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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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5,589 Ratings

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Ratings: 5,589
Reviews: 1,963
rAvg: 4.14
pDev: 11.84%
Wants: 256
Gots: 898 | 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: 5,589 | Reviews: 1,963 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of BrewsCrewSA
4.8/5  rDev +15.9%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Exceptional. I picked this one up after having tried Ommegang's Abbey Ale a few weeks ago. And being a fan of krieks and cherry-based beers, I couldn't resist the curiosity of just what "2% ale with cherries added" meant.

A - Poured out of a 750ml capped and corked bottle into my Delirium Tremens snifter. Shades of ruby, blood and garnet, holding up to the light, it turned solid red with a layer of orange on top. Minimal head retention, but great lacing throughout.

S - Smells of a true Belgian. Tart, fruity banana aroma that's typical of the style/origin. Appetizing, sweet, it smacks of great taste and better things to come.

T - Carbonation first crashes against the palate, but is almost immediately overwhelmed by a big, fat, alcoholic cherry. I love that effect! Tart notes of alcohol come first, but are instantly settled by tones of cherry, biscuit malts. Again, exceptional. Alcohol on the high notes, sugary complex cherry in the middle, biscuits and undertones of toast on the bottom. Imagine crushing a soothing brandy-soaked cherry between your tongue and upper palate.

M + D - Alcohol settled quickly along my tastebuds, it's still a Quadrupel so I'm not knocking it. Wonderful drinkability for this style.

One of the best beers I've ever tried. I'm very satisfied and will return to this one very soon.

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

Appearance - Cloudy, dark cherry color with a thin head.

Smell - Cherries, molasses, and bread.

Taste - Unexpected smoothness for a Quad. Well-balanced. The sweetness never overwhelms the ale. The warmness of the alcohol is noticeable after a few sips.

Mouthfeel - a little syrupy. Coats the palette well.

Drinkability - High for a Quad. I usually feel full after one but I could enjoy a couple of these. The high carbonation helps this ale go down easier than expected with the 9.8% ABV.

Photo of tylerss20
4.65/5  rDev +12.3%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I really have to love this beer. Pours reddish amber with huge blooming crown. Fruit, specifically berries and sweet dark fruit present along with thick malt notes in the nose.

Taste is initially sweet, but backs off into a wonderful complex of mixed fruit, spice, sweet bread, a bit of bacon smokiness. So smooth. Really a top notch brew. Bottle purchased at 12 Pine in Peterborough

Photo of LordAdmNelson
4/5  rDev -3.4%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

A- Really rich-ruby brown with moderate off-white head that fades somewhat quickly. Head and lacing are ok, but not at the level that I expect a Belgian-style ale.

S- Cloves and alcohol mainly, a little sweet malt too (caramel?). Nice and balanced for a quad, but nothing too complex.

T- Cloves, grapes, alcohol... the main flavors. A little touch of sweet malt with a slight metallic twang. Not bad, definitely not bad. Not fantastic though. Vinous nature comes through strong with the alcohol.

M- A little light with moderate carbonation. Nothing special.

D- Really good for a high ABV brew. Delicious and light--a dangerous combo.

Photo of WakeandBake
4.72/5  rDev +14%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

12oz Bottle A muddy burnt amber color body with a lasting small to medium offwhite head, huge amounts of sheeting and nice lacing. Aroma of dark cherries,apple,rasins, earthy spices and tobacco. Flavor is fruity without being tart,malty,yeasty,cloves,peppercorns,tobacco,sometimes I wonder if im getting hops or alcohol they seemed to have mixed well because it seems more spicy than alcoholic in flavor and finish. Slightly dry/slightly sweet. This shit is the bomb.

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

A - The corked popped off and it poured a thick, tall tan head. A good two inches of head before it begins to settle back down. There is visible signs of carbonation in the burnt orange ale.

S - I can't detect the scent of cherries, but I can strongly detect carmalized grain and malt.

T - Delicious! A sweet belgian ale. I'm having a hard time picking up the cherries and the kriek. It is very good nonetheless. I can taste the alcohol trail as it goes down.

M - Sitting on my tongue, it has a medium smooth weight and light bite but gradually turns sharp from the garbonation.

D - A single bottle of this by yourself is enough to make you feel good. It is by far a sipping beer and something fancy that should be pulled out to make a good impression to the ones wondering.

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

Poured from a 22oz cork-finished bottle in my house into a goblet

Pours a ruby chestnut color, thin head after the pour.lovely and hazy.

Strong Belgian sugar in the nose, lovely spice, fruit and malt balance

Great sugar and soft malt balance in the flavor, the fruit is understated, but pops in the finish, which is a nice sweet, long-lasting essence

An exquisite beer, complex and tasty

Photo of biegaman
4.23/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

2008 Vintage.

Three Philosophers has the very same rustic tone of falu red that adorns the fences, barns and summerhouses along the Swedish countryside. The beer is also touched with the pinkish blush of English country garden rose hips. Alas, the beer is topped with a frothy bounty of never ceasing head and the most prototypical of Belgian lace.

