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!

Orval Trappist Ale - Brasserie d'Orval S.A.

Not Rated.
Orval Trappist AleOrval Trappist Ale

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
94
outstanding

4,171 Ratings
THE BROS
100
world-class

(view ratings)
Ratings: 4,171
Reviews: 2,103
rAvg: 4.2
pDev: 12.86%
Wants: 184
Gots: 325 | FT: 9
Brewed by:
Brasserie d'Orval S.A. visit their website
Belgium

Style | ABV
Belgian Pale Ale |  6.20% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes/Commercial Description:
This beer is 6.2% when released in Europe, US labels say 6.9% due to labeling laws.

(Beer added by: Bierman9 on 09-18-2001)
View: Beers (2) |  Events
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Latest | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Orval Trappist Ale Alström Bros
Ratings: 4,171 | Reviews: 2,103 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of aclark44
aclark44

Minnesota

5/5  rDev +19%

03-03-2012 02:35:07 | More by aclark44
Photo of Converge
Converge

Alberta (Canada)

3.58/5  rDev -14.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

330ml bottle poured into a 16oz tulip.

A - Pours with a big head of light tan bubbles, although it's rather short-lived. The color is a murky rusty-copper, with ample yeasty cloudiness. Not much head retention or lacing to speak of.

S - Smells complex and nothing like I had expected. Lots of dark fruits, a touch a anise, and some sour acetaldehyde notes. Some sweet bready malt and grassy hops come through as well, but this is overall much more dark and heavy feeling than I had anticipated. I'm picking up some molasses, figs, and some caramel malt. It's got a slightly herbal, or medicinal quality that turns me off a little, sort of reminds me of a barley wine in this regard. Butterscotch, brown sugar, and a distinct spicy character also come through.

T - Sort of strange, lots of sweet malt presence, kind of butterscotch like. Quite bready and yeasty through the middle, with lots of dark fruits complimenting this. Finishes with a dry, earthy hop feel with a pronounced spiciness. Lots of odd buttery-sweet malt flavors throughout. The dark fruits don't really work well with this malty sweetness, and the strange acetaldehyde funkiness really feels off. I get a touch of oak-like cherry flavor and herbal notes after it warms a bit, furthering the similarities between this and a barley wine. Overall this flavor profile feels a bit disjointed and peculiar to me; it's a decent tasting beer and undeniably complex, but far from other Belgian ales I've enjoyed.

M - Medium bodied feel, with nice smooth carbonation, just like I would expect a Trappist ale feel like, but at the same time the body feels a touch slick and oily. Kind of syrupy even.

D - Definitely feeling a little underwhelmed by Orval. While I'm a big fan of Belgian ales, this one wasn't really my cup of tea - or beer I suppose. It was certainly worth trying once, and maybe I'll even revisit it again with a re-review down the road, but until then Orval will sit comfortably behind the likes of finer Belgian ales out there for me.

Serving type: bottle

03-03-2012 02:30:27 | More by Converge
Photo of vr6corrado
vr6corrado

California

4/5  rDev -4.8%

03-02-2012 18:04:51 | More by vr6corrado
Photo of amart79
amart79

California

4/5  rDev -4.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - very big frothy head on a golden brown cloudy body

S - dark fruits, very complex smell

T - The dark fruits and funky complex flavors are right there and stick with you.

M - light carbonation with a smooth feel with a small bite right in the middle

Serving type: bottle

03-02-2012 04:42:52 | More by amart79
Photo of SURFBUGG
SURFBUGG

California

4.5/5  rDev +7.1%

03-01-2012 21:10:20 | More by SURFBUGG
Photo of Beezee
Beezee

Illinois

3/5  rDev -28.6%

03-01-2012 04:08:49 | More by Beezee
Photo of shigg85
shigg85

Japan

4.6/5  rDev +9.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Bought a bottle of this from Tanakaya in Mejiro, Tokyo. Poured it into a Trappistes Rochefort goblet. Amazing thick head that settles and remains for the life of the brew in a fried egg pattern with a thick yolk in the middle of the glass that thins out from there. The smell is the first thing that embraces me as I pour it. Amazingly strong and pleasant! The taste is equally wonderful: a strong barley base with fruity notes of apple and spice. The mouthfeel was a little thin, but still pleasant in how it foamed back up in the mouth a bit. Overall, another great Belgian trappist brew to add to the list.

Serving type: bottle

02-29-2012 23:19:35 | More by shigg85
Photo of derekfilcoff
derekfilcoff

Florida

5/5  rDev +19%

02-28-2012 23:00:56 | More by derekfilcoff
Photo of wrath98
wrath98

New Jersey

4.5/5  rDev +7.1%

02-28-2012 17:42:35 | More by wrath98
Photo of Philousa
Philousa

California

3.55/5  rDev -15.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Pours a cloudy dark tan with a thick three finger head. Takes a while to settle down, but it's not out of control. Belgian yeast is the showcase for the nose. Banana, allspice, some beligan pale malt aroma and some sweet caramel. Lighter than I was expecting. The taste is thoroughly bitter with a light body. Most spices come through well in taste, allspice and pepper mostly, but it's mild. Tart lemon zest lingers with the bitterness. Medium moutfheel, well balanced. Dry finish.

This was very mild. I can tell that there are complexities in here, but it's hard to coax out of the glass. I get more malt aroma with a good swirl, which showcases the grains well, but the yeast really doesn't stand out as much as I think it should. I feel pretentious saying how this beer should be brewed, one that has been brewed for hundreds of years, but hey, it's how I feel. I'm thinking this was built up too much for me and I wanted more complexity. It's a great Belgian Pale, but nothing spectacular.

