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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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5,595 Ratings

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Ratings: 5,595
Reviews: 1,964
rAvg: 4.14
pDev: 11.84%
Wants: 255
Gots: 903 | FT: 18
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: 5,595 | Reviews: 1,964 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of Duff27
4.1/5  rDev -1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured a 12 ounce bottle into a tulip.

A- Deep reddish brown. Can see the carbonation rising. Luscious foamy head with some lacing evident. Looks wonderful!

S- "Fresh" bubble gum. Hint of cherries and raisins.

T- More fruitiness...hits the spot. can taste the alcohol but not too over powering.

M- Slightly syrupy, nice and creamy.

D/O- This would be a good beer (in a bomber) to have in celebration of something big. Drinking almost should be focused on this beer and this beer alone...meaning after this one anything else would seem to disappoint.

My first Quad...thanks Kirk from work!

Photo of Agold
3.94/5  rDev -4.8%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This beer is a dark reddish garnet color with a small amount of just off white head. The beer smells of Belgian yeast, plums, and a bit of cherries. The fruityness is what is most prevalent in the taste of this beer. Plums and dried cherries dominate. The alcohol is very well hidden. Good medium to heavy mouthfeel with solid carbonation. A good drinkable belgian beer with definite replay value.

Photo of adam42381
4.27/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

2009 Release. Poured from a 12 oz. bottle into a Chimay goblet. Packaged on 12/21/09. Best by 12/2014.

Appearance: Pours an opaque chocolate brown with a 1/2 finger foamy white head which dissipates almost instantly. No lacing. A little disappointing.

Smell: Dried fruits with cherries being the most dominant. Just a hint of alcohol in the background.

Taste: Delicious flavor which mixes sweet dried fruits and spices. The alcohol is evident at the finish and provides a nice warming sensation. Mildly phenolic aftertaste.

Mouthfeel: Medium-to-full-bodied with a good amount of carbonation and a mild alcohol bite.

Drinkability: Very high drinkability, especially considering the very high ABV. This is one to drink slowly and savor.

Overall: An excellent beer overall. The style doesn't get much better if it's not brewed in Belgium.

Photo of comfortablynumb1
3.68/5  rDev -11.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a 750ml (2010) into a Stone Brewery pint glass...

A - Pours burgundy with a three finger tan head. Decent head retention with this one. Very nice...

S - Lots of fruits come through in the smell. Cherries, plums, and other dark friuts. Also detect a hint of alcohol...

T - Cherries, dark berries, plums, and raisins. Ends with an alcoholic bite that is not overwhelmingly strong, but you do taste the abv. Wish I would of aged this one for a while...

M - Medium bodied with a good amount of carbonation...

D - Enjoyed this one, but was a little boozy for my likings. Next time, I will age this one for a while before I pop it. Overall glad I finally got a chance to try this one though...


Photo of mstyne
3.95/5  rDev -4.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

2010 caged and corked bomber from Young's Pharmacy, NY 43.

Pours a really nice cloudy chestnut brown into a Unibroue goblet. Smell is sweet, yeasty and very, very 'belgian'.

Taste is fruity and malty, with a slight citrus twang. This is delicious, but definitely for sipping only. I've got to think I've tried this before, but I can't remember. I've yet to try something from Brewery Ommegang that I don't look forward to having again.

Then again, it helps when they're the home team. Well done, lads.

Photo of russwbeck
4.22/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A: Pours dark amber, hints of red, with a very small, but fluffy, off white head that laces down the cup.

S: Cherry and malty. Doesn't really mask the alcohol, but I don't mind it.

T: I'm getting cherries and malts, with some chocolate. A really enjoyable fruit beer that warms you as you drink it.

MF: Medium bodied with some carbonation.

D: I enjoy a bottle of this on certain occasions. Couldn't drink much more than that.

Photo of STEG
4.55/5  rDev +9.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Something special for my 100th review.

2005 Cave Aged Variant

Thanks to Theepieest for making this happen for me

Opens with a huge pop, pretty good for being almost 6 years old. Pours a red tinged deep brown into a ridel bourdeax oversized wine glass. Fluffy thin head rises and receeds quickly.