Belgian Quad and Belgian Kriek seemed unlikely bedfellows, at least until first whiff. The spicy, sugary sweetness of the quad is underlined by the tart, juicy fruitiness of the cherries. It takes many a big sniffs to even begin to plumb the depths of this layered, multi-faceted bouquet. It is magnificent and tireless.

Each mouthful is a bustling marketplace of tastes and textures. The beer is sweet but also lightly tart. Its flavour is comprised of black cherries and an assortment of other dark fruits and berries including plum, raisin and, notably, currants.

If you wanted to pair your port-like notes of brandied raisins and juicy currants with something a little heartier and more decadent, Ommegang has you covered. The sweet malty base provides more than enough chewy chocolaty caramel to elate anyone's sweet tooth. A clove-like spiciness floats to the surface with warmth.

Time will likely invoke an eternal dance between all of the beer's different elements. I'm unsure what to expect from aging, at any stage. Will the fruitiness fade? Will the intensity of flavour increase or decrease? It will be wonderful to see what combinations emerge from its time spent in the cellar; the best may be yet to come.

I'll conclude my thoughts on the Three Philosophers Quad with a rather philosophical question: Is brewing beer a craft or an art? That is to ask, does it involve skill or artistic impression? I think it is the latter that shows the most. That said, if this beer is any indication, the answer is that it inevitably involves a great deal of both.

Photo of mwilbur
4.63/5  rDev +11.8%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Decided to finally pop open my 2004 (after about 5 yrs cellaring). Poured from 750 mL corked and caged bottle into my Three Philosophers chalice.
A: Pours a very dark and very cloudy burnt orange with 1 inch tan head. Some sediment in the bottom of the glass. Very little light comes through with backlighting. A very nice looking brew!
S: Cherry, malt, hint of belgian spice, and maybe a bit of black pepper.
T: The first thing that comes to mind is fine port. This has aged very well. Softened and deepened in taste and texture. Mild and soft cherry and sweet malt. Background backbone of caramel malt.
M: Very soft and smooth. Matures a bit, but wish it did more. Very nice lingering aftertaste.
D: Highly drinkable, especially for style. One of my favorite beers from one of my favorite breweries. At times I wish it had a bit more (strength, complexity, depth), but then I take another sip and savor the goodness.
I am pleasantly surprised by how well this one ages. I would definitely let another one of these go 5 yrs or more. In fact I would highly recommend it.

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

Pulled one of two 2008 750 ml's from the cellar.

Cork popped with a familiar hiss. Pours a deep crimson color. Large pluming tan Belgian head produced. Excellent clarity, however the deep crimson color prevents the brew from being transparent. Soft carbonation that is barely noticeable.

I'm having a hard time picking up the cherries on the nose. I hope that the lambic will be more forthcoming in the taste department. Honestly, if it didn't say it on the bottle, I would have never pegged this beer for having cherries in it. Aroma is sweet maltyness and a spicey quality. I'm also getting some dark fruits, maybe this is from the combination of the cherries and spices. Unfortunately, I am picking up the high ABV in the nose.

Wow, what a fantastic beer! The taste is so complex, there is a party going on in my mouth. Malty sweetness is dominant, then I get earthy tones. Almost medicinal. There is a hint of alcohol, but it's not overpowering at all. Unfortunately, I'm also having a hard time picking up the cherries in the taste department as well, but thats ok. This is one incredibly complex and interesting brew. I can only assume that time will make this brew better.

Mouthfeel is medium. Sticky almost. Incredibly smooth and creamy. Carbonation is barely noticeable in the mouth. Incredibly drinkable. I'm glad I had one of these fresh(er), but now I'm curious as to what a couple years will do to this. Only time will tell!

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

This ale from Ommegang strikes me as there more subdued offering, although that isn't a bad thing. Poured from a 750ml bottle into a glass, it produces a thick head. Very dark red in colour, almost opaque when held up to a light. It states on the label that it's a blend of a traditional ale and cherry ale (I believe it's 96%:4%), and this shows.

The cherry scent lingers there, along with a smell somewhat akin to fragrant wood. Unlike the other Ommegang ales I've had, this one has a suitably simple taste, not as complex as the Abbey Ale or Rare Vos. Initially, it tastes like a normal ale, but after swallowing the cherry flavour comes out in full force. One thing my friends and I agree on (although I'm not sure Ommegang would want people going around saying this) is that this and the Abbey Ale have the most delicious beer burps. What I mean is, it doesn't taste absolutely vile as many brews do (Guinness comes to mind), but sort of tastes like the beer.

