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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5,494 Ratings

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Ratings: 5,494
Reviews: 1,940
rAvg: 4.14
pDev: 11.84%
Wants: 242
Gots: 799 | FT: 17
Brewed by:
Brewery Ommegang visit their website
New York, United States

Style | ABV
Quadrupel (Quad) |  9.70% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 04-23-2002)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 5,494 | Reviews: 1,940 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of bamadog
4.22/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Finally picked up a 12 oz. bottle of this to try. I've had a 2008 750 mL in my closet for a while now and was wondering when a good time to crack it would be, so I figured this would at least give me some frame of reference. Review is from notes taken on 5/15/2010 and poured from the bottle to a tulip.

Appearance: Pour is a deep dark mahogany with ruby highlights; starts with a massive 3 finger light tan (cinnamon colored) head with solid retention that takes a while to fade; body is hard to see through, but it shows moderately strong carbonation; a nice, nearly full curtain of lacing is left behind.

Smell: Sweet Belgian-style candi malts with wonderful dark and rich spiciness; there are deep and dark fruits as well, like raisins, plums and figs; nice caramel maltiness and a bit of a tart cherry scent; at the end of whiff, there's a definite presence of an alcoholic vapor, but at 9.8%, this should be expected.

Taste: What a wonderful quad, and I'm sorry that I've waited this long to sample it. The tart cherries are definitely present, as well as deep, dark caramel malts with strong hints of chocolate and sweet dark fruits; nice Belgian yeast and spiciness (coriander); definite presence of alcohol; the bottle is from 2009, and I may give my '08 another year to let it mellow out a bit more, but even if I didn't, I'd still really enjoy it.

Mouthfeel: Body is of medium weight; a thick, moist and sticky coating hangs on the roof of the mouth; a warm drying vaporous air is left, leaving the cheeks tingly and the belly especially warm; carbonation is soft and smooth.

Drinkability: While I really enjoyed all the aspects about this beer, it sits a tad heavy and the higher ABV definitely made itself known by the end. I really think 12 oz. is a great serving size of this as it allows for moderate indulgence, so when I do crack my '08, it will HAVE to be in the presence of friends.

Photo of hbis2gut
3.48/5  rDev -15.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

I'm a big fan of this brewery, but this particular offering falls a bit flat for me. There's something particularly cloying to me in the aftertaste. It claims a small percentage of cherry added, but I don't pick that up at all. I think some tartness or sourness could really perk up or balance the heavy malt character.

Granted, I don't know if "Quadruple" is even a real category, and if so, whether or not this fits the style. It's simply ok. The flagship and the Hennepin are far better.

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

Pours a cloudy amber brownish color with large off-white fluffy head and good lacing. lots of fizzy carbonation. smell a slight floral, fruity, hoppy smell. cherries are very apparent in the smell and taste. carmel nutty malt hints as well, very sweet. sour chalky and slightly bitter finish. medium body and creamy texture. fantastic beer i was very impressed with. waited a while to try this beer because it is available everywhere i go for beer. i will most definitely be purchasing this fantastic brew again in the near future.

Photo of TheGordianKnot
4.18/5  rDev +1%
look: 5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A- I almost couldn't believe how beautiful the color of this beer was. A very dark amber/maroon colors that looked so dark and mysterious, yet delicious, it made me want to dive right in. The head was nice and creamy with great lacing. This beer's appearance beckoned me to delve further...

S- Has a very warming smell with a deep sweet malty aroma. The most prominent distinction of smell though came from a very dry wine/cherry-like aroma that most likely came from the high alcohol and 2% kriek

T/M- Taste is very similar to smell but with much more alcohol than the nose alluded to, I was quite surprised actually. The malts come through in the full body with a very strong cherry flavor throughout the entire experience. The aftertaste settles from a cherry to an oak or other woody taste that subdues nicely and balances out the whole tongue and feel...

D- This beer is good, but I'm glad I shared this two others. I usually compare all categories of my reviews I can to other beers of the same style, but this is my first quad- so I must say, I'm not sure how this one should drink per the style. With that said, I would love to have again (quite often actually!) but will always make sure I have someone else to enjoy with me!

