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

Not Rated.
Orval Trappist AleOrval Trappist Ale

Educational use only; do not reuse.

2,214 Reviews

(Read More)
Reviews: 2,214
Hads: 4,970
Avg: 4.17
pDev: 18.94%
Wants: 301
Gots: 684 | FT: 12
Brewed by:
Brasserie d'Orval S.A. visit their website

Style | ABV
Belgian Pale Ale |  6.20% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: Bierman9 on 09-18-2001

This beer is 6.2% when released in Europe, US labels say 6.9% due to labeling laws.

Many agree that the somewhat unpractical addition of this sometimes undesired yeast strain is what grants Orval its age worthiness, not to mention unique aroma, making it a one of the few beers worth cellaring.
View: Beers (2) | Events
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Orval Trappist Ale Alström Bros
Reviews: 2,214 | Hads: 4,970
Photo of BWood
3.42/5  rDev -18%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.25

Didn't live up to the hype for me. Herd great things from this brewery but I have to say I don't think I would buy again. So many other Belgium trappist I would choose over this.

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Photo of ilikebeer03
3.74/5  rDev -10.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

12 oz bottle. bottled on 4/15/13. drank 5/12/15

A caramel in colour with a huge head.

S green apple, light fruit, pears, brett funk

T taste follows the nose with green apple, pears, brett funk, slight spiciness.

M very carbonated. likely from the brett

O pretty good

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Photo of KatieS5643
2.44/5  rDev -41.5%
look: 2 | smell: 2.25 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 1.75 | overall: 2.5

This was a caramel colored beer, it had lots of foam when it was poured. It has a nutty scent to it. It tastes very sweet and you can definitely taste the nutty hints. It made me want to brush my teeth after consuming because it felt so sweet.

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Photo of Trombone69
3.92/5  rDev -6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

It's a classic. Awesome bottle. Nice big head, coming out the top of my stemmed glass. Complex smell and flavor, spices and sweetness and bitterness. Perfect mouthfeel. I'm just not sure I really enjoy the flavor, it's almost medicinal. I understand the appeal for others, but I just don't think I'll be looking for this anytime soon.

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Photo of KF_MSU
4/5  rDev -4.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Lasting foam, cloudy and golden. Interesting smell-- like melons and somewhat salty. It tasted smooth and slightly savory. I also got hints of citrus/orange. Definitely unique.

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Photo of MakenziMantey
3.43/5  rDev -17.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

The color of this beer is a medium orange/brown. The aroma you get is a slightly fruity with a hint of spice smell. Tasting this beer it is sweet and spicy with a really bad aftertaste.

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Photo of 303beer
3.73/5  rDev -10.6%
look: 2.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Poured out cloudy. Very airy head. Has a peach copper kinda color to it. Smells fruity sort of. Wow ok sweet then bitter. Then Belgium yeast. I'm not disappointed at all.

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Photo of captaincoffee
4.57/5  rDev +9.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I remember trying Orval many, many years ago when I was first geiing into beer and thinking it was okay. I almost feel ashamed now, realizing what a truly great beer this is. Unique yeast notes on the nose have floral and spicy characteristics. The flavor changes from initial taste to the finish, and changes further as it breathes and warms a bit. I don't find it funky in a traditional Brett sense, but it adds another flavor layer that all comes together.
Different and special, this is one to go back to over and over.

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Photo of GiveEmilyBeer
4.87/5  rDev +16.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

Sour, funky, smooth, delicious. Can be drank cold, cool or at room temperature, and will reveal different complexities and aromas at different temps. Notes of cherries, fruit, citrus aroma. Should be served in a chalice or tulip glass. A world class trappist ale.

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Photo of Beer-A-Lot
4.22/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Used to drink this a lot and just thought it less satisfying than most Trappist ales I drink. But a couple years later, drank it at a craft beer bar in a nice oversized wine glass and liked it more than ever. Interesting but a good interesting.

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Photo of Cannybrew
4.39/5  rDev +5.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured a beautiful golden Amber with good frothy head which slowly dissipitates. Smells are subtle. Black cherry, honey sweetness, and a spicy zing. A definite malty sweetness comes through at the back of the tongue. A very well balanced, yet highly carbonated beer leaves a dry mouthfeel. Fab!