This ale doesn't strike as being as heavy as the others produced by Ommegang, but it does have a kick. Unfortunately, it's between $8-$9/bottle around here, so I reserve this one for occaisional purchases. Still, a fairly good ale.

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

Sampled at Julio's in Westborough. Clear, brown ale with a thin foamy head.

Aroma was of sweet caramel malts and cherries. Definite fruit presence.

Taste was of deep rich malt, with notes of chocolate. No cherries at all in the flavor. Wow. Interesting switch from the cherries to the chocolate.

Mouthfeel was nice, not heavy, but it definitely lets you know it's a big beer. Loaded with flavor.

Deceptively high drinkability. The ABV is well hidden, and it's not overpowering. You could go through this quickly without even trying.

Photo of iNHaze
4.6/5  rDev +11.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

From a 750mL to a wine glass

This beer pours a deep garnet with excellent clarity and ruby highlights. I had a nice 1/4" creamy head on mine.

The smell is spectacular. Cherries, first and foremost, followed by honey, alcohol, and an olfactory wallop of caramel.

Taste is a nice malty caramel, decently sweet without being overpowering, and a slight hint of cherries, also not overpowering or cough syrupy. This is chased by a slight bitter hoppiness, which progresses to a distinctive metallic hop taste and then rounds back out with caramel. The way the flavors move across the palette is pretty impressive here.

Mouthfeel is very full and round, with a hint of yeasty carbonation. You can feel the alcohol going down, like a sip of brandy.

Drinkability really goes two ways for me. This is a great brew to drink in moderation, a glass with a meal, possibly a dessert, or even a nice cut of prime rib. But I could also see, on one of those nights when drinking just for the sake of drinking, killing quite a few glasses of this beer in a sitting. Impressive.

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

Pours a deep, clear reddish brown. Nice, bubbly tan head that hangs around for a little while.
Nice, complex aroma. Lots of dark fruit, raisins, dark cherries. Good whiff of chocolate. Lots of Belgian yeast aromas. Bourbon and brandy aromas from the alcohol.
Lots of fruit flavors. The cherries really come out in the flavor, along with the other dark fruit. Raisins, bits of stone fruit. Chocolate and hints of spice. The alcohol is better hidden in the taste, but there are still some bourbon/brandy flavors present.
Fairly thick mouthfeel. Syrupy and a little sticky, but not cloying sweet.
Good drinkability. But, at almost 10%, it would be tough to have more than 2 in a night. Great dessert beer.
This is one of my favorite beers and I always thoroughly enjoy it whenever I pick it up. Highly recommended.

Photo of UA8
4.33/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A- Pours a deep and dark ruby/ orange with a tall tan head.

S- Toffee malt, raisins, dried cherries, big Belgian yeast twang. A touch of rich sherry/ bourbon alcohol.

T- Rich chocolate taste up front, roasted malts and dried fruits on the midpalate. Finishes with cherry tartness and heavily roasted grain bitterness.

M- Rich and full, moderately heavy carbonation.

D- This beer is highly complex and enjoyable to drink. For the high abv it is very smooth. There are so many nuances in the palate of this beer its like a little adventure for you mouth.

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

A- Dark Reddish, brown body with an off-white almost tan head. Head sticks well to the sides of the glass.

S- Lots of malty aromas, some rock sugar scents stick out. Slight notes of alcohol; not much hop aroma at all.

T- Layered malt flavors; each malt flavor lends itself to the coming one. Dark fruit and rock sugary sweet notes jump out at me. Alcohol notes are present toward the end and some slight phenols linger.

M- Smooth and full body; almost creamy feel toward the back of the tongue. Carbonation is higher up front and mellows towards the finish.

D- Really an awesome quad. Good representation of the style. I'd drink this as I often as I can.

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

A. Big well carbonated bubbly head, that disappears almost immeadiately. Some lacing left on glass. Ruby/Brown color.

S. Malt, yeast, dark fruit, spices, alochol, and a hint of cherries.

T. Cherries up front. Spice and alcohol. Less complexity than other quads, altough the 2% Lambic adds another dimension to the taste.

M. Medium-full bodied. Well Carbonated. Smooth finish.

D. A very drinkable beer. Interesting twist on the quad style. A Good Beer.

Photo of ArrogantDeadGuy
3.65/5  rDev -11.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

I bought this bottle during the summer of 2005 and opened it Apr. 2009. I poured the beer into the tulip-ish glass that accompanied the beer when I bought it. The ale poured an apple cider color with a brief ecru head. The ciderlike aroma set the tone for the rich cherry cider like taste and feel of the ale. There is a red wine like after taste that doesn't linger. The flavors are clean and to the point with a bigh show of cherry. The 9.8 ABV is definately there but blends well. Though the lacing is faint it sticks with the brew down to the final sip. there is a good amount of carbonation in this beer, you tell at a glance but the bubbly look doesn't convey exactly in the mouthfeel. This isn't really a "knock 'em back" beer for me but went well with dessert and cheese. THe coolest thing about the beer was the relatively substanital sediment hanging out in the bottom of the glass left behind just to reinforce the Belgian in this ale.