Smell begins with molasses and black cherry with a bit of black pepper at the back.

Taste has molasses cookie flavors, tart cherry and black raspberry and some light smoke as well. A general mustiness is also present.

Mouthfeel is light with moderate carbonation and a slight warming alcohol that starts mid-back way through and ends nicely. Slightly syrupy as well.

Drinkable given its percentage and mouthfeel, the cherriness has really mellowed out nicely and made it a nice addition to the great qualities this beer already posseses.

Photo of dcx10music
4.85/5  rDev +17.1%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 5

A - Opaque dark brown with hints of dark red when held up to the light. Minimal to no head.

S - A slight hint of booze, but that is quickly overtaken by a lovely aroma of dark chocolate and cherries.

T - Basically the same as the smell. The heat of the alcohol gives way to dark chocolate and cherry flavors, but lingers nicely. Absolutely fantastic.

M - Not horrible, but a little bit thin for my taste. For this kind of drink I'd rather have something that errs on the side of too thick than too thin.

D - Even at a high alcohol content, I would have no problem downing a whole bottle of this.

Notes - I'm not normally the biggest fan of Belgian ales, but I have yet to try an Ommegang brew that I don't like. This one is no exception.

Serving type: bottle

Photo of bierguru
3.35/5  rDev -19.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2

A - deep dark brownish with a hint of red pours with a thin white head which laces out

S - heavy cherry raisin malt smell

T- sweet of raisins cherries maybe even fig slight alcohol taste to it

M - smooth medium body with low carbonation

D - i suggest drinking it sip by sip if you dont like cherry beers i dont find they taste like robitussin this beer doesnt get they taste unless you drink it like you would any other beer

Photo of jhammel01
4.08/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

First Quad..

Pours a deep brown, almost maroon color. Looks fairly clouded but could just be due to the temp. Thick, dense egg white head, dissipates to clean lacing.

Grape esters on the nose, green apple, belgian yeast, Slight hop twang and some biscuit.

Wow, I fruity beer that I'm really enjoying! - Dark cherry sourness, biscuit, strong alcohol presence. Some bananna from the yeast. Cherries are dominant but very well done.

I dont usually like belgian beers this much but this is really, really nice.

Photo of haazer
2.59/5  rDev -37.4%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 2 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2

Poured 12 oz bottle into a tulip glass.

A- Ok, my fourth Ommegang review, maybe I poured it too slow? There was relatively no head whatsoever. The puny amount left dissapeared quickly. Good amount of carbonation. A nice hazy, maroon color.

S- Cherries, raisins, grapes. Very fruity. Pick up the alcohol after the aromas. Hints of malts, no hops evident.

T- The alcohol is not masked well at all. Very evident upfront. Warming. A slight hint of grapes and berries, but the alcohol is almost over bearing.

M- Very pungent, almost feels like drinking a wine. Does have a slight bready mouthfeel.

D- Deffinitely a sipper. The alcohol does mellow out very slightly as the beer warms. My mistake was probly serving it cold. But compared to other quads this one does not mask the booze well at all.

Notes: I feel like I need to review this one again. My other Ommegang experiences were good, I waited to try this one last because I love Quads. I gotta say, it looks like a quad, it smells like a quad, but it did not taste like one, or have the same mouthfeel. Maybe I poured it wrong and it lost a lot of the elements because this one had no head whatsoever. I have another one that I might age for a few months and review again. I refuse to believe this score, but it will have to do for now.

Photo of mexikrainian
4.2/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

750ml poured into a Duvel Green tulip glass.

Appearance: amber hazelnut with small off-white head and non-existent lacing.

Aroma: malty, cherries, tart and nuts.

Taste: malty, syrupy, and spicy with dry finish. acidic and phenolic with high ABV.

Mouthfeel: medium body with low carbonation

Overall impression: i love this beer! body, smell and flavor of a excellent quad style.

