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Three Philosophers Belgian Style Blend (Quadrupel) - Brewery Ommegang

Not Rated.
Three Philosophers Belgian Style Blend (Quadrupel)Three Philosophers Belgian Style Blend (Quadrupel)

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5,598 Ratings

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Ratings: 5,598
Reviews: 1,966
rAvg: 4.14
pDev: 11.84%
Wants: 255
Gots: 906 | 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: 5,598 | Reviews: 1,966 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of Overlord
3.11/5  rDev -24.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Decided to re-try a few of these Ommegang brews and put in some reviews.

Pours a hazy/cloudy brown with ruddy hues when held to light. Gigantic billowing off-white foam head.

Smells like fruit laden yeasty bread, surprising amount of cherry, and some spice.

Flavor adds add in Belgian candi, a strange astringent ... yeasty spiciness. A bit watery and thin, but some bubbling carbonation. I don't know. It's basically a sweet Belgian dark ale with a bit of puckery cherry to it. Just too astringent, yet cloyingly spicy sweet at same time.

As you work through the bottle (Even a 12 oz.er), it gets wearisome.

Photo of badesign
4.07/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours the dark reddish-brown of dried blood with garnet highlights. Aroma is very strong and consists of big brown sugar and molasses notes, cherries, of course, and sticky dark fruits, namely raisin and fig.

In tasting this beer I started with it far too cold; don't make the same mistake! Don't bother taking a sip till it warms to maybe 55-60 degrees or more; it doesn't taste very good, and frankly doesn't taste like much of anything. When the temperature comes around, the flavor is of hard candy with lightly medicinal cherry notes, lemon and white bread. There is some alcohol, especially in the strong, lingering aftertaste, but not much associated warming sensation.

The carbonation is tight and effervescent, very pleasing. Drinkability is great insfar as you'll enjoy the beer so much that you'll wish you had more, but the alcohol will catch up eventually.

A truly great beer that represents a compromise between tradition and innovation and pulls it off with aplomb. I only got one to try but would buy it again in a heartbeat.

Photo of mjaskula
4.49/5  rDev +8.5%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

12 oz. bottle served in a large wine glass. Pours a dark amber brown with a thin tan head. I don't think I poured it as vigorously as i should have, the head was thin and there was no lacing. Otherwise looks great.

The aroma from this beer is excellent, sweet dark fruits, cherries, spices and alcohol. The flavor doesn't disappoint either, more sweetness, full of raisin and cherries, a tiny bit of hop bitterness and some alcohol warmth. Carbonation is perfect and mouth feel is clean and dry.

This is easily one of my favorite beers.

Photo of alcstradamus
3.55/5  rDev -14.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Bottle pours a rich amber/copper color with less than a half finger of head. Smell is rich caramel malt and huge spice notes, hints of raisin and chocolate, stinging alcohol, and some floral hop notes.

Taste up front is overripe dark fruit with a splash of spices washing it down. Reminds me quite a bit of a less-boozy version of Rochefort 10....which means I "sort of" like it. There is a lot of flavor here, but it is not a flavor that is particularly appealing to me.

Drinkability suffers because after a while the flavor begins to get boring and it becomes a task to finish the bottle. Not a bad quad by any stretch of the imagination, but not one that I will be seeking again.

Photo of woosterbill
3.85/5  rDev -7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

750ml corked and caged, 2009 vintage, into a Duvel tulip.

A: Deep, dark, translucent ruby body with lively, fine carbonation from the bottom of the tulip (thanks, Duvel, for the etched "D"); big, foamy, off-white head slowly dissipates into a cap, leaving lots of lacing. Great-looking brew.

S: Staying strong. Ripe cherries dominate the nose, backed up by sweet dark fruits (raisins, for the most part - maybe some prunes as well). Hugely malty and fruity, with just a faint whiff of yeast.

T: Starts out as a straightforward continuation of the smell: rich, sweet, fruity malts, with cherries predominant. Tastes great. Unfortunately, upon the finish the flavors devolve from rich and mellow to harsh and cloying - a strongly bitter, astringent cherry aftertaste keeps this from being a truly top-notch quad. Perhaps some age would help mellow this out, but for now this beer fails to follow through on the potential of its aroma and initial flavors.

M: A little thinner than I expected, but nice and smooth with abundant, fine carbonation.

D: I'm doing fine finishing off the 750 by myself, but the harsh aftertaste keeps me from wanting to quaff this intense brew.

