Trappist Westvleteren Blonde - Brouwerij Westvleteren (Sint-Sixtusabdij van Westvleteren)

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Trappist Westvleteren BlondeTrappist Westvleteren Blonde

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BA SCORE
95
world-class

730 Ratings
THE BROS
80
good

(view ratings)
Ratings: 730
Reviews: 412
rAvg: 4.26
pDev: 10.33%
Wants: 411
Gots: 104 | FT: 2
Brewed by:
Brouwerij Westvleteren (Sint-Sixtusabdij van Westvleteren) visit their website
Belgium

Style | ABV
Belgian Pale Ale |  5.80% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes/Commercial Description:
(Green Cap)

(Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 03-23-2002)
View: Beers (3) | Events
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 730 | Reviews: 412 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of GClarkage
4.3/5  rDev +0.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

06/30/07- Had at a tasting at BA member Talisker's apt.

Presentation- 11.2oz no labeled bottle. A best by '09 on the cap. Does that mean a 2002 bottling date or 2004? I forget if it's 5 or 7 years from the date. Poured into my Westvleteren chalice.

Appearance- Deep blonde in color, almost looks like liquid honey. Light bubbled creamy white 1/2 inch head. Lovely stream of bubbles rises from the bottom of the glass. Light traces of lace remain at the finish of the brew.

Smell- Really had to sniff to bring out the nose. Lightly yeasty with a bit of lemon peel and some caramel notes.

Taste- A nice wide array of flavors here. Wonderful bready yeast notes with a subtle caramel malt flavor. Lightly spiced with corriander and citrus peel. Almost a tea like herb flavor as well.

Mouthfeel- Perfect middle range carbonation level. Seems just a touch watery, but very smooth and creamy going down on the swallow.

Drinkability- Damn, this would be one hell of a session beer, wouldn't it? Don't see that happening anytime soon though. Great mild tasting beer, but with very nice flavors. Very drinkable.

Photo of FloridaDrinker
4.58/5  rDev +7.5%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured a hazy light gold with a thick two finger head. The aroma was incredible, banana, citrus and malt with a peppery spice note filled the chalice. I ended up sticking the end of my nose in the beer (c'mon, admit it, you've done it once or twice, right?).

The taste was very complex, with grain and malt flavors balanced by sharp lemon, banana and pepper. The finish was lemon and spice fading into a lingering hop bitterness. Mouthfeel was excellent, a soft, creamy texture that was finally overcome by the dry finish.

Believe the hype - the beers of Westvleteren are in a class of their own.

Photo of Boto
4.47/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

33cl. bottle: Got this with the 12 & 8 that I bought from Belgian Shop. Hadn’t read the reviews, so I wasn’t sure what to expect. This beer pours a hazy golden color, with a small white head. Has quite a bit of hops in the nose and taste, but not over the top. Very well balanced. Dry finish. Certainly different from the 8 and 12, but still very good. How can I join the Abbey?

Photo of SilentSabre
3.98/5  rDev -6.6%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottle as pictured with no label and green cap. "10.01.14" ink jetted across the top. Poured very cloudy with quite alot of yeast sediment/deris floating about. As anyone who has read more than a handful of my reviews will know, I am very fond of sediment and chunky debris, as long as it's appropriate to the style, of course. This is quite a nice looking Belgian Pale, but nothing too extraordinary. The head is white and while not very thick, what head *is* there, seems to be staying around for some time.
Smell is absolutely fantastic! Huge, un-mistakable aroma of honey.
There is, of course, a bit of a yeasty element, as well, and a touch of light lemon hiding in the back.
The taste had a bitterness to it that I wasn't anticipating. I didn't find it offensive, I simply wasn't expecting it based on how sweet the smell was. The honey in the smell had me thinking, (and hoping) this would be sweeter than it was. Taste was sweet for a split second, and then turned quickly to bitter hops, then turned pleasantly dry on the finish. Mouthfeel was nice and smooth and very easy to drink. Good? Certainly. Live up to the Westy hype? Not this one. Perhaps Yellow cap, but to date I have not had it.

