Three Philosophers Belgian Style Blend (Quadrupel) - Brewery Ommegang

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Three Philosophers Belgian Style Blend (Quadrupel)Three Philosophers Belgian Style Blend (Quadrupel)

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BA SCORE
93
outstanding

5,867 Ratings
THE BROS
91
outstanding

(view ratings)
Ratings: 5,867
Reviews: 2,036
rAvg: 4.15
pDev: 11.57%
Wants: 306
Gots: 1,156 | FT: 22
Brewed by:
Brewery Ommegang visit their website
New York, United States

Style | ABV
Quadrupel (Quad) |  9.70% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 04-23-2002

No notes at this time.
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 5,867 | Reviews: 2,036
Photo of Sammy
3.53/5  rDev -14.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Nice oud cherry colour, good lacing. Like a good wine in appearance. Good yeast aroma. Bit of plum- more action in sediment at end.
It is undeniably fresh yet found it bland. Watered down cherry and not a full punch of a quad. Could it have been dusty glasses?

Photo of t0rin0
4/5  rDev -3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I've had this a number of times now and each time it is a little different. Not sure if they've been abused or what but some of them didn't impress me. I'll review the newest one that I've tried.

The beer pours a brown color, there are hints of red but its mostly brown. Nice head retention and some lacing. Relatively clear.

The smell is of dark malts, sugar, and cherries. Theres also some alcohol present in the nose. The taste is a little bitter but thats intentional (from the kriek). Theres some nice cherry flavor as well as a ton of sweetness coming from all the malt. As the beer warms more and more alcohol comes out. But if its too cold then you can't taste the cherries. There is definitely an optimum temperature at wich to drink this beer,

The body is heavy and I can feel it in my stomach. Not exactly a low calorie beer or anything but its great if you take care not to ruin the beer.

Photo of UCLABrewN84
3.55/5  rDev -14.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

2012 vintage.

Pours a clear brown with a foamy tan head that settles to wisps of film on top of the beer. Small dots of lace form around the glass on the drink down. Smell is of malt, brown sugar, dark fruit, and some slight sour cherry aromas. Taste is much the same with a slight roast flavor and an alcohol kick on the finish. This beer has a good level of carbonation with a crisp mouthfeel. Overall, this is a pretty good beer that is pretty tasty but fairly strong.

Photo of GRG1313
4.29/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

2010 dated 12 fl. oz bottle.

Pours a dark brown with a short off white head that quickly fades.

Nose is very assertive and fruity with huge cherry charmal character and big malt tones.

Mouthfeel is big, rich and creamy and elegantly carbonated with good balance.

Flavors are big, full and rich cherry carmel and big malt, light whiskey tones.

This is a big rich quad and amost sweet enough in caracter to have with dessert or even as a sipper.

Photo of nmann08
4.25/5  rDev +2.4%

From a bottle, pours a dark ruby/copper color with a light than head. Very carbonated, lots of active bubbles. The head is airy and very fizzy. It dissipates similar to how soda does.

The nose is citrus and dark fruit, belgian yeast, and molasses. A little toffee and rustic funk. Personally, I get raisins instead of cherries, but could be just my nose. The flavor is much more tart than I anticipated and the kriek blend really is present here. More dark fruit, plums, grapes and moderately sweet molasses. This is a great blend, enjoying the sour element to it. The only negative for me is the over carbonation. Great beer, just less fizz.

Photo of kylehay2004
3.65/5  rDev -12%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Single finger head and not much lacing on a cloudy amber with yellow hues body. Sweet and maple syrup like smell with dark fruit notes. Initially this one is very boozy and bitter but it mellows out some. Still too boozy. Takes away from the dried fruit glavor in the background. Medium body and moderate carbonation. Overall just too much alcohol taste.