Photo of carpezytha
4.47/5  rDev +8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Deep amber, decent foam (poured vigorously), which fades.
S: Raisins and other dried dark fruit, roasted nuts.
T: Warm tincture of raisins, earth, cherry pits, even citrus and pepper.
M: Great mouthfeel- turbulent yet finishing smooth, not overly hot, enough barb to continue to bring forth new flavors.
D: Very drinkable on special occasions.
Delicious, syrupy concoction.

Photo of Offa
4.42/5  rDev +6.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

This is a wonderful beer with distinct cherry-fruit character but only one element in a complex, well-rounded whole.

Deep cloudy brownish red, it has a medium-big pale tan-orange head slowly shrinking to a thin foamy top.

Aroma is lots of wood and fruit (cherry and more), raisiny toasty caramelised plums, and hint of port.

Taste is zesty, sweetish with light spiciness, lots of fruit and port up front, light tartness in zesty finish with long woody-toasty grain and dried-fig-skin aftertaste.

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

A: Pours a moderately hazy, deep reddish-brown. The tall, fluffy head has a light caramel-tan color and medium density. Retention is pretty strong, and a good amount of foamy, sticky lace clings to the glass.

S: Some dusty, fruity sweetness is most noticeable in the nose. Cherry and raisin, some tangy, mildly phenolic spice, and sugar cookies are evident. Maybe a little bit of overripe pear also. A light alcoholic twang is also present, but not overwhelmingly so.

T: Sweet up front - sugar cookieish, with lighter toffee and caramel notes. Also quite fruity - raisins, figs, and of course, cherries. Lightly tart and spicy - phenols are mild, and there's more of a yeasty dustiness than anything else. Maybe a bit of clove flavor as well. There's also a bit of rumlike alcohol, and a faint nuttiness into the finish.

M: Medium-firm body. Carbonation is lightish and lends a pleasant smoothness and creaminess. A bit dry as well. Alcohol is warming but well-integrated.

D: A really nice brew from Ommegang. The cherry character is a bit understated, but that's generally a good thing in these types of beers. I wasn't blown away at any point, but I've enjoyed this beer.

Photo of jsprain1
4.47/5  rDev +8%

A- Hazy amber brown with a thin slightly tan head.
S- Smell is of dark fruits, cherries and figs particularly, some sweetness coming from the malt, and a bit of alcohol coming on through. Something about the alcohol didn't integrate well though.
T- This is an absolutely phenomenal flavor. Sweet of malt, but not overdone. The fruit aspect is spot on, with enough cherry, plum, and fig to make it super complex, without becoming distracting. Alcohol warmth in the finish.
M- Super smooth. A bit sticky and syrupy at first but a creamy smooth finish make the mouthfeel thoroughly enjoyable.
D- An absolutely top notch beer. This is one of my new favorites. The complexity of this one just propels it. A well made beer.

Photo of bum732
4.25/5  rDev +2.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

S: Dark fruits, raisins in particular, dark cherries, touch of belgian clove yeast, plums, touch of molasses, touch of bubblegum.

L: Cloudy amber brown, nice quarter inch head.

T: Belgian spice up front, wave of dark fruit. Med-low spicy bitterness followed by big wave of dark cherry fruitiness. Finishes with just a touch of roast and molasses like breadiness. Residual brown sugar on finish, fairly neutral.

M: Creamy mouthfeel, enough bitterness to pop the flavors. Carbonation is low.

A great interpretation of a Belgian quad, really loved how all the components came together.

Photo of ThePorterSorter
4.32/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This beer. So many things must be said to describe it while also doing it justice.

The three philosophers pours a definite dark amber and has a nice tan head. Flavors that come from this beer are dark and rare, I would recommend the warmer serving temperature of 50F.

First sip of this brew and I know that I'm drinking an incredible lambic. This beer has such character with strong caramel, cherry, and rhubarb all blended into a smooth and surprisingly drinkable beer.
The bite this beer provides, with such intense flavors and such a high ABV are exceptional and there is almost no visible weakness.

I am so impressed with the brewery and what the have to offer with the 3 philosophers. My first time trying it was at their brewery tour, however, there is a huge difference between tasting this beer in a 1oz. dixie cup vs. a full 12oz glass. This beer takes time to mellow and reveal its true character. You will not be disappointed with this beer.