Photo of dmbfrat420beers
4.47/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pale, moderately hazy, straw color with a slight orange tinge. Moderately dense white head of small bubble. Very nice. Decent lacing on the glass. Aroma is crisp, slightly musty, with notes of lemon. Wheaty (not sure if this is made with wheat or not), yeasty, and citrusy flavor up front that gives way to grapefruit and an actually quite bitter, hoppy aftertaste that lingers nicely on the lips. Rich and complex. Big carbonation and body, and quite refreshing. Imminently drinkable.

Overall, a very nice example of a Belgian Pale – yeasty, hoppy, and flavorful. It’s difficult not to rave about this brewery.

Photo of
4/5  rDev -6.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

12oz. bottle.

Hazy, pale yellow in color. Large, creamy white head. Lot of carb. action going on.

A recognizable Belgian aroma greets you upon lifting the glass. Coriander and other spices are present, along with a bit of citrus. Some floral notes are in there as well.

Taste is sweet more than bitter, maybe watered down honey as the primary "sweetner". Nicely balanced though, and seems more hoppy than your average Belgian. Floral and grassy notes float around, covered in those spices you get in the nose. Just a bit of pepper at the finish.

Very light in body. Medium + carbonation -- very peppy. Not too dry, and very refreshing.

A great summer/session beer. Fairly complex flavor profile for that type of beer. Incredibly easy to drink.

Photo of bennetj17
3.48/5  rDev -18.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Received from Prufrock in No-BS BIF. Pale/dull yellow color with high clarity and light wispy foam. The aroma is mild with notes of citrus melon, and coriander spice all with a lightly sweet bready character.

More bready malt in the taste with a hint of lemon zest and a faint sourness. Finishes with a light dryness, mildly bitter, with a touch of oxidation. The light body is softly carbonated, very average.

I wasn't too impressed by this Trappist Ale. Worth a try, but doesn't live up to the name expectations...

Photo of cypressbob
4.33/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

330ml bottle (no label, trappistenbier round the neck), poured into an 't IJ brewery tulip

I sampled the 12 a long time ago and thought it was pretty damn good, then two summers ago I had the 8 in Cafe Gollem and it was truly fantastic.... hopefully the Blond will live up to expectations. Its about £25 on a few UK beersites so I'm ever indebted to mdagnew for this section of beer perfection

Pours with a very light amber body, slightly hazy. Thick as hell egg white head with great retention. Massive inch thick head sticks around for ages along with massive strands of lacing all up and down the glass

Smell, fresh slightly dry yeast character, some fresh ripe fruit (melon, banana and peach), some almost phenollic pear aroma, slight whiff of dry alcohol

Taste, crisp and nice and dry mouthfeel, thick belgian yeast character. Some super hopped belgian pale ale, a little hint of lavender and fresh thyme. Nice and crisp peppery mouthfeel along with a little bit of fresh nutty fruit.

The baby of the Westvleteren family. That said, full of flavour, lots of fruity dry yeasty character

Photo of Padron4KM
4.58/5  rDev +7.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

330 ml brown bottle. Gift from a friend.

Hazy golden with a thin but lasting head. Streams of tiny champagne like bubbles rise from various parts of the glass.

Sweet citrus nose, lightly floral, maybe some apple. Delicate yet complex.

Flavor is citrusy, doughy, a little spicy, a little sweet. Leaves a tingle on the lips.

Finish is long and refreshingly bitter with a sweet fruitiness rolled up inside. I could still taste it more than 20 min after finishing the glass.

I wish I had more.

Photo of Westsidethreat
3.53/5  rDev -17.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Thanks to JeffKrenner for this beer

A: Dull lemon meringue color with hay aspects. Lots of laxadazical bubbles meander too and fro. Head is good ½ inch of snowy white creamy bubbles.

S: Pear, red apple, grass clippings, bone dry biscuits and coriander.

T: Begins with gentle green fruit sweetness and mild honeycomb. Green apple is the primary player here but under ripe pear and green grapes aid to the balance. A very floral and spicy hop variety with moments of dry hay, dandelions and pollen. Surprising bitterness begins to take shape and frolics near the back of the tongue. Overall a sense of mineral lasted water adds a limestone dimension. Finishes with creamed corn and sugar snap peas.

M: Medium body, slight hard across the palate with some carbo sting.

D: This was good but fairly standard. Over rated for sure.

