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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.

4,683 Ratings

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Ratings: 4,683
Reviews: 2,166
rAvg: 4.2
pDev: 12.62%
Wants: 253
Gots: 541 | FT: 11
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.
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Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 4,683 | Reviews: 2,166
Photo of swid
4.19/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

33cL bottle; 6.9% ABV listed on label.

Orval pours a hazy-brown color into my tulip class. A large, off-white head forms, containing large bubbles; it slowly collapses in upon itself. Moderate carbonation and lacing. The aromas given off by this beer are quite complex; there's cloves, lemons, a hint of pine, and some unidentifiable funky aroma (it's funky in the very best way, however). Very balanced.

This is one smooth beer. An almost candy-like sweetness is evident when it first hits the front of your tongue. A balanced hop bitterness comes along shortly afterwards. There's a noticeable clove flavor present. This beer is quite full-bodied and is somewhat tart. The alcohol is just perceptable in the aftertaste, which is mildly sour.

This is a funky beer, but if you've become acclimated to sharper-tasting beer, it's very enjoyable. I recommend it.

Photo of SFLpunk
4.19/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

11.2 oz brown glass proprietary brown bottle. Bottled 05/08/09. Poured into my Orval chalice.

Appearance: Hazy amber brown with a good amount of chunky sediment and thick creamy khaki head that won't recede. It looks like a cappuccino really: tan head with some dark streaks from the sediment passing through.

Nose: Brett! Woohoo. Apricot and white oak. Tarragon, ginger and the aroma of Campari (or SanBitter).

Palate: Crisp with some acidity and hop bitterness. Flavors of oak, licorice and herbs/botanicals. I've never noticed the similarities between Campari and Orval, but it's super obvious today. Herbs, bitter orange peel, blood orange and botanicals plus wood. As the beer warms, more floral characters come out, like clover honey.

Notes: Never seems to disappoint. A tasty beer. Really want to try the Petite Orval!

Photo of Leftofthedial
4.2/5  rDev 0%

Photo of BeerTaster
4.2/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance hazy copper in color two finger off white head that stuck around untill the last sip. Smell herbal hop aroma and earthy. Taste same as smell with warming alcohol and a dry snapy finish. Mouthfeel mediem body high carbonation. Drinkability a nice pre dinner beer.

Photo of morimech
4.2/5  rDev 0%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3

Bottled on 30/01/2007 Best before 30/01/2012.

A pour into a chalice a large pillowish white head forms. It takes some time for the head to settle to a thick cap to see what the fluid looks like. The beer is a cloudy amber. As it is drunk a large amount of lacing is left on the glass.

Smell is somewhat like a dry white wine. Very fruity such as passion fruit and pears with some floral hints.

Taste is fruity with a very dry finish at first. As it warms it takes on a earthy aspect with a bit of lemon and grass thrown in. I think I know what people mean by "horse blanket" now. It has that sort of finish. Carbonation makes the beer tingle on the tongue like champagne. I think that is well suited for this beer as it matches well for the light body and flavor.

A very interesting and flavorful beer but the cost and alcohol content does not make this a frequent drinker for me.

Photo of brewbucker
4.2/5  rDev 0%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Bottled on 20/02/2008

Poured into my Chimay chalice. Pours a medium slightly hazy orange copper with a large off white head. Beautiful appearance. Very big aroma of spicy fruits. Sharp orange zest and hints of pepper. Flavor is tart citrus, yeasts, and mild malts. This is only the second time I have tried this beer. I tried it for the first time early on in my "beer geekdomness" and thought it was average. I am glad I revisited this. Orval is truly in a class by itself.

Photo of ReluctantScooper
4.2/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottle at the Nouvelle Hostellerie D'Orval.

Orval is a beer that's grown on me through the years. All leather and banana and cinnamon and grated lemon zest and fresh bread and dry spice and, and, and...

... and it turns a cheese sandwich into a banquet. And when Orval's commercial director, Francois de Harenne, insists on pouring it for you as he tells you about the region's political history, it becomes a marker of surreality.

There's beer. There's Belgian beer. And then, there's Orval. Worth falling in love with over and over again.