Photo of bamojr
3.71/5  rDev -10.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

This pored into a chilled pint glass, with a red tinted color and nice white fluffy head, that holds for quite some time. the flavor is quite pleasant. The hint of cherry from the 2% Lambic makes for a great compliment to the ale they brewed. Being a fan of lambics my self, this makes for a excellent brew.

Photo of trf32
3.94/5  rDev -4.8%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

First of all, a discussion I had with my friend regarding this beer. I told him I got this Ommegang quad, and he says "Quad? So is that like 13% abv?" I said no, it's 9.8, and he responds "Are you sure it's not a Tripel?" I said that as far as I knew, the name just refers to the amount of malt used and the style of the beer, and some naming discretion is up to the brewer. Not to say this isn't an asskicker of a beer, but perhaps there is a decent argument to be made for it being considered more of a tripel. Anyway, it's just a name, so I'll review it like I'm expecting a dark, heavy, belgian ale. And that it certainly is.

A- Dark amber brown. Leaves a small tan head that retains alright.

S- The first thing I thought was "sherry-casked scotch." Then a smell came to me that reminded me of climbing the neighbors' sappy old cherry tree in the summer. I don't know if others had quite such an experience, but I think the aroma is a highlight of this brew.

T- Immediately after taking a sip, I recognize there is some deep complexity here that I might not be able to pick out. However, some flavors are certainly dominant. Immediately the burnt sugar rushes in, followed by cherries, cherries, and cherry pie. In fact, the cherries seem to be pretty much overpowering. The thick malt body is obvious, with the roasted malt character being the only sensation that tops the cherries, however the sticky sweet cherry taste remains much longer. Licking my lips, it tastes like... well, cherries.

M- This is a sipping drink. I took a big gulp just to see if it was a good idea... and it isn't. Sticky, sweet, and burnt; sip this after eating a meal, maybe with some chocolates or, um, cherries.

D- It's not fair to give this low marks here considering that "drinkability" is not really supposed to be a feature of this style. However, the intense cherry flavor makes this a drink that you'll probably only want one of even if you like to knock back a few huge, dark, complex malty ales in a row.

Photo of mralphabet
3.48/5  rDev -15.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

12 oz bottle poured into my St. Bernardus Chalice.

A: Cloudy brownish red in color with 1 fingers worth of tan colored head. Settles to a nice ring and wonderful lacing...

S: Fruity, tart cherries with a hint of caramel. Touch of sweet and tart.

T: Lots of dark fruits, but the cherries really pop here, runs to fine line of cough syrup.... the yeast is pulling it back... There is a slight alcohol burn... Aftertaste is pretty balanced.

M: Medium to heavy mouthfeel, smooth and kind of coats the palate. The carbonation is very slight and the finish is dry.

D: OK this is not a session beer... one and done. The cherry notes are heavy but not as bad as some cherry influence brews I've had. Overall worth looking up.... Not quite my cup of tea but other may love it.

Photo of drabmuh
3.65/5  rDev -11.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Beer poured into my Bruery tulip. Beer is brown to red and forms a thin off white head of small bubbles that breaks quickly and goes to the walls of the glass quickly. No lacing was left on the glass.

Aroma is mostly sweet, caramel, mild roast, cherries.

Beer is medium bodied and pretty smooth, its almost tart. Its mostly sweet, the cherry tartness is interesting. Not my favorite beer, its odd. Not terrible just OK.

Photo of geryeb624
4.61/5  rDev +11.4%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a corked and caged 750 mL bottle into Dogfish Head signature glass. 2009 bottle.

A- Pours a dark ruby-tinted brown with several creamy inches of off-white head.

S- Roasted malt and a little alcohol, with dark fruits, grapes, cherries, contributing a wine like aroma.

T- Sweet roasted malt flavor, with cherries and dark fruits as well. A slight sour note from the lambic peeks through, as does some roasty bitterness towards the finish. Some warming from the alcohol comes in at the end as well.

M- Creamy and rich with a nice effervescent carbonation.

D- A beer with almost 10% ABV should not be this drinkable. This stuff is dangerous as it goes down easy. I could put away a bomber of this no problem.