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

A: Dark ruby with a slight brown tint. A good centimeter of head on the top.
S: Sweet and estery with a cherry hint. A great balance between the two.
T:Sweet fruity esters and cherries mixed together in a great balanced. Very tasty.
M: Full bodied. A lot of carbonation.
D: Good

Photo of bowersdm
3.4/5  rDev -17.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3

12oz bottle poured into a Rochefort goblet

A - red/brown color with 0.5cm of head

S - yeasty bread aroma, grass, caramel, apples, and a slight earthiness

T - tart cherries, dry grass flavor, sweet caramel/honey-like malt, a touch of grass hoppiness and apple esters.

M - fairly carbonated, which I've found is normal for quads. medium bodied.

D - it definitely doesn't compare to any of the trappist quads or to St. Bernardus. it isn't bad, but its price is not that much less than a bottle of St. Bernardus 12, which I would definitely prefer

Photo of 1fastz28
3.5/5  rDev -15.5%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

well, i bought this for the fiancee hoping she would like it, but alas she doesn't, maybe a bit to strong for her, or the aftertaste, but i'll finish it off.

smell is strong, has a big yeast spicy smell to it, with some fruit in there.

taste is ok, not my fave though, i really dont like fruit beers, i feel i may of wasted 8 dollars on this, considering the fiancee wont drink it, and i dont know if i want to drink the whole bomber.

its not that its a bad beer, just not my style.

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

Decanted into my Stone crystal tulip, for maximum enjoyment.

On the pour, you get a nearly opaque garnet colored brew, with orange around the edges. The mountainous head is fig colored, and quite nice, though not long lived. Some lacing is left on the glass. A beautiful beer to look at.

The nose is very malty; sweet dark breads and fruit come to mind. Hidden behind this malt is a little hint of cherries. I noticed them, because it is mentioned on the bottle.

The taste is huge and awesome. Plenty of complex malt flavors come to mind. As mentioned, dark breads, dark fruits, and figs figure prominently. The dark cherries are more noticeable in the taste, along with a very hidden funk. The mouthfeel is medium to full, and the carbonation makes this Quad do a happy dance on your palate. Each sip makes you want to take another. The 9.8% abv is well hidden, but you can feel some warming in the stomach.

Another dangerously drinkable beer, which is highly recommended. Very complex, and you could easily spend an hour with the corked bomber and the time would fly by. By all means, give this one a try!

Na Zdravje!

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

Looks good, though not much in the way of head, something a belgian usually takes for granted. Nice color though.

Smells of bread and cherries, with some other malty goodness in the mix. Very good.

Tastes bready and dry, I have a difficult time discerning the flavors added by the lambic. Very good however.

Mouth is again very crisp and dry, medium in body, and high in carbonation. Perhaps my pour was the reason for the lack of head, because the bubbles are there.

Overall, this is a great, cheap example of the style.

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

A- Barely translucent and nearly opaque with many active streams of little bubbles HEAD- Big, tan, and active. Interesting, sporadic lacing. COLOR: Deep purple/brown color common to darker Belgian sugars.

S- Fruity and herbal. Medicinal flavors like menthol, licorice and alcohol in the background. MALTS: Aromatic Belgian malts.

T- Very complex. Dark fruit, berries, light fruits, candi sugar. TONGUE: Sweetness balanced with tart herbal characters and a low level of bitter hops.

M- BODY: Medium and slightly alcoholic. CARBONATION: Active and tingly with many small bubbles.

D- I gotta say, I didn't think I'd be able to taste the "2% ale brewed with cherries"(LAMBIC), but it was really brought out by the simplistic yet complex, "dark quad" base. The 10% alcohol makes me happy. Worth it at 9.29$ for a 750ml.

Photo of seand
4/5  rDev -3.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured from the bottle into a large red wine glass.

A: Pours a dark clear reddish brown, with a little over a finger of off white head. Looks very nice, great color. Head doesn't stick around long, but leaves reasonable lacing.

S: Rich and malty, pretty big on the nose. Hints of honey, cherries, brown sugar.

T: Malty and interesting. There's a hint of sourness. The alcohol is there, but muted.

M: Lots of carbonation but drinks pretty smoothly as it warms, and actually a fairly light mouthfeel overall.

D: Easy to drink, but needs to be taken slow due to the high ABV.

Three Philosophers Belgian Style Blend (Quadrupel) from Brewery Ommegang
92 out of 100 based on 5,589 ratings.