Photo of omnigrits
4.18/5  rDev +1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

750ml bottle into a tulip.

A rich, dark colour. not quite opaque, with a typical Belgian style head and plenty of lace. The aroma is sweet and malty; there's a hint of the cherries within. It almost reminds me of my favourite cough syrup from when I was a kid, but nowhere near as medicinal. Taste is a little on the sweet side for my palate, but I'm sure that if I was pairing this with a dessert or some fine cheese I'd enjoy it a whole lot more. This is a very well made beer to be sure.

Photo of htomsirveaux
3.9/5  rDev -5.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

750 mL bottle tried 8 Dec 2009. Gift from L&D, thanks!

Served in a 0.4 L Steiner Pils snifter. Cork comes out with a big 'POP'! Thick full amber head, well carbonated, very effervescent. Dark russet brown color. Smells like brown suagr and tart cherries, but overall aroma is light. Starts with molasses and dried fruit, dates, prues. Finishes herbal, caramel and with a fair amount of heat from the ethanol. Light to medium body.

Would definitely get this one again.

Photo of Zekezilla
3.73/5  rDev -9.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Appearance-2 finger head, didn't linger. Not much lacing either. I'm torn on this beer, overall. I had very high expectations based on what I've read a/b this brewery but I'm a little disappointed. The taste is good (cherries, raisins, warmth) but the booziness in the taste is just too prominent for me to really enjoy it. As others have mentioned, this one is definitely a sipper and best with food.

Photo of BabyBastard
3.75/5  rDev -9.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3.5

Picked out one of my '09 bottles to review. Cork and caged, pours into chalice very dark brownish red, hazy with not much head and spotty lacing. Given, this was the initial pour, and it is slightly chilled.

This has a strange, sour smell, predominately cherry in nature. Surprising considering the 2% addition, but it is very pronounced. Too me, this has a hard liquor scent, very strong alcohol in the nose, though it is still slightly chilled. Who knows, this may calm itself as it warms a bit. We will see. Dark malts and cherries, slight bit of sugary sweetness also present in the nose, though it's overwhelmed by this hot alcohol nose.

Taste has that odd cherry front, followed by a nice, malt backbone. Not overly sweet on the palate, though a bit of sweetness can be detected on aftertaste. This sweetness seems to be washed away with the alcohol burn, shortly after consumption. Not a major burn, more like a gentle, warming of the stomach once it hits. Still, crazy how the 2% of cherries can add such a pronounced, cherry flavour to this brew. Not unpleaseant, if you like cherries, but may be a bit too much for some who are not used to the whole "cherry" thing. It is good, in my opinion.

Feel is very unlively. Not much carbonation to be had, and agitation of the brew does not seem to help much. Feels a bit flat on the palate, though it may just be my bottle. Still, this is smooth, not sticky or oily in the least, and a very easy drinker, if you can get past the up front cherry characteristics of the ale. Drinkability is slightly above the average for me, though I'll keep the rest of my bottles for evaluation further down the road. My opinion, if you see this one, give it a shot.

Photo of BARFLYB
3.13/5  rDev -24.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

2009 12oz bottle into a tulip style glass in the late afternoon of a sunday. This was one of my 1st craft beers around eight years ago.

Hisss as the cap was pryed off, three philosophers pours out a mixture of muddy waters brown sprinkled with some red spots from the cherry addition. As the liquid reached 1/2 way up top a dark beige head exploded upwards looking beautiful. Straggely lace.

On first whiffs, it's apparent this quad was not made in Belgium, It's just not sweet enough for all that. There is a nice mixture of sweet malt, cherries, plums, chocolate, nuts and alcohol. This is a freshie so the alcohol I kinda expected. Seems to meld better with warming.

Im first greeted by a malt blast that's kinda sweet kinda caramele kinda whatever. After that the cherries poke their heads through giving off a cherry pie vibe. It's amazing the amount of cherries come through from just a 2% addition. A bit of chocolate but for some reason the residual sugar vibe I get out of foreign quads is lost altogether. 3P needs more sugar, preferably the turbinado kind.

