtle flavours, yet complex.

Photo of Genghis22
4.5/5  rDev -2.4%

Photo of Harkrank
5/5  rDev +8.5%

Photo of clegolfski
5/5  rDev +8.5%

Photo of PhatAtUT
4.5/5  rDev -2.4%

Photo of fistfight
5/5  rDev +8.5%

Photo of jakesingleton
5/5  rDev +8.5%

Photo of WillCarrera
4.63/5  rDev +0.4%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

Picked up a bottle from Bier Tempel in Bruges, the bottle was from one of those special six packs that the monks released in Belgium this November to raise funds for renovations on the abbey. Has the Latin phrase "Ad aedificandam abbatiam adiuvi," which means "I helped to build the abbey" on the bottle as well as a pretty dramatic "Westvleteren XII" label. Has a best before date of 31.08.14 on the cap. Poured into a Westvleteren chalice.

A- Pours a dark brown with ruby highlights, produces a thin layer of tan head, bubbles down to a ring around the edge of the glass.

S- The aroma is massive, a delicious blend of fruit (raisins, figs, dates) some phenol with licorice and caramel, spice, and moist bready malt with brown sugar.

T- Similar to the nose, with big dark fruit flavors as well as spice. Malts are big and moist, lots of caramel and bread pudding. Alcohol is warm and spicy with some clove and phenol and licorice.

M- Medium bodied, solid carbonation with a smooth, creamy feel.

O- An amazing beer, its reputation really is well deserved. One of the best beer's I've ever tasted.

Photo of Josiah2729
4.5/5  rDev -2.4%

Photo of eypmcfg
4.9/5  rDev +6.3%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Having read of this great beer for years, and coming to the understanding that it was not available, I set out a course to get some. Having been to Roquefort, and had 10, I was anxious to taste a beer that was supposed to be better than that.

Once landing in Amsterdam, it is a 3 hour drive to Westvleteren. The town is on the western edge of Belgium very near France. Having stopped at a few other breweries along the way, we arrived in Westvleteren at 4:45, and the shop closes at 5:00. A very kind person, who we asked for direction to the abbey, simply led us there, and we arrived at 4:55. We rushed into the small shop and asked for a case of 12, it was May; the Monk looked at me and said, "We will have 12 in August". Aghhh – So I bought a case of 8.

The Monks prohibit resale of any kind, but they have built a restaurant across the dirt road from the Abbey. In there I had my first 12. As I peered at it I realized that it had the same polish in the glass as fine wine, this is unlike anything I have ever seen. The aroma is rich and layered simply lovely, but not as fine as Roquefort 10. Unlike 10, with its amorphous head, the head on 12 is relatively thin and smooth. The taste was pure heaven. Smooth, Rich, the mouthfeel was thick and glorious. The flavor is complex in nature, like other great beers, the flavor morphs as it warms up and this is an awesome thing to experience. The 13% ABV is awesome, and well hidden. The flavor lingered for a long time on the palate, allowing a glass to be savored, thank God -

I checked a case in a roller bag - none broke – The Monks use good glass.

Photo of NFStaproom
4.5/5  rDev -2.4%

Photo of CelticAleMan
4.25/5  rDev -7.8%

Photo of deesfrank
5/5  rDev +8.5%

Trappist Westvleteren 12 (XII) from Brouwerij Westvleteren (Sint-Sixtusabdij van Westvleteren)
100 out of 100 based on 5,016 ratings.