Notes: I was really looking forward to trying this, and I'm very glad I did - yet another strong offering from Ommegang. I wish they would offer this beer without the 2% Kriek portion - the rich malts and alcohol of the quad base were blowing me away, but the bitter astringency of the lambic left me disappointed. Still, an extremely tasty beer, and at least a couple bucks cheaper than any Belgian quad - although, having had both recently, I'd gladly pay the extra 2.50 to get St. Bernardus Abt 12.


Photo of Casey10
4.33/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Thought this would be a good one for my 80th review.

A - brown hazy copper color small lingering head.

S - light smell of cherry

T - cherries with slight fig a bit acidic.

M - creamy smooth really nice

D - even with the higher ABV enjoyed this quite a bit and look forward to the next one.

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

2009 bottle
Poured deep, dark coppery brown with a slight red hint around the edges of the glass. The thick head was a bit fleeting, but laced my glass nicely. Spicy Belgian yeast smell with sour cherries in the background. Nice alcohol and cherry flavor at first, then you get the bready sweet malts. Damn, this stuff is good! Very drinkable despite the ABV. Luckily, I only had one 750, because if more was at my disposal it would have been downed as well.

Photo of Vonerichs
4.12/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured into a tulip with a one finger head, no lacing to be seen. Copper color.

The smell is vinous with a berry esther. The malts are of the dark fruit variety. There's no problem picking up any scent. It's very robust and pronounced.

This is a very distinct tasting quad. The esthers come through as a mix of berries and black cherries. The finish is medicinal and has a numbing effect.

Mouthfeel is slightly tannic and bitter, leaving a very dry feeling on the palate. By then end of this 750ml I was in dire need of a glass of water, but that was expected.

Definitely a sipper, but no problem finishing a bottle solo. Very tastey with a complex variety of dark fruits.

Photo of scottbrew4u
4.33/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A 2008 that I picked up recently.

A: Poured a dark amber to light brown in color with ruby hues and good clarity. Head was a tall frothy tan mass with good retention and lacing.

S: Molasses, dried cherries, and black currants compliment the rich caramel and roasted malt aroma. Hops come through only slightly as a spicy pepper aroma. Fruity yeast and fusel alcohol are present too.

T: Sweet nuttiness, caramel and slightly burnt sugar fill the malt profile. Dried cherries are a wonderful compliment to the rich malts. Yeast ads a bit more fruity esters.

M: Smooth medium body with some alcohol warmth. Carbonation tight.

D: A sipper but a lovely flavorful beer to experience. I would definitely have this one again.

Photo of majesticsock
5/5  rDev +20.8%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

The beer has a red & brown tint to it. Pours with a medium head that looks great and incredibly rich.

The smell on this is amazing. Smells like a true Belgian ale with a hint of cherry.

Has a sweet and a bit heavy taste. Difficult to taste the 9.8% alcohol, but I can definitely feel it.

Mouthfeel was a bit thicker than I expected and foams up quick when swooshing around, but has a nice soft texture to it.

Drinkability is exceptional. I could easily stick with this the whole night.

Photo of goblue3509
3/5  rDev -27.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Pours a dark amber brownish color with a little one finger head that gave way to some lacing. The smell is of black cherries and sweet roasted malts. The taste is a strong malt backbone with black cherries overriding the malt at the tail end. There is also an alcohol taste from middle to end, there is a good deal of bitterness that starts at the beginning and is present throughout. The mouthfeel is a little slick and oily, with a low to moderate carbonation, not as high as i would have thought. This beer is below average on drinkablility, it is very strong and a little overpowering in the middle.

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

2009 vintage

A Dark reddish brown. fairly opaque.

S Strong. But sweet. a hint of cherries.

T Like the smell just a hint of sour. very sweet for 9.8% still you can feel the warmth from the high alc.

M substantial, perhaps a little oily I guess due to the high sugar content

D for a 9.8% this is very drinkable. But more than a couple bottles would put you on your ass.

This is my new favorite beer. It was $12.50 for a 4 pack in bellevue, ky @ the party source, aug 2009.

Photo of Natural510
4.31/5  rDev +4.1%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

2008 bottling.
Pours a medium mahogany-brown with immense head which slowly dissipates; eventually a 2mm layer is left which remains to the end and helps coat the glass nicely.
Nose is malty with brown sugar/molasses and hints of dark fruit.
Malted sweetness in flavor as well, with a high yeast character. The added kriek is very subdued, merely another player in the overall flavor. A nice raisin/fig note kicks around along with the cherry fruitiness.
Body is full, creamy and smooth in the mouth.
Perhaps not the most traditional of the "quads", this is still a nice offering on its own. The elements meld well together and this makes for an excellent after-dinner drink.