Feels a bit thin for the style, I would say it's a healthy medium with a low amount of carb. Im used to low carbed quads so there is that. Small bursts of alcohol in spots depending how I swish it in the mouth, but no heat of any kind.

I think I know why I have not had this in awhile, it's just underwhelming in many area's andI remember those same thoughts from years ago. It's pretty drinkable but after 6oz's or so I was pretty much done with it. The bottle says this is ageable for up to five years, but I don't see this getting any better, it's just not that complex enough as it is.

Photo of JBogan
2.78/5  rDev -32.9%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Poured a dark brown with reddish tint. Small off white head which left minimal lacing.

The aroma was of malt, cherry and alcohol.

The taste followed the smell, yet wasn't as satisfying. The cherries gave it a cloying sweetness which I found too much to take after less than half the bottle was gone.

The mouthfeel was nothing special. Somewhat thin and lifeless.

Overall I was quite disappointed in this beer. it seemed to be yet another example of a non Belgian brewer trying to make a Belgian style beer and coming up well short. I might try this again at some point, but won't be in any hurry.

Photo of theboozecruise
4.18/5  rDev +1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Picked this one up on a trip to Houston... poured it from the 22 oz. bottle into a Chimay goblet. It's a murky reddish brown color... creamy off-white head with great retention. Certainly looks good!

It smells of fruit... cherries and raisins primarily. There's a hint of floral note behind the fruit aromas. The taste is fruity as well... sweeter up front and slightly bitter towards the end. The alcohol presence is noted on the tongue slightly but not overpowering. A melon flavor comes out as well as some of the cherry flavors. One of the more wine-esque beers I've tried recently.

Not a bad beer at all, but far from my favorite Belgian quad style ale. Seems to be lacking a little malt balance in there.

Photo of milesfan76
4.3/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Had this today at University Pizzeria in Youngstown. I love this place. Poured in a Weizen Glass (I know, not optimum for this style, but that's what they had.)

A: Pours a translucent reddish-brown. About a three finger whitish head that lasts and lasts.

S: Malt and caramel, a touch of cherry. Could be stronger in the smell.

T: Cherries are the first thing I notice- not overly tart, not too sweet either. Caramel and malts follow. Cherries become even more prominent as the beer warms. Nice.

M: A little thin for a quad, probably due to the kriek blended in. Carbonation is good.

D: Obviously, if I hadn't had another 9+% beer before this one, it wouldn't have hit me so hard. Still, though, one big bottle will be plenty under most circumstances.

Yeah, I like this one.

Photo of KickInTheChalice
3.85/5  rDev -7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

2008 bottle poured into a tulip.

Appearance: Pours a dark burgundy / cherry color with a thick, off white head. Nearly opaque, but some bubbles visibly rise to the top of the glass. Decent head retention with some lace stick.

Smell: Dark fruits power the olfaction, primarily cherry. Surprisingly sugary malt on the nose as well. Alcohol is present, along with a slightly medicinal nature.

Taste: Caramel malt sweetness up front, quickly followed by sweet and tart cherries. Alcohol bursts through, and a tart cherry / medicinal flavor ends the sip. Alcohol lingers in the aftertaste. The 2008 is more mellow, with nearly no hop presence to note.

Mouthfeel: Medium carbonation, a little bit creamy in the middle as well. It loses its carbonation as it warms, although the character becomes somewhat deeper. Warming.

Drinkability: A sipper. The tart cherry taste provides an interesting foil to the style. Aftertaste limits viability of having more than one or two. Probably better to have paired, than alone, as I did.

Photo of keithmurray
4.03/5  rDev -2.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

75ml poured into a chalice

appearance is a deep mahogany brown with beige head that lasts

aroma - i'm picking up caramel, cherries, malt,

flavor - cherries, malt, caramel, tobacco

mouthfeel - good carbonation on this full bodied, smooth, sweet but not overwhelmingly so

drinkability - at nearly 10%, one bottle should suffice

Photo of BricksandPorter
3.58/5  rDev -13.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

2009 poured into a tulip after 3 days at 40F.

Pour - Walnut brown with a deep ruby hue. Head is a yellowish brown, lacy and of medium thickness. Bubbles are tiny and head is smooth. Quick pour.