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Photo of dukeandduke
4.19/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

3/26/15 (Bottle) - Very nice dark amber pour, solid carbonation and nice thick tan foam head. Aromas included citrus, raspberries, yeast and hops. Excellent taste matched the sweet aromas and included a nice dry finish. Smooth, strong and pleasant going down. Over all excellent beer.

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Photo of drmeto
3.91/5  rDev -6.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 3.75

-Very fruity,but hard to distinguish flavors hit first i made out citrus,orange,spices and bubble gum
-definitely a more malt and hop-heavy presence than the other trappists i had so far
-hops are esp. there in the finish,which seemed quite light and water-y to me
-nicely carbonated

very good one but i prefer the Rochefort 6

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Photo of randomNBGD
4.79/5  rDev +14.9%
look: 4.75 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

The beer was bottled on 2014/04/29 in a 0.33l package. Pouring it into a tulip glass was a challenge, as the foam head grew rapidly. I had to be very careful and patient to pour the rest of the beer. Apart from the big fluffy head that took some time to fade, I also appreciated the bright orange/amber colour of the base.

The smell was something I did not expect - it was worth waiting for the head to stabilize. Lime, cherry, raspberry and even some elderberry came out there. Unusual, yet exciting notes.

The taste was along the same line, with more floral notes in the beginning, cherry/berry character all along, and the citrusy part becoming prominent as the beer was getting warmer.

Carbonation is zesty in the beggining, and the feel after the sip is quite dry, due to the dry-hopping process.

Although I had a (wrong) preconception that this is another fine classic Belgian ale, the funk this beer gives made it one of my favourite Belgians, and beyond that style.

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Photo of Stjimmy10_1
3.92/5  rDev -6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Extremely carbonated and does a hell of an Old Faithful impression. I'm glad its on the lighter side and wont stain. Its got a strong tart flavor that mellows out later but its followed by a nice lingering, orange and bitter citrus finish. I'm not the biggest belgian fan out there but its worth the money.

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Photo of ajm5108
3.98/5  rDev -4.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Very tart, musty nose followed by a grassy dry flavor with spikes of bitter citrus. Finishes clean. Heavy on the yeast but brings a lot of flavors to the mix.

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Photo of CTbrew32
3.5/5  rDev -16.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

Appearance- Hazy orange amber in color with a 4 finger head produced on the pour. Extremely carbonated so a slow pour is necessary.

Aroma- Funky aroma, citrus, and a little caramel sweetness. The funky/tart/barnyard aroma definitely dominates though.

Taste- Immediately noticing the funky from the brett which lends to a slightly dry and tart taste. In the middle some acidic fruits show up, especially lemon and orange. Some caramel malt rounds out the finish, along with some honey sweetness.

Feel- High carbonation upfront but a little more mellow in the finish. Medium bodied and very dry and crisp.

Overall- Honestly didn't know what to expect with this and definitely didn't anticipate the Brett aspect. Funky barnyard beers usually aren't up my alley, but this strikes a good balance with some funk upfront but fading to citrus and caramel combine for a crisp finish. Good beer in my book and worth trying again, but this would probably be more enjoyed by those who like Brett influenced beers.

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Photo of AlsaceSF
4.53/5  rDev +8.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

Bottled 17/7/14
Drunk 26/2/15

Elite beer -- reminds me of a complex champagne

Beautiful orange amber pour.
4 in white head proceeding to lace on sides of glass

High carbonation very noticeable upfront
Initial bitterness on the tip of the tongue smooths over to intricate hints of farm / citrus throughout back of palate...

Not the easiest beer to drink. But well worth it. Tastes slightly different each sip. Wholesome ABV feel once consumed. Will definitely have again in the future.


Extremely pleasant beer with amazing evolution in tastes throughout...

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Photo of gillagorilla
4.47/5  rDev +7.2%
look: 5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Poured into a Chimay goblet (Bottled on: 3/27/14)

A: That head is big and retention is long. Hazy copper body with some sweet lacing and a nice good layer of bubbles on top, so not just a collar.
S: Funky with a bit of tart/fruit to it, which is all from the Brett.
T: Deliciously funky with a touch of tart. Refreshing and easy-going. This might be my favorite Brett beer and possibly my favorite Trappist one so far. Just gets better as it warms up.
M: Nice even layer of carbonation that is foamy and with just a bit of roughness.
O: I really wonder what my 2011 bottle will taste like next year. This is just a brilliant beer and I really want to do a vertical of it now.