Photo of metter98
4.32/5  rDev +4.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Poured dark reddish brown into a snifter glass with a generous creamy brownish head. The head died down and became lacy. The beer is very dark, and I had to hold it up to a light to confirm that there was a moderate level of carbonation.
S: Light, pleasant aroma of cherries with raisins, spices, and other dark fruits. The aroma increases as the beer warms up, after which you can start to smell some of the alcohol.
T: Cherries are very apparent in the taste along with hints of raisins and spices. There's a nice malty sweetness in the finish. The taste isn't very complex, but it's an interesting combination of cherries and malt unique for this particular style.
M; It feels smooth, creamy and well balanced. A medium-bodied beer.
D: The alcohol isn't very apparent in the taste but it definitely hits you later on.

Photo of Thorpe429
3.48/5  rDev -16.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Reviewed from notes.

Pours a nice reddish brown with a light tan head that stays around at about half a finger and leaves some good lacing. Nose brings forward subtle hints of cherries along with some light caramel and dark fruits. Hints of molasses. The taste really doesn't bring much cherry flavor at all. Really, I can't detect it, and it was faint enough in the nose. The taste does bring some Belgian yeasty esters and some caramel. Good, sturdy body that is slightly creamy. Not nearly as complex as I'd like to see, but pretty good overall.

Photo of brentk56
4.33/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Appearance: Pours a cloudy russet color with ruby highlights and a thick head of beige foam; leaves a smattering of lacing here and there

Smell: Cherries jump out, with hints of chocolate and caramel; also, some rum-soaked dried dark fruit and a strand of red licorice

Taste: Starts out with a touch of caramel sweetness with the chocolate and tart cherry flavors quickly making their presence known; in the middle, the tart lambic flavors build to a crescendo; amazing how balanced this brew stays..never too sweet nor too sour; finishes with a woody tone

Mouthfeel: Medium bodied with moderate level of carbonation

Overall: A distinctive beer that is always worth re-visiting

Photo of BEERchitect
4.2/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A quite terrific American rendition to a Belgian Quad. Pours a viscous brown-ish red with golden highlights. Dainty white, fizzy head that fades quickly, but laces well. Smells sweetly with caramel, fruits, and spices. Tastes big on malt, and mildly caramelly, brown sugary, fig-ey, date-ey, and cherry-ey. Sweet spices of clove, corriander, pepper, and estery. Becomes more alcoholic through the body. Sweet and powdery finish. A good Belgian replica. A great buy for the buck.

Photo of StonedTrippin
4.1/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

one of the best, a real unique quad. the beer pours a hazy and pale red to brown color, with a huge rising white head courtesy of the belgian yeast. the nose is very complex, some chocolate, sour cherry, funky yeast, and spices. i taste cherry first, but it isnt sweet or sour, sort of neutral in terms of feel, layered in is cocoa powder, peppery yeast, and some brown sugar. lots going on here, and i feel like this beer may have changed a little over the years. real bright mouthfeel, lots of bubbles and a surprisingly dry finish for a bigger and sweeter beer. the alcohol content is barely perceptible at all. overall this is much different than most quads ive come across, and one of the classic beers from the state of new york. id be happy to make a night on this, really tasty, and i figure more out about it each time i enjoy one. not to be missed.

Photo of Phyl21ca
3.78/5  rDev -8.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Bottle: Poured a dark burgundy color ale with a large off-white foamy head with good retention. Aroma of subtle sour cherries with big strong malt. No hint of yeast, which is little surprising for a Belgian style ale. Taste is sweeter then expected with a strong malt body and a hint of kriek lambic at the end. Body is above average and alcohol is well hidden. I would appreciate a bit more complexity but this is still a very enjoyable beer.

Photo of Knapp85
3.53/5  rDev -14.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

This beer poured out as a nice looking brown color with some red highlights. The head was a bit foamy at first but settles quickly. The smell of the beer was lightly acidic but had a sweet fruity quality too. The the taste was a little tart upfront but then shifted into a yeasty dark fruit sweetness. The mouthfeel was decent and and drinkable. Overall I would drink it again, especially now that it comes in 12oz. bottles.