Photo of crosbyms
4.2/5  rDev 0%

Photo of StoutHunter
4.2/5  rDev 0%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

I picked up a bottle of Orval Trappist Ale for $5.49 at The Lager Mill. I have been meaning to try this beer for a while now but for some reason I just never got around to it, so I decided to stop procrastinating and give it a try, so lets see how it goes. Poured from a brown 11.2oz bottle that is shaped like a bowling pin into my goblet. This bottle is over a year old it was bottled April 22 2010, I guess it should be good till 2015, didn't know this brew would hold up for that long.

A- The label is pretty simple but it works well with the weird bottle shape and has a "Trappist" look to it. It poured a nice looking golden orange color that was clearer then I expected. It had four and a half fingers worth of huge fluffy white head that died down to a thick layer and left some spotty lacing.

S- The aroma is very nice and fruity, it almost reminds me of a hard cider. I pick up some green apples, white grapes, and some tart cherry's. I also pick up some floral aromas along with that signature Belgian yeast. There was some barnyard funk aromas once it warmed up.

T- This brew tastes pretty different from what I was expecting. The flavor is full of light fruit flavors, similar to the aroma just lighter and more subtle. The fruits, mainly, apples, cherry's, and white grapes blend together nicely and are pretty tart. In the middle I picked up a little funk that I wasn't expecting and some spices from the Belgian yeast. The finish had a slight floral hoppy bitterness to it.

M- Medium light bodied and smooth with a pretty dry finish. The carbonation was pretty high and could have been toned down just a little, but that didn't hurt it too much.

Overall this was a pretty good Belgian Pale Ale the best and most traditional one I have had to date. The aroma and look of this beer was awesome and the flavor was subtle yet pretty complex. It wasn't as flavorful as some of the American versions I have tried but it made up for that with it's complexity and the subtle flavors and great body made this beer have some great drinkability, this would hit the spot on a warm summer night. It was a little expensive but I feel it is worth the price to enjoy this beer once in a while. If you like Belgians this is a must try, a great old school brew.

Photo of wingnutter
4.2/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Nice coudy golden amber with a tight, lingering head. Nice lacing. Smells fruity, yeasty. Tastes great. Sweet/Sour, orange zest, biscuity, slight apple notes. Smooth and creamy/buttery. This is good beer. As good if not better than any trappist ale Ive tried. Great bitter fruity aftertaste. Alcohol didn't show itself in the taste.

World class.

Photo of TheNapkin
4.2/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

What a beautiful beer. Sour, malty, and dry. A truly world-class Belgian. Great carbonation (meaning it's balanced with the flavor, not excessive and not underwhelmed), highly drinkable, great tartness and just enough thinness in the body to go down easy. Pleasant in so many ways.

Photo of jpd026
4.2/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Photo of Kyle424
4.2/5  rDev 0%

Photo of roblowther
4.2/5  rDev 0%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Looks great, in short. Golden in color, seems to glow when you hold it up to the light. The head is dense and creamy, with bubbles too small to see in places. Smell is sweet but with a bitter note in the background and something like cloves. Tastes peppery at first, but that quickly mellows to reveal the malt. That, in turn, yields to the dry, slightly acidic finish that is a very crisp, refreshing combination indeed. I suspect that aging would only benefit this one, though I've never tried it. Mouthfeel is very good, silky and oily, which makes a nice contrast to the crisp flavor finish. Drinkability is good but the dryness of the aftertaste usually means I only have one of these in a session. I haven't had another beer like this, its really a great, unique experience. Pair it with (as you can at the cafe nearby) a ham, potato, and cheese stew, cooked in the beer, and you've really got something!

Photo of mikeys01
4.2/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Seved from a nice pear shaped bottle, my Orval poured out very well carbonated and buried in an avalanche of voluminous off white foamy head. This foamy mass took it's sweet old time melting away and becoming quite rocky in nature as it eroded. Buried beneath was a volume of hazy ale the color of early sunset orange. Aroma is yeasty, a bit bitter, and hint of orange peel and spice. Body is medium and almost refreshing while stil chilled a bit. Flavor is at first dominated by malt and funky bread flavors, with only a hint of spice at first as well as some lemon tartness. After a couple sips, more peppery tang and citrus flavors push through the malt and yeast to make them selves known. Finish brings out just a bit of alcohol warmth and is otherwise clean.

Photo of froghop
4.2/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

pour is a deep amber with a huge white foamy head that stays around through the whole experience, lacing is excellent.

smell is spice, dark fruit, orange, hops, and some lemon-lime hidden in the back.

taste is carbonated, sour malt, citrus, orange, sweet fruit, few hops in the end, and some spic, leaves the mouth on the dry side.