Photo of SaucyA
4.07/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4


A - Sniftered. Pours a deep, apple-cider brown with a creamy 1 finger off-white head. Little lacing. Lots of floaties on a relatively careful pour.

S - Very interesting nose, and completely unique, which I love. A definite malty quad vibe, with layers of sour complexity. The cherries peek out in the nose more as it warms, but never really take an extreme forefront. Yeasty, sweet, sour, slight herbal notes... runs the gamut. Mouth is definitely watering. Surprisingly little booze.

T - Again, incredibly unique. Relatively sweet as opposed to sour, the cherries add a nice little twist to the quad base. While neither aspect detracts from the other, I think I prefer my quads without fruit. Plums, booze on the back, toasty malts, notes of black cherries. All in all a really solid beer, just not necessarily my favorite combination of tastes. I really wish the aftertaste lingered longer.

M - Creamy, even carbonation and on the lighter side of medium-bodied. I think if it were a little less attenuated, it'd stick to my palate more.

D - Quite drinkable despite my lack of enthusiasm for this brew. While it's not exactly my cup of tea (or bottle of brew), it's well-made and easy to drink... so I can't dock points.

Notes: I'm probably gonna revisit this yearly, and try to get an older bottle... just to see. I'm not the hugest fan, but it's still a nice beer all around.

Photo of melagnus
4.2/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3

A - Three wise men (1. two finger-thick sudsy off-white head that sparkles in the sunlight, 2. Ruby Brown hue [SRM 24] with murky (turbid mashing?) look, 3. carbonic activity medium-high). The beer settles down to a fine film after a good minute; amazing head retention! Lacing on the glass forms, as the lactic cherry glues itself to the side of the snifter.

S - Purely intoxicating! A yeasty (Lactobacillus, Pediococcus, Acetobacteria, or all three?!?) smell rises with mixes of acidic cherries into the nasal canals. An undertone of sweet booziness makes it way through, but at 9.8% ABV this is to be expected; it is a Quad after all!!

T - Unbelievable complexity! Sourness coming most likely from the Pediococcus yeast, slight earthiness in the finish from probably the Brettanomyces, which creates a drier finish. Slight acidity from the Lactobacillus, with that blend of sweet cherry. The body comes through as medium on the palate with a slight syrupiness to it. The alcohol definitely hits the head in a soothing way, though it just adds to the incredible nature of this beer. Lastly, a spiciness via the hops tickles the palate and leaves a slight lasting impression, but only through licking the chops does one re-experience this! Overall, a nice clean, dry finish with little aftertaste.

D/C - Drinkability is a tossup. On one end the mind quickly alters to another realm with the high toxicity of this brew and yet on another end the palate is left with a feeling of not only desiring more, but being able to handle more. Polishing off a 750ml bottle of this brew would be possible, though after just 354ml of the stuff I question the logic in proceeding forth. Knowing how amazing their Cave-Aged Abbey Ale is, I feel as though I truly missed out on the cave-aged variant of this beer.

In closing, there's no need to question if it's worth the try, this beer is one of the best out there!


Photo of mklinger
4.1/5  rDev -1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

12 oz bottle poured into a snifter.

A: Rich brown color with a hint of ruby. Tan/light brown 2+ finger head that left decent lacing on the glass.

S: Herbal, slightly medicinal. Nice fruit & sour elements.

T: Very complex! Almost all the taste elements represented here, though low on bitterness. Sweet, herbal, sour all balanced together. I kind of suspect this will be a better beer in 2 or 3 years -- lots of complex flavors but not all melded into a nice unified whole.

M: Thick & malty with good carbonation.

D: In spite of a lot of nice elements, I was done & had lost some interest halfway through the bottle.

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

Pours a dark ruby/maroon color. Very nice looking. Aroma is overall sweet.. sort of hard to pick many different things out but its sugary. Flavor is similar to aroma, quite sweet with a sugary, candy-ish presence. Some dark fruit and a hint of Belgian spice but mostly a malty, sweet affair. No hop bitterness at all (but why would you expect any?). Mouth is full-bodied and pleasant. Crisp carbonation. Not too heavy really.. If you're into sweetness its very good, I could see it being a bit much for some but even with the higher abv I could easily drink more than one in a sitting. Quite good.