Photo of largadeer
4/5  rDev -3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

2005 vintage, poured into an oversized wine glass.

A - Burgundy-colored, with a formidable head that dissipates into a light cake on the surface.

S - Spicy/sweet alcohol, chocolate, and cherries of course. Kind of reminds me of those alcoholic chocolate covered cherries (go figure).

T - Exceptionally mellow and smooth, like a nice cognac. The cherry lambic is pretty subdued in this bottle; it's there in the background, adding a bit of tart sourness, but it's blended evenly with flavors of dark chocolate, brown sugar and vanilla. I'm curious to see if the kriek is more prominent in fresher bottles. I would guess that aging mellows out the lambic and blends the flavors a bit.

M - On the fuller side of medium-bodied. The long-lasting head gives it some creaminess. This is a rich, heavy, filling beer.

D - Surprisingly good considering how rich and alcoholic it is, largely thanks to the rather mellow flavor.

Photo of BuckeyeNation
4.48/5  rDev +8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

"Character is determined more by the lack of certain experiences than by those one has had."

--Friedrich Nietzsche


"Do what is right though the world may perish."

--Emmanuel Kant


"To dare is to lose one's footing momentarily. Not to dare is to lose oneself."

--Soren Kierkegaard


Brewed 2004. Softly glowing coral with ripe orange trim, a beautiful color that reminds me of a tropical sunset in a glass. The Belgianesque head is at least as gorgeous as the beer with its tangerine caramel color and its sticky, whipped frothiness. A meager amount of lace is the only thing keeps the appearance from perfection.

The aroma is musty and funky and spicy and herbal and all kinds of interesting; I just wish that it was more cherry-like. I would never have guessed that that particular fruit was added if it didn't say so on the label. My hope is that the cherry lambic will be more evident on the palate than it is in the nose.

This is fabulous beer! I haven't had too many quadrupels yet, but I've had enough to know what to expect. Three Philosophers is an excellent version with the added benefit of sour cherries. There's so much complexity here that my mouth doesn't know where to start, it just wants to enjoy for a while.

The malt is on the border between heavily toasted and lightly roasted, delivering such flavors as dark toffee, plum pudding, rum-soaked figs and even a little dark chocolate. Can't forget the black cherries. And the raisins. And the ground clove. This beer tastes like liquified dark Christmas fruitcake. It can't possibly become more delicious with warming, can it?

I wish now that I had poured the beer into a snifter. It deserves to be philosophized over because I'm sure that the meaning of life is in here somewhere. I'm enjoying the tartness provided by the cherry lambic, but am glad that it wasn't added with a heavier hand. No sense in turning this stately beer into a cherry fruit beer with quadrupel accents.

The body/mouthfeel is the best of both worlds. There's enough malt on hand to give the beer a mouthfillingness and a finishing stickiness, yet the energetic amount of carbonation keeps things brisk and amazingly supple. Drinkability didn't need any help, but was provided with it anyway by virtue of an outstanding mouthfeel.

I need to revisit what Brewery Ommegang has to offer since I reviewed most of their regular offerings prior to knowing what the hell I was tasting. Still though, it's hard to believe that anything in their oeuvre can compare to Three Philosophers. This is a stunning creation that was a steal at only $5.99 per bottle. I'm seriously considering buying a case because I'm sure that this nectar will age like a dream. Highly recommended.

Photo of mikesgroove
4.6/5  rDev +10.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

2006 vintage bottle, the cave aged edition, I could not wait to dig into this one. It had been sitting in my fridge for what seemed like forever waiting for me to get close to it. Decided to pop it open the other night. Served chilled and poured into a snifter, this one was consumed on 12/05/2008.

The pour was very nice with a rich brown color that was loaded down with ruby highlights that abounded. Huge off white head rose up from the depths and clung to the sides of the glass for what seemed like forever before finally settling back down and relaxing.