Photo of WakeandBake
4.2/5  rDev 0%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Bottle, bottled on date 24/04/2007 best before 24/04/2012. A hazy light amber pour ,loads of carbonation bubbles,and a huge fluffy off white head, wonderful lacing and lasted till the very end.
Aroma is a wonderful scent of spices,sugar and lemon,lighter notes of orange and a nice finish of yeast and hops.The flavor is a blend of spices & lemon, Light banana notes and fruity esters form the yeast, nice bready notes, a crisp refreshing mouthfeel with a very dry finish of hops and alcohol. Very complex and balanced.A very fun try .

Photo of zeff80
4.2/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Poured out a copper/orange color with a huge white head. It left very nice lacing.

S - It smelled of dried fruits, yeast and alcohol.

T - It had a spicy flavor. There was also a citrusy (orange) taste. Good sour notes.

M - It was crisp and dry. It is medium to heavy-bodied.

D - This is a great Belgian ale. I love the sour kick with is traditional Belgian ale taste.

Photo of Larrytown
4.2/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours an orangish-brown with a big head that fades quickly to a solid, consistent ring. The fruit is the first thing noticed off the bat with a bit of malt and hops playing around the edges.

The taste is dry and spicy. Definitely wine-like and there's no trouble seeing the champagne comparisons with such a crisp mouthfeel. It jumps out at you.

This is a very enjoyable, unique beer, but I doubt I'd want more than one in any given evening.

Photo of CA_Infidel2o9
4.2/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a 11.2oz to a Tulip
Bottled 6/10/11

A- hazy golden orange, 1 1/2" fluffy long lasting white head

S- apple cider, caramel, citrus, grape, wine, banana, earthy, belgian yeast

T- apple cider, caramrl, tart, spices, pils malts, lingering metallic grapefruit bitterness

M- low to medium body, crisp carbonation

O- a very nice brew. If i had to chose one beer to drink through out the summer. This would be it.

Photo of SmasNadroj
4.2/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Poured into a tulip glass from a bottle labeled 09/07/2008.

Very intense head, like sea foam that just won't go away- I don't mind this, really, but it makes it a little challenging to pour the whole bottle.

Its a shadowy orange color, much lighter than I was expecting but once it opens up and the "sea foam" subsides, the smell is delicately spicy, like nuts roasted in butter and coriander.

Orval has a nice maltiness to it that gives it a refreshing, almost biscuity crispness. Hints of lemon, sweet yeast, and white grapes are hiding behind the malt. Very refreshing

In a white trash way, I wish they made this beer in "affordable" (I'm talkin $20-$25) 12 packs - even in cans- so us prestigious bastards could easily pick one up and take it to a party, bonfire, or camping because its so easy to drink. Mine was gone before I knew it- and yes, there is still sea foam down one side of my glass.

A great trappist, though not quite what I was expecting. Get you one!

Photo of Mebuzzard
4.2/5  rDev 0%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Poured into a Duvel snifter. Good deep brown body and big head. Head laced on the sides and clumped in the middle.
Aroma of ripe (brown) bananas, malt and some citrus hops.
taste was more of an IPA style. Hops and citrus, with some roasted malt, biscuit and basil.
Had a bit of a bite to it, more hops than I expected, finished with a dryness. A complex beer overall.

Photo of jzeilinger
4.2/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours an opaque golden orange, nice creamy white two finger head, very active carbonation.

Smell has hints of spices, lemon, and floral notes. Also getting a little bit of sourness in the aroma which makes me very nervous about this bottle, may not be as fresh as it chould be.

Taste is light citrus, toasted malts, a tinge of sourness but not as bad as I had expected judging from the aroma. Also has some lemon, coriander spice, and a hoppy character that is present almost the entire way through and finishes very, very dry - one of the driest beers I've had.

Mouthfeel is light, "airy" and delicate, the carbonation is "fluffy" on the tongue and is slow to dissipate. Some people have put the body on the medium side but I think it runs closer to the heavier side of light, not quite medium. Drinkability is good, I dig the bitterness factor as I'm not used to getting that very often in a Belgian ale.

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Orval Trappist Ale from Brasserie d'Orval S.A.
94 out of 100 based on 4,683 ratings.