Nose - sweet, earthy aroma. kind of fruity and heavy alcohol.

Taste - crisp, clean wheatiness combines with a heavy berry flavor. Not much malt sweetness, but LOTS of fruit. Prolonged bitterness on the finish reminds me of a port wine or a peaty scotch. Very organic, very sweet, and a great hop.

Mouthfeel - smooth, sweet and very silky. Almost a creaminess to it. Aftertaste is mellow and inviting. A very good ale.

Drinkability - too sweet and fruity to be a session beer for me, and WAY too much alcohol. My whiskey days are over and this beer is a testament to why!

Photo of ThreeWiseMen
4.05/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

2009 bottle poured into a Chimay goblet.

Appearance: Opened like champagne - cork bounced off the ceiling! A rich, foamy, off-white head sits on top and retains very well thanks to some hefty carbonation. Body is cloudy and reddish brown, barely allowing light through. Each sip coats the wall in thick, frothy lacing, though that lacing doesn't have much staying power.

Smell: Tart cherries, doughy malts, and potpourri-like esters. Honeysuckel and some sort of mild citrus also peak through. Cinnamon? Not as complex as I had hoped. Still pleasant; very smooth.

Taste: Dough, lemon, white pepper, red currants, caramel, and earth. Finishes on a strong, cherry schnapps note. Lots of phenols in this on - dang! Not a huge fan of this beer, but it's certainly bold and interesting.

Mouthfeel: Carbonation is fantastic: active but very soft; tons of minute bubbles caress the palate. Foamy when swished. Finishes very dry and warm, leaving a good deal of alcohol in the aftertaste.

Drinkability: This got better and better as time went on. I like fuller, more chocolaty quads better, but this was nice.

Photo of Imsothirsty
4.18/5  rDev +1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

On tap at the Pour House

Dark slightly reddish, with a slim tan head.

Smell is pretty solid, malty and a little fruity, couldn't detect much alcohol but I know it's there.

Taste is a moce blend of flavors which has quite a long finish. First thing I taste is like Molasses, followed by bourbon notes and then some fruit and slightly bitter towards the finish followed by BAM lots of alcohol.

Mouthfeel is much smoother than I expected, just a little tingly carbonation. Right down the middle neither heavy nor light.

Drinkability wise, the alcohol was hitting me a little too hard for me to want more than 1 additional serving.

Photo of AgentMunky
4.28/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 5

Poured from a 750 mL bottle into a goblet.

A: This looks fantastic. A rich-dark red-brown beer with about two fingers of head and small bubble trails up the sides of the glass. Beautiful lacing.

S: Malty fruits (the label suggests cherries) dominate the nose, with a background spiciness and a tinge of alcohol. Very complex, very pleasant.

T: Hmm, a difficult beer to describe. It tastes of alcohol laced with fruit, or maybe fruits soaked in alcohol. The sweetness is met by some slight bitterness, on which I can't quite put my finger -- maybe tea or some herb? Mildly sour aftertaste, but in a good way, as with wine.

M: Perhaps the weakest point of this otherwise excellent brew, but not much bad to say. Much lighter than I anticipated, little carbonation. Unlike some quads, there is no stickage or film in the mouth, something I miss. It is, if anything, too clean a mouthfeel for my taste.

D: Exceptional. The complexity of the beer is engaging, keeping me smelling and sipping. The surprising lightness of taste allows many such sips to continue. I will definitely be picking up more Three Philosophers.

Photo of Cubsfan1087
4.13/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Three Philosophers Belgian Style Blend is a fairly complex beer. It is like a fruity Belgian beer, maybe even similar to a lambic. There is definitely a fruity aroma with this beer. The taste isn't has sweet has I expected, can definitely tell there is 9.8% alcohol in this beer. A very decent beer, probably not my favorite though.

Photo of WhatsNewinBooze
4.22/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This has alwyas been one of my favorite belgium style quadrupel. Pours a dark reddish brown with a fine khaki head. Aromas of cherries, sweet malts and chocolate. The palate is sweet and malty with flavors of dark cherries, plums, and oatmel. I just have one more 2009 release that I hope to age for a few years, it will be itneresting how this develops in the bottle over time.