The aroma was rich, nice notes of dark fruity yeast, hints of swet cherry notes and an herbal tone that prickled at the nose quite nicely. Rich malts lying underneath provided a nice level of sweetness. The flavor was about as big and rich as you could get. Most of the alcohol was well hidden under rich fruit notes. Huge flavor here that dissolves and transforms with each passing sip. Nice touches of cherry and unique sour notes. Smooth, incredibly smooth with a rich carbonation and velvet like touch to it.

Overall an outstanding beer that was much more tame then the regular version and just a thing of beauty. I was very glad to have tried this one, very glad indeed.

Photo of biboergosum
4/5  rDev -3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

750ml caged and corked, solid bottle, 2011 edition.

This beer pours, after an ethereal snaking of post-pop ethereal smoke, a dark, hazy, red brick colour, with one finger of loosely foamy off-white head, which wisps away rather quickly, leaving a few specks of wayward clouds in the way of lace.

It smells of sweet bready malt, with hints of cherry cough syrup, a sturdy dark fleshy black fruitiness, some middling bready caramel malt, and soft notes of salty licorice. The taste is caramel/toffee malt, one readily consumed by a wallop of sassy dark fruit (plums and prunes, mostly), all mildly sour in their bearing, a subtle yeastiness, more Halls-esque medicinal cherry, some almost hidden clove notes, with the big-boy ABV quite well obfuscated.

The carbonation is quite sedate, just an updraft here and there, the body a plucky medium weight, and innocuously smooth. It finishes rather off-dry, the fruity malt the life of the party, and Big Cherry the ringleader.

Well, at only 2% of the blend, the cherry kriek component does well to represent, spurring other thoughts of comparative low number, high value providers in our cultural midst - I only somewhat kid. I sense here a decent ode to a strong Belgian dark ale, but going all upstart colony with the cherry juicing gag. Once past the academic firsties, I can say that they've succeeded in their melange of traditional Belgian flavours - my oblivious initial confusion slowly turns to gentle appreciation.

Photo of emerge077
4/5  rDev -3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Recently put on tap at Four Moon Tavern in Chicago.

Attractive argyle-pattern tap handle is recognized immediately as Ommegang, a slightly different color scheme than Hennepin, very classy. Pours with a small head into a tiny 3 Philosophers chalice. I'm guessing 10 oz., but wouldn't be surprised if it was 8 oz. Color glints ruby red through a chestnut body. Some lacing as this kiddie goblet is drained.

Aroma of Belgian yeast, malt, and stewed cherries. Kind of funky, it's restrained but nice enough.

Caramel toffee flavors, black cherry, low bitterness in the finish is the only indication of hops in the finish. Medium bodied with perceivable drying alcohol. It's about what I remember from the bottle I had a year or so ago. Not my favorite from Ommegang, but worth trying if you find it on tap.

Photo of oberon
4.55/5  rDev +9.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

2003 version here,pours a nice chesnut brown with a real creamy head that lleaves very nice lacing,aroma ismalty sweet with a slight spicey note with candied sugar very evident.A very nice rounded beer taste wise softly sweet with some spicieness with the cherry taste that lingers in the background,wow what a great tasting beer!I could drink this pretty potent brew all night!

Photo of womencantsail
3.93/5  rDev -5.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Bottle from 2009

A: The pour is a hazed dark amber color with a finger and a half worth of fluffy tan head.

S: Smells like slightly tart cherries and cherry pie. There's some nice caramel and toffee notes as well. A touch of chocolate malt, raisins, and plums, too.

T: A definite alcohol taste to begin with which is followed by cherry skins, raisins, and plum skins. There's a nice maltiness that I would describe as toffee, and a bit of brown sugar. The same subtle chocolate character that was present on the nose.

M: The body is medium with a moderate carbonation.

D: Not quite as boozy and overly intense as I remember, but something I'd still have a bit of trouble drinking a significant quantity of.