Photo of mikesgroove
4.3/5  rDev +0.9%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Huge white head the stayed till the end. A very nice pale amber color, that was nice and cloudy, mostly due to the carbonation. This was the most insanely carbonated brew I have ever seen! Huge chains and streams of bubble, unreal. So active and lively looking, easily a top 5 best looking beer I have ever scene, could not have made it look better!

Smell was off the hook! Tons of fruits. Predominate pears, apricots, figs. Hints of apples, bread and grains, grass. Smell was almost too complex to describe, incredible again.

The taste was a bit of a let down after the look and smell from the start, but still very very good! Taste dances around the palate with pear and apple fruit hints the biggest players. Nice smooth maltiness with the bread and grain tastes coming through again. Slight taste of alcohol but only slight. Nice well rounded and complex taste, just not as powerful as I thought.

Mouthfeel was again superb, very light and frothy with lots of carbonation. Easy to drink and wonderfully complex and alive on the tongue.

Iverall this was a great beer, hugely enjoyable, but the price really cuts the drinkabilty down for me. Awesome nonetheless and glad to have had some, off to the rest of the westy!

Photo of objectivemonkey
4.43/5  rDev +4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

At approximately 10:56 A.M., Central Standard Time, a box was received at my place of employment, holding several bottles of malted beverage, but most notably these: Westvleteren Blonde, Westvleteren 8, and Westvleteren 12. Containing my giddiness, I waited until the afternoon commute home for dismantling the package, freeing the contents inside. Could I wait to get home, you say? Nay, a stop at the car wash was all the time I needed to complete my quest.

As I pull into the wash, letting my corporeal self float through a tunnel of cleansing, my ethereal self ventured into the unknown. What is this Westvleteren? What does it mean to Westvleteren? How does one... Westvleteren. I would know in scant few seconds. I open the box, marvel at the packing job... and to my horror, pick up a faint whiff of stale caramels, days old dried oranges... dear God, what injustice has been done?!?! As I tear through the bubble wrap, peering frantically through miles of semitransparent plastics and vagary, I find three identical bubbles of safety, yet I know what horrors await me. I open one, the 12, all is safe. I open the other, the 8, and I'm starting to breath easier. I move to the Blonde, the only one to still elude me thus far, and to my dismay, I begin to see bubbles not of plastic, but of shame and disgrace, of liquid. What blasphemy has been done?!?

Dejected, I travel home. Into the kitchen the box is placed, for the final scene of this tragedy to unfold. Not unlike a loved one wrapping the final shrouds of cloth over one's deceased partner, I gingerly unfold layer after layer of covering, the protective sheath gone in vain.

Yet, what is this? The bottle, and cap, still intact. And while the wrapping is wet, there is little liquid to be found. Dear Lord, could it be?! In haste I reach for the bottle opener, wrench off the cap, and hear the most joyous sounds known to all humanity!! Carbonation! Air!! Life!!! Beer!!! I carefully pour the golden elixir into my glass, smell, and put it to my lips. And as the golden panacea flows through me, I stop and thank the Gods of Beerdom, for they have been merciful upon me!!

That said, the Blonde is a lovely brew, nice white head and golden body, lacing down the glass, an aroma of orange and lemon zest and spices and beauty. The taste, while on the subdued side, is much better than I've been lead to believe. Wheat grass hops and a lovely zesty lemon orange citrus give it a wit-like feel to it, very nice, very smooth, slightly zesty carbonation even still, this is easily the most drinkable beer I've had in at least month... I lose track quickly.

Photo of Sephiroth
4.63/5  rDev +8.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Thanks to chadspivey for the bottle. Dated best by 11/8/07. I drank this a few months ago, this review is copied word for word from notes.

Pour is very lively, huge head quickly recedes some, but maintains. Earthy, spicy hoppy aroma.

Taste lets me down slightly, but only slightly. Spicy, herbal, and slightly floral are the hops. The malt seems a little restrained, but it combines with the yeast to create a fruitiness that complements the rest of the beer. Mouthfeel is perfect. Full, creamy, and lively from the smooth carbonation. I would drink this all day,everyday, if I could.

Photo of HardTarget
4.4/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Bottle Inspection: No label (as God intended) but plenty of info on the green cap. 5.8% abv. and a date of 17.06.07 (enjoyed 03.02.07).