Photo of Lolli1315
4.11/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

750 ml bottle.

A- A dark brownish redish color with a small head but great lacing. Almost reminds me of a wine. This beer looks great in a glass, especially the ommegang goblet.

S- Herbal type of smell, alcohol is noticeable as well.

T- Slight taste of apple, but dark malts seems to dominate this beer. The back end the alcohol hits you, but it isn't uncomfortable.

M- Good level of carbonation and medium bodied.

D- This certainly isn't a beer that you are going to drink quickly, but that is the beauty of it. This is great for a dessert when you want to wind down the night rather than start it up.

Notes: Made the mistake of drinking this beer by itself rather than pairing something along with it, should have taken the warning. Won't make the same mistake twice, wouldn't want to waste this one.

Photo of kegger22
4/5  rDev -3.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours reddish brown with a respectable head that fades quickly. The aroma I get is malty sweetness and alcohol. The taste is sweet with an underlying sourness and yeh, I can taste dark cherries. Mouth feel is about medium bodied with a little carbonation at the tip of the tongue. I think this is a sipper because of the sweetness and ABV. Overall, though the flavor was not what I expected, I both liked and recommend it. The quads are a tough category of beers and there are other great ones out there.

Photo of jkc88
4.11/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Dark red to brown. Has a thick almond colored head.

S: Dark fruits and yeast with a little bit of ethanol.

T: It has a nutty and yeasty flavor, with hints of fig. Ends with a little bit of spiciness.

M: Medium bodied, fairly light for a quad.

Overall a very solid beer. Good flavor and fairly drinkable despite the high alcohol content.

Photo of webbcreative
4.15/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Nice big white head, dark amber copper color. Smell is incredible, not very overpowering, but almost had a cognac smell to it. Taste at first comes and you kinda hard with the tartness, I was expecting something more on the sweet side, after you get over that initial shock and know what to expect, it had a real nice mild sweetness, I know it has cherry added, but it comes across more tart, like raisin and plum. This is really a complex beer. Mouthfeel is great with a med to thin body.

Overall this is one great beer, very complex and a great deal for a Belgian style beer with an American price tag to boot.

Photo of jnezda
4.35/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

This is one of my favorite Belgian styles beers. Perhaps because it is an American beer it is priced below the import Belgians and over the past year I have enjoyed a number of bottles of this brew. At home I drink this beer in my favorite snifter since that glass opens the smell nicely bringing out the fruit tones and earthiness of the beer. The color is a dark caramel with a white head that pours nicely from the bottle. The head does tend to fade quickly with no lacing which leads the drinker to think there will be no body but the mouth feel is big and full while not being over powering. This is a drinkable beer great to enjoy with a number of foods. I have paired this with grilled chicken and fish and vegetables with great success.

Photo of disastermouse
4.29/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Been meaning to try this out for a while..

A - Dark tea colored, brown-white head, moderate lacing that doesn't cling to the glass.

S - Boubon maple. Strong boubon smell! Honey with bubblegummy yeast.

T - What a balance! Bitter leaves, maple at the start, bourbon and honey in the middle, finished with a dry cidery taste but the boubon chases it down.

MF - thick, substantial, and moderately fizzy. Less carbonation than I'd have expected but what I'd have prefered - so a happy surprise.

D - Easy to drink for the type. It does sit heavy in the stomach. A great beer for sipping at a fire, having philosophical thoughts - much like wine in that regard.

I typically like a more traditional Belgian dark or abbey, bit this was a pretty cool switch-up! Will get again.

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

Perhaps I was a little disappointed in this beer because the waitress who served it to me talked it up a great deal. The thing that struck me as odd was the overwhelming scent of this beer. It reminded me very much of cheap cognac. Otherwise, not bad. It was reddish brown colour (maybe it was the dim lighting in the beerhall) with a thin head. The mouthfeel was pleasant. As for the taste, it also reminded me of a chocolatey, cognac-y concoction. It wasn't bad, but I had high hopes. Bit of a let down.

Photo of Rhynes2
3.54/5  rDev -14.5%
look: 5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

First few sips of this brew were a bit intense. Pours out a very thick dark copper color. Huge foamy head as well but no lacing at all. Carbonation was right on. Very smokey tasting with some light hints of cherry. Just a little too sweet for my taste. I would however buy this again.

Three Philosophers Belgian Style Blend (Quadrupel) from Brewery Ommegang
92 out of 100 based on 5,598 ratings.