Photo of zeff80
4.3/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

2006 Version -- poured into a chalice
A - Poured out a dark brown color with a foamy, tan, two-finger head. Left a little lacing.

S - It smelled of malt and cherries. It also had a spicy smell. Alcohol aroma was present, too.

T - It tasted of malt and cherry. Very sweet. It also had a hint of hop spiciness.

M - Mouthfeel was soft and smooth. It is a heavy-bodied beer.

D - This is a fasinating beer. I love the kriek taste added to a quadrupel.

Photo of TMoney2591
3.8/5  rDev -8.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Served in a GameWorks shaker pint glass.

Another brew I felt I had to revisit. It pours a ruby-tinted russet topped by a finger of ecru foam. The nose is a menage-a-trois of black cherries, rye bread, and dried wheat. The taste begins with the wheat, burnt this time, then moves into a solid helping of slightly medicinal cherry. If it weren't for that bit o' cough medicine, this would have been great. The body is a stolid medium, with a light carbonation and a somewhat sticky feel. Overall, a solid outing, but falls a bit short of gem status.

Photo of nickfl
3.82/5  rDev -8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A - Pours with one finger of off white foam on top of a slightly hazy, amber brown body. The head settles quickly and leaves nice lace.

S - An aroma of tart cherries and spicy caramel malt.

T - Tart pie cherries up front with some sweet caramel. The caramel is joined in the middle by toasted grain and spicy yeast. Clove and coriander notes remain though the finish with some increasingly medicinal cherry.

M - medium body, moderate carbonation, and a balanced finish.

D - This certainly isn't a drain pour, but I am kind of disappointed. I hadn't had this beer in a couple of years and I remembered it being much better than this. The aroma is spot on, but the flavor is dissonant and unpleasant. The spicy yeast character seems inappropriate for a dark belgian and it clashes with the cherry. Maybe it its just that this beer is better in the bottle or maybe it has lost something in the last couple of years, but it seems like a shadow of what I remember it as.

Photo of NeroFiddled
4.27/5  rDev +2.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

750ml bottle, corked and caged. A carefull pour renders a clear, reddish-brown body with crimson and orange highlights. An off-white, creamy but short-lived head leaves only very minor lace (possibly due to the high level of alcohol, or maybe the need for some more conditioning). The nose displays dark fruit (raisins, fig) and some alcohol. The medium body is lightened by a moderate, but still gently effervescent (very fine bubbled), carbonation. True to the description on the label, the flavor is rich with raisins and pears; as well as some apricot and slightly tart apple. It's mildly sweet maltiness also lends a nutty quality (hazelnut?) that becomes more obvious in the finish. The alcohol is noticeable, but far from intrusive. It finishes dry with some residual sweet fruity malt. Quite enjoyable. Worth trying.

Photo of TheManiacalOne
3.75/5  rDev -9.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

2004 release acquired with the help of howl1309, so a big "Thank You" goes out him. Poured from a 750ml bottle into a snifter glass.

A: The beer is a deep dark reddish brown color, with a short off-white head that fades slowly and leaves a thick lace on the glass.

S: The aroma is of cherries, caramel, brown sugar, some spice, roasted malts & Belgian yeast.

T: The taste likewise has a strong burst of sour cherries that is tempered by the sweetness of caramel & brown sugar. There's a good Belgian yeast background and a hearty malt character. The hops presence is very mild as to be expected any beer that's 5-years-old and particularly in this style. The after-taste is slightly sour.

M: Crisp and smooth, medium body, medium carbonation, slightly sticky finish.

D: Flavorful, goes down easily, not too filling, strong kick, good representation of style, it's a good high-powered Belgian that adds the tartness of a lambic. Five years might have been a little too long for this one, but it's still worth drinking for a long time.

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Three Philosophers Belgian Style Blend (Quadrupel) from Brewery Ommegang
93 out of 100 based on 5,867 ratings.