Aroma: Light Belgian yeast, melon, white wine or champagne. Some pear notes as it warmed a bit.

Appearance: Golden apricot glass, very hazy with a firm cap of bright white that left loops and sheets of lace.

Flavor: The white wine flavor is firm, the fruits are a bit phenolic, and there is a mild leafy hop in the finish.

Mouthfeel: Medium light body, rich carbonation and a creamy texture.

Overall Impression: Total package is very light and refreshing. Quenching even. A world class beer that it is impossible to be objective about. Hand carried this bottle back from Café In De Vrede, again, as God intended.
My 700th review on BA.

Photo of Alkey
4.33/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured from the bottle to my snifter a cloudy light orange color with a white fluffy head that leaves some nice lace around the glass. Some faint smell of spice and malt in the aroma. Taste is mostly pale flavors of spice, malt, and yeast. that leaves a somewhat sticky after taste. This is a light bodied and well carbonated brew with subtle flavors that make it easy to drink but a little to pale for my taste.

Photo of cjgator3
4.18/5  rDev -1.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Green cap with the best before date of 11.08.07 printed on the cap. Poured into a tulip glass. Pours a slightly hazy orangish yellow color with a large creamy white sticky head. Beautiful aroma consisting of a sweet grassy perfume-like aroma, faint citrus and must, and a bit of spice. The taste features a nice slightly spicy hop profile that finishes extremely dry and crisp. Mouthfeel is light bodied and smooth but seems to be under-carbonated. Overall, this is another stellar brew from Westvleteren and one that I could certainly drink all night long if it wasn't for it's rareness.

Photo of jeffaz02t
4.93/5  rDev +15.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Drank the day after a trip to the abbey to pick up 2 cases. Served in a St. Sixtus snifter.

A:Honey colored with yeast lingering on the bottom of the glass. What a beautiful darkish golden color. Lacing like I have never seen before. The head was about an inch, then it went down a bit.

S: The hops are very up front in the smell of this beer. Hints of herbal and pine scents.

T: First I get a yeasty, malty, peppery flavor, yet still dry, then it turns to hops. I really enjoy how the flavor changes from beginning to end. This is really something special.

M: smooth, crisp, not heavy, not light. Medium bodied beer overall.

D: Too bad I only have 2 cases of this. I could convert this to my every day beer. This is almost too drinkable. Will my cases last for more than a month? They better!

Worth the trip from Frankfurt AM to get this brew. Will go again in March to see if I can get any more from these great monks!

Photo of ncbrewerbun
4.2/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Another Christmas present from my daughter...along with the Westvleteren chalice that it was poured in.

The beer poured a light golden color; hazy with a nice inch and a half high white head that lasted well into the drinking experience when turning to lace.

Aroma was a fresh malt and spice along with some fruity esters -- pineapple. Malt came thorugh as bready and sweetness.

Flavor was nicely complex, with malt sweetness, peppery spices and fruit.

Medium light body with good carbonation.

A very nice and easy to drink beer. Having this beer so fresh is quite an experience and enhances all aspects.

Photo of leftmindedrighty
3.98/5  rDev -6.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I received a whole crate of Westvleteren for Christmas, mixed with all three styles. This is the first one I've cracked open.

Smell: Very sweet, almost light honey. Very malty nose, with no real traces of any bitterness

Taste: Follows the smell, very sweet and malty. Faint, very faint bitterness that has to be from hops but I can't taste that hop flavor. Very bready in the finish from the yeast.

I nearly messed myself when I opened this present, but so far this one didn't knock my socks off. A very, very good Belgian Pale Ale, but I'm not sure this one is worth going to the ends of the Earth for.

Photo of cbl2
3.68/5  rDev -13.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

12/25/2006 $18.00 Best by 11-08-07 clearly labeled on green cap.

Appearance:

Pours a slightly hazy golden hue that has intensely fine carbonation that yields a pillowy white half inch head marred by a touch of yeast sediment.

Aroma:

Nice bready quality with faint hints of peppery spicyness with a touch of pineapple.

Taste/Mouthfeel:

Carbonation tickles the tongue, leading to a nice chewy mouthfeel. Flavors are somewhat muted with only a bitter euro-pilsner flavor and the presence of fresh cut grass. A faint hint of malt sweetness creeps in towards the end, but it is overwhelmed by the spicyness of the hops. This is not at all what I was expecting, and I'm a little disappointed. Not a bad beer, but not worth the price.