Serving type: bottle

02-28-2012 04:21:51 | More by Philousa
Photo of beermaned
beermaned

Florida

4.5/5  rDev +7.1%

02-27-2012 22:32:04 | More by beermaned
Photo of MisledTitan
MisledTitan

United Kingdom (England)

4/5  rDev -4.8%

02-27-2012 18:28:29 | More by MisledTitan
Photo of LukeONeill
LukeONeill


4.5/5  rDev +7.1%

02-27-2012 05:11:02 | More by LukeONeill
Photo of macshark
macshark

Virginia

5/5  rDev +19%

02-27-2012 03:02:38 | More by macshark
Photo of Weter
Weter

Michigan

4/5  rDev -4.8%

02-27-2012 02:12:13 | More by Weter
Photo of dbrauneis
dbrauneis

North Carolina

4.25/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottle dated 10/03/2011 and best by 10/03/2016.

A: Slightly hazy golden amber in color with a two finger tall foamy white head. This beer exhibited excellent head retention properties and significant lacing is observed.

S: Aromas of green apples, lemon zest, barnyard funk, and spices/pepper. Quite complex and enticing.

T: Flavors of green apple with some brown sugar sweetness, followed by lemon zest and spices/pepper, and finish with a pleasant bitterness. A little of the funk is present as well and the flavors are complex.

M: Medium bodied with moderation to high amounts of carbonation. Mild acidity is present and the beer is crisp.

O: Great beer - a very well done Trappist beer. I'm really glad this is available at the local bottleshop because I have and will continue to enjoy this beer. Nice complexity in the aroma and flavors.

Serving type: bottle

02-27-2012 01:51:07 | More by dbrauneis
Photo of JonesD
JonesD


3.5/5  rDev -16.7%

02-27-2012 00:00:19 | More by JonesD
Photo of getbehindthemule
getbehindthemule

Kentucky

3.5/5  rDev -16.7%

02-26-2012 15:44:32 | More by getbehindthemule
Photo of AlastairM
AlastairM

United Kingdom (England)

4.5/5  rDev +7.1%

02-26-2012 14:24:04 | More by AlastairM
Photo of OttomanSoxFan
OttomanSoxFan


4.5/5  rDev +7.1%

02-26-2012 11:18:39 | More by OttomanSoxFan
Photo of mjtiernan
mjtiernan

New York

4.4/5  rDev +4.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

11.2oz bottle poured into a goblet. Bottled on 11/17/10 and best by 11/17/15.

A: A slow pour resulted in a pillowy two finger head. This one has some carb.Good retention and heavy lacing throughout. Body is copper colored and fairly clear.

S: White pepper and clove. Bready yeast. Earthy barnyard funk and hay. Lemon citrus. Some floral notes that add a touch of sweetness to the aroma.

T: Like the nose but with much greater intensity. Heavy pepper and clove. Caramel pays a short visit. Waves of tart funk and breadiness...more like cracker than bread I suppose. The floral qualities come through mid-palate. Finishes bone dry with some fusel alcohol aftertaste.

M: Medium body, heavy carb. It’s mostly dry with some prickliness on the tongue. It warms you a bit.

O: Although this isn’t my favorite style, it is very easy to appreciate. Very complex and balanced despite the intensity of its flavors. The measuring stick for Belgian pales.

Serving type: bottle

02-26-2012 05:54:11 | More by mjtiernan
Photo of travMI13
travMI13

Michigan

4.68/5  rDev +11.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

What better way to break in an Orval goblet than with the beer itself? Also, this may be the freshest I have ever had this beer, and that was by design. 2011 vintage. Bottled on 10/2/2011. 12 oz. bottle poured into an Orval goblet.

A: Deep, golden orange with a finger of fluffy, white head. Excellent head retention with tons of lacing.

S: A mild fruity aroma with hints of hops and yeast. The smell is pretty mellow, but it is very inviting.

T: The subtle hint of sweet fruits like some sort of wild berries hits first, transitioning to caramel malts and caramelized sugar. I get slight yeasty funk next, followed up by a nice bitterness from the hops, finishing out with the sweetness that was there from the start. Whoa. It really has been a while since I've had this, and I must have missed it. This is incredibly complex.

M: Great carbonation, mild acidity, and near perfect balance. The flavor lingering on the mouth constantly changes and lures me back in for more. Wow.

O: Doing a formal review only confirms why this is a classic. It also reaffirms why one could argue that this is the class of the Trappist ales, and why it remains one of the best beers in the world. I can't believe I went a year or two without having it. This should be in both my refrigerator and cellar at all times.

Serving type: bottle

02-26-2012 05:19:40 | More by travMI13
Photo of Neorebel
Neorebel

New Jersey

4.9/5  rDev +16.7%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

As I pour into my goblet Orval appears as a beautiful shade of clear copper, topped with a very puffy 1" white head. The aroma is very rich and complex. I'm picking up spices, a yeasty 'farmhouse' funk, sugary malt, and various fruits- including green/sour apple, lemon and banana. What's nice about experiencing this beer is that the initial flavor and feel is crisp and peppery, with a subtle hint of hops, and the finish is a nice 'banana bread' aftertaste. Absolutely delicious and drinkable anytime. One of my favorite beers.

Serving type: bottle

02-26-2012 03:39:37 | More by Neorebel
Photo of Obscure05
Obscure05

Wisconsin

4.5/5  rDev +7.1%

02-25-2012 23:37:18 | More by Obscure05
Photo of Aschap
Aschap

Pennsylvania

4.5/5  rDev +7.1%

02-25-2012 14:02:50 | More by Aschap
Orval Trappist Ale from Brasserie d'Orval S.A.
94 out of 100 based on 4,171 ratings.