Wow, this stuff is good. A very nice quad, with a nice hint of fruit from the kriek. A truly superb beer.

Photo of StephenRich
4.32/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

In Cooperstown NY lie two very amazing spectacles; the Baseball Hall of Fame, and Brewery Ommegang. Since 1997 Ommegang has been brewing award-winning Belgian-style ales which are truly unique. Over the weekend I revisited one of my favorite beers; the Ommegang Three Philosophers.

The Three Philosophers is 98% a Belgian-Style Quadrupel and 2% a Belgian Kreik (Cheery Ale), comes in a corked 750ml bottle at 9.8% abv, and to me it is truly a perfect pairing of flavors; Brewery Ommegang was able to create a beer which is magnificently delicious. It has a perfect balance of sweet and savory (a balance whose line is very thin) making it an amazing beer choice for so many occasions.

The Three Philosophers pours smooth and creamy raising a dense and richly tan to brown head almost one inch off the surface of the beer. With a close look you can see that the the bubbles are so tightly packed together that you could probably spoon the head alone. The beer is an opaque deep purple, showing a lot of mahogany and brown tones. There is an amber hue that glows in the beer every time light catches a glimpse of it, probably due to the small amount of Kriek in the beer.

The nose is perfect also! It opens you up with a rush of tart cherries and cinnamon spice right away, then underneath you get the rich plum and dried fruits thats that I was expecting from the Belgian Quad. There is a balance of roasted chocolate and malt also, with a slight finish of floral alcohol (it does come out as a very distinct yeast scent which is purely Belgian, paying homage to how well Ommegang has matched the authentic Belgian style) . It is close to 10%, and certainly so far is very obvious of that fact. Really, to me it is everything that a good Belgian Quadroupel of this sort should be: rich, deep, alluring, sexy and seductive with huge amounts of flavor and complexity showing themselves even before the first sip.

As you bring the beer close the nose gets richer, and I can almost taste it before it hits my lips! When you bring it in, all the cherry, ripe fruits, cinnamon, clove and spice rush over your tongue penetrating every inch of your mouth. I had to let this beer really sit and caress my entire palate so that I could absorb all of the flavors. The most powerful characteristic is the fruity malt and spice, no question. But its so complex and there is so much going on that you really need to focus to get everything out of it. Underneath, really coming out in the cheeks is dark chocolate and hazelnut, with also fades into the richness of plums, dates, banana, roast and more spice. There is a rum and molasses sweetness everywhere which is complimented by the tart cherries, and balanced by a very specific Belgian dryness coming out of the yeast. This is really they key; without the dryness, the beer would almost be too much. It would be too sweet, and to complicated. But because it is balanced perfectly between sweet and savory, you don't have to focus as I just was. You can sit back, relax, and just let the Three Philosophers serenade your palate with beautiful words of wisdom. Its is absolutely gorgeous.

The mouthfeel is the same; complex, filled with life, but also smooth and calming. It feels like it has a great presence, but at the same time doesn't force the issue. It has a understanding of how to be the man, without running around and shouting about it. Its like your best friend - you know that they are always there for you and will always show you a great time, but they would never have to tell you that. You just know it.

Overall, I love it! This is absolutely a beer I would recommend to everyone, and would be a fantastic beer to use to introduce to new comers who are interested in Belgian beers. Its much easier to drink than it may seem, and it is thoroughly enjoyable. I am willing to bet that it will cellar exceptionally well, however I would also bet that I don't have the patience to find out, unfortunately! If you are enjoying this with food, I would stick with deserts to best pull out the sweet cherries and chocolate. In such case, try it with a flourless chocolate cake, chocolate mousse, Chocolate Cherry Trifle, or really anything with either chocolate or cherries in it!

Photo of BudHater111
4.77/5  rDev +15.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

I am not much for words, this I can hardly call a beer though. It is incredible, I truly love the smell and how smooth this beer is to drink. Definitely a sipping beer, not something you will want to drink down as fast as you can. Take your time and enjoy...

Three Philosophers Belgian Style Blend (Quadrupel) from Brewery Ommegang
92 out of 100 based on 5,595 ratings.