Photo of laintringulis
4.43/5  rDev +4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Served in an oversized wine glass by my hubby.

Pours a dark golden yellow somewhat cloudy with a large white head that lasts throughout drinking. Incredible lacing. I think hubby poured it a little dirty.

Smell: Strong Belgian yeast, light banana, clover honey, citrus, pleasant grassiness and pepper.

Taste: Brief honey sweetened maltiness on the initial taste. Progresses into nice yeasty citrus, grassy hoppiness with a slightly bitter dry peppery finish. Overall, quite nice. I was not expecting it to live up to the hype.

Light bodied, very well carbonated without being stingy. Not watery or thin. Highly drinkable, easy to session and enjoy. The only draw back is the rarity and the price.

Photo of peabody
4.83/5  rDev +13.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

This is my birthday present to me. 12/22.
Pours out a beautiful cloudy straw color with one full finger of white suds. The last few drops turned the white suds a pale yellow where they fell. Nice malty suds that stay in the Westy chalice for a very long time.
Smell is clove and cinnamon and a sweet yeast that almost burns the back of the nose. The grassy smell is here. (never smelled that before). I guess that's the hops but I have not sampled that aroma before.
I am glad I had a glass of 2 below before I had this. This is so much more complex. Sugar and wheat and straw and caramel.
These hops are incredible. So sweet and dark.
BTW lacing is incredible here.
Mouthfeel is wonderful with so much going on. The maltyness and the black bitterness that just barely comes to the front then dissapears back into the sugary fruitiness.
If I were a rich man then this would be my session beer.
25 bucks a bottle though is a bit high. I have tried it!

Photo of nlmartin
4.4/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

This beer was served in an oversize wine goblet. Through the power of E-Bay Westvleteren comes to me. Yeah, I guess I am an evil unprincipled American.

Appearance: The beer pours a cloudy blonde yelow coloration. Small bubbles from carbonation push for the surface. Small amounts of sediment dance among the bubbles. Perhaps I should have cleaned up my pour but I dont mind chunkies. The head of the beer is 1 finger high with perfect retention. Streaks of lacing remain behind on my glass.

Smell: The beer has musty grassy hops. The smell of banana and honey combine in belgian yeast.

Taste: This beer delivers a very pronounced peppery citrus entry. This gives way to musty grassy hops. This is good stuff!

Mouthfeel/ Drinkability: This beer is light bodied but not thin in the least. The beer is well carbonated. This beer is very smooth. Frankly, this beer would be very hard to improve. This would rank among my all time greatest session beers except for the rarity.

Photo of DogFood11
4.65/5  rDev +9.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Part of my once in a lifetime purchase. Poured into a Westy chalice it forms a loose white head that leaves ring lacing. Hazey golden body, looks like some small yeast particles are causing the haze.

It was rather bland in the nose. I get plenty of wheat and hay. Slightly fruity and some grass on the backside.

Thankfully the taste was a stunning display of complexity. The spices not only gave this brew some life it ressurected the mouthfeel to excellent. Hops are pretty raw and counteract any sweetness for balance. Very smooth and finishes critically clean to the point I was immediatly ready for the next pull. Crispy.

Notes: I was blown away with the taste and mouthfeel. Started off on the wrong foot with the decent appearance and then a uneventful smell. Then it gives you this burst of hops and tons of flavor. Fairly dry overall. My take is that this is a world class beer and one of the best I've had in the style to date.

Photo of mrmanning
3.68/5  rDev -13.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

SLightly hazy pale yellow/straw liquid sits underneath a bed of frothy white foam. Lemony/citrus aromas give way to subtle spices, mixed with grassy/hay nuances. Very soft and pleasant. Very fruity lemon zest and other citrus flavours. Herbal, with mild bitter hopping, and a touch of mint leaf/fresh grass. Good, and again subtle. Very refreshing lemon/mineral finish. Creamy mouthfeel. Thanks for sharing this rare treat Mr. Horsey!

Trappist Westvleteren Blonde from Brouwerij Westvleteren (Sint-Sixtusabdij van Westvleteren)
95 out of 100 based on 730 ratings.