Photo of phiberoptik
4.05/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Shared with my wife in wine glasses at Terry's Turf Club... the best burger in Ohio according to Food Network.

I followed a Dogfish Head 90min IPA with this so my tastebuds had been drenched in hops before hand.

This beer could be a dessert to me. You definitely taste the cherry notes but nothing overbearing of stand-offish at all. Creamy head that hangs around for a while. Sweet smell and heavy on flavor. I wish I could comment more but maybe I will edit this after my next experience with it.

Photo of taxguyjase
3.7/5  rDev -10.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Appearance - A really foamy, light almond head starts off the beer and sticks around the side of the glass for a good few minutes. The beer itself is a dark amber color, opaque in the lower 4.0/5.0

Smell - A sweet malt aroma is the key scent of this brew. True to the ingredients in it, you can get some tart cherry in the nose. 3.5/5.0

Taste - Definitely a Belgian beer with all of the spices that I would expected in a Dubbel/Trippel/Quadrepel beer, but the tart and mildly sweet cherry flavor (which isn't overpowering - you're not drinking a cider here) adds a very different spin. It subdues the normal spiciness of the Belgian beer, then adds a level of tartness that finishes off each taste. While highly alcoholic, you can't taste it... 4.0/5.0

Feel - Smooth at the beginning and end, but really sharp flavor in the middle. Finishes clean and doesn't have really anything to speak of for an aftertaste. - 4.0/5.0

Drinkability - While an interesting beer, not quite my type of beer. - 3.0/5.0

Photo of metter98
4.33/5  rDev +4.6%
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 TCHopCraver
3.73/5  rDev -9.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3

Review is from notes taken on 2/10/10.

A: Poured into an over-sized wine glass. Showed a deep mahogany color with an off-white/brownish colored 2-finger head. There was a bit of a reddish tint in the body from the 2% Kriek. Light lacing on the glass disappeared after a bit.

S: Lots of raisin, fig, fig newton (tehe) with a hearty yeast character supporting the fruitiness. There was an unmistakable aroma of maraschino cherries in the background. I don't really care for maraschinos, but it was not a dominant smell, so it didn't offend me that much. A caramel sweetness was also evident, and as the beer warmed, the cherry smell faded and some alcohol notes appeared.

T: Big, rich malt taste. I have to say that the fake cherry taste was just a little too much for me. There was, however, a pretty good balance between the fruity (raisin, fig) sweetness and a spicy, clean finish from the yeast and hops. The good fruit flavors became the dominant taste as the beer warmed.

M: Nice, full, tingly feel. It really nailed all of my taste buds and warmed my palate.

D: I like a lot about this beer, but that darned maraschino cherry flavor was just too heavy in the flavor mix for me. I shared the 1 pint, 9.4 oz. with my girlfriend and I'm not sure I would want much more than that.

Photo of ncfranklin
3.28/5  rDev -20.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Poured into a small goblet.

A : Gorgeous. Love this blood red to burnt orange appearance.There is just something very alluring about this tone.

S : We start with a little rich malt smell, and slowly flow into a strong lambic of seemingly cherry. Fitting of the color, and enjoyable. Not overly powerful however, the only lacking quality.

T : Follows the smell almost to a tee. Malty start, the hint of the fruit lambic pokes in, but it quickly resides into a warming alcohol burn. Nothing, overly stands out again.. which is a negative in my book, but might be a plus to someone who wants a more complex flavor.

M : Medium, especially for a Quad. As it sticks around, the tingling says hi.

D : Despite the high ABV%, and the obvious presence of it in the taste, this one is relatively cheerful on the way down. You won't be gulping it, but its complexity intends it to be sipped in the first place.

Overall, this isn't my favorite beer because I prefer stronger prominent flavors. However, I can appreciate its subtly and use of lambic as a mix to create something unique, if not muddled. Something everyone should probably at least try.

Three Philosophers Belgian Style Blend (Quadrupel) from Brewery Ommegang
92 out of 100 based on 5,494 ratings.