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Photo of DaveBar
3.67/5  rDev -12%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

Purchased at the LCBO for $3.30 for a 330ml bottle. Served at 8deg C in a tulip. Bottled on date of 22/8/13 so 1.5yrs old before I pulled it from the cellar.

A- Opens well and pours a ton of head. Watch out as if not careful it will overflow any glass. Rather dark gold almost brown. The head stays forever.

S- Oodles of yeast and hops here. Efflorescent

T- Brett yeast hits you in the face on the first sip. A bit sour. Low on the hops. Not what I was expecting after all the hoopla on this beer. No heat at all

M- Super carbonated. Dry and tart.

O- Not very good beer overall. Overhyped to the max. Will try one last time with a fresh one to see how it goes but don't expect a big change. This beer starts off like a house on fire then wimpers off into the distance.

Food Pairing

This ok beer went well with..... grilled mahi mahi. Nice meaty fish with this beer was fairly good


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Photo of JaimeLondon
3.69/5  rDev -11.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Belgian trappist ale of a dark orange color and a great whitey and creamy foam.
Smell and taste are characterized by the yeasty tones, really nice.
Aroma so becomes spicy, possible to feel a bit of black pepper.
The highlights on the taste are the malty tones, a bit disappointing.
Mouthfeel is interesting, somewhat light and efervescent.

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Photo of pat61
5/5  rDev +19.9%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Orval pours brilliant copper to orange tinted amber under a moussey, finely bubbled 2” bone-white foam cap. It has a funky, wet horse blanket lemony nose with a hint of mustiness. It drinks tart, lemony with a hint of pineapple especially as it ages with a refreshing bitterness and a long lingering tart dry finish with soft leather notes. The texture is soft and effervescent, like drinking a mousse. This is excellent fresh and even better as it ages.

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Photo of geodonnokepyo
3.81/5  rDev -8.6%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

look - hazy golden amber, very frothy, excellent head retention and lacing

smell - hints of raisins and bubble gum along with other belgian yeast complexities, malty with some hop aromas sneaking through

taste - like cooper's sparkling ale (which i am not a huge fan of) bitter, musty, finishes slightly sweet

feel - very sticky, also sort of chalky and chewy. very carbonated

overall - the flavor was not what i expected. however, the craftsmanship of this beer is admirable. i might have to age one and try it again.

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Photo of tillmac62
3.82/5  rDev -8.4%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

BOD 2/7/13, BBD 2/7/18. Pours a clear medium amber (copper) with just a hint of garnet. World Class head volume, lacing and retention - the best I have ever seen. The final pour provides a mild cloudiness.

Complex nose of sweet fruit (grape, pineapple) coupled with tart lemon. Underneath there are notes of Belgian yeast, a slight spice, subtle sweetness and a bit of slightly sour earthiness (funk).

Medium body with a creamy texture. Normal carbonation with a bit of effervescence in the finish.

Unfortunately, the flavor profile isn't as impressive as the appearance or the aroma. It is intense, lacks complexity, and is poorly balanced. From the onset, phenols dominate and little else comes forward. In the middle, a bit of biscuit sweetness is underneath, but you really have to "look" for it. The finish is dry.

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Photo of cottonkoozie
4.86/5  rDev +16.5%
look: 4.75 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 5

A - Pours a deep copper color with a monster off-white head that sticks around like many of this style.

S - Little bit of sweetness. Some citrus. Something else i'm not sure how to describe, assuming it is the yeast strain, a little musky. Somewhat of a sour smell. Picking up some fruits, banana. A lot going on here.

T - Wow. A lot going on here, like the smell. Citrus, light fruits up front. Slightly sour, almost lemony. Yeast strain lends an interesting complexity that is very nice. finishes a little bitter but dry.

F - Very carbonated, works nicely with the clean finish.

Very good beer. Unique, and in a good way. This one was bottled about 10 months ago, and can be cellared up to 5 years. Would like to see how it changes over time. Nice complexity of sweet, sour, bitter, citrus. Very good depth of flavors here. Great beer.

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Orval Trappist Ale from Brasserie d'Orval S.A.
93 out of 100 based on 2,214 ratings.