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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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5,393 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 5,393
Reviews: 1,932
rAvg: 4.14
pDev: 11.84%
Wants: 231
Gots: 738 | FT: 15
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
Sort by:  Usefulness | Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Three Philosophers Belgian Style Blend (Quadrupel) Alström Bros
Ratings: 5,393 | Reviews: 1,932 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of Osiris9588
3.48/5  rDev -15.9%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Poured out of a 12oz brown bottle. Deep amber color, almost like strong iced tea with ruby red accents. Suspect some sediment to be floating around in there but can't see it, as it's nearly opaque. Two-finger off-white head, fluffy but not very stiff, dissipates quickly leaving considerble lacing around the underside of the tulip's rim.

The nose consists of sweet yeast and toasty malts, cherry, black berry, butterscotch, and toffee. The flavor profile follows the aroma's, along with some of a phenolic characteristic and a moderate flash of alcohol, as to be expected at 9.8%.

The mouth is light on the tip of the tongue, moving into a semi-dry stretch of malt and yeast, then into the sugary, yet some what harsh and medicinal finish. It has decent drinkability, and I don't mind a strong presence of alcohol, but I think they over did it just a bit on this one.

Solid, but not worthy of regular revisits.

Osiris9588, Sep 14, 2006
Photo of Damian
4.08/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Drank from a 750 ml bottle purchased at Mall Discount Liquors, Cambridge, MA

Poured a dark, murky, ruby-brown with a large, caramel-colored head that was thick and foamy. Spotty, cascading lacing trickled down the glass.

Aroma was rich and complex, sweet and malty. Some cherry and/or raspberry was immediately noticeable. Hints of caramel, raisins, prunes, spices and brown sugar were also detectable.

Taste was malty, creamy, toffee-like and alcohol rich with a consistent, subtle, hoppy overtone detectable from start to finish. Nice melding of flavors. Alcohol was somewhat noticeable at the start and crescendoed at the finish. Slightly dry and hoppy aftertaste. No cherry flavor was detectable but there was a touch of tartness (the bottle stated that this was a quadrupel with cherry lambic added).

Mouthfeel was rich and creamy but somewhat thinner than expected. Carbonation was a bit overdone.

Drinkability was quite good considering the 9.8% ABV.

Overall, a terrific quadrupel and an outstanding value for your money.

Damian, Sep 10, 2006
Photo of kimcgolf
4.22/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4.5

This was really good. Poured from the bomber to a reddish brown color with off-white head, that lingered and left very good lacing. Aroma was strongly cherry, with malty sweetness evident. Body was medium, and at first, highly carbonated. Taste was more of the cherry, mixed well with the traditional ale taste. As beer warmed, the alcohol became more evident in the nose and taste, but still well blended with the cherry ale. Excellent warming finish as the alcohol took hold, and a very smooth after-taste. I will look for more of this in the coming winter.

kimcgolf, Sep 09, 2006
Photo of becktone
3.43/5  rDev -17.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Labeled "Brewed 2005" at the top:
Real nice three to four finger head. As it receedes a bit the head leaves some lacing along the sides of the glass. The color can only be described as garnet. Head retention could be better, the head continusously receedes Lacing qualities aren't all that great.

The nose is malty sweet. Caramel malts, small amouts of phenols-cloves/banannas. No hop aroma as can be expected with this style... Well I can't say no hop aroma-there's a very small amount of a spicy aroma in this brew, probably from the use of some noble hop.

In my opinion the taste of this beer is just not as good as it smells. I definitely expected to taste something much more sweet; something more reminiscent of the aroma. The beer is good, but dosen't seem to live up to its aroma. The flavors aren't very pronounced. Perhaps my taste buds are off today, or perhaps the flavors or just to complex and blended so well that I'm missing something. Alcohol is detectable, but in small amounts-basically its not all that perceieable.

This beer is full bodied and is easy to drink. I think that I'll definitely try this one again. I want to see if I have the same experience that I've had with this one. This beer goes down very well there's nothing wrong with it that would make it hard to drink, could almost drink this all night. However, I find the flavor of this beer to be more bland than other beers I've had; beers that I would rather drink all night. All in all its above average and I like it, but in the way of Quadrupel, I prefer Rochefort 10.

becktone, Sep 09, 2006
Photo of Doomcifer
3.68/5  rDev -11.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured a very rich, dark brown with ruby hues to it. about a half-inch head that dissipated quickly into a tiny head that was formed just around the circumfrence of the galss, leaving behind very little lacing. Smells of ripe, dark fruits, cherries, figs, sweet, and some alcohol. Taste is also of very ripe dark fruits, figs, prunes, raisins, cherry flavors, very noticeable alcohol burn in the finish. This beer could mask the alcohol better but I guess with a beer like this, aging it would be a wise move to mellow it out. Mouthfeel is full and airy, silky, with a good amount of carbonation. I've had better quads but they are usually from Belgium. This Three Philosophers is probably the best quad coming from the USA, or at least from what I have had. Cheers.

Doomcifer, Sep 04, 2006
Photo of nicefix
3.63/5  rDev -12.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

I noticed a good amount of setiment in the bottom of the bottle. Poured into a brandy snifter (that's what I drink my Belgians with since I don't have a chalice). Dark brown with a big off white head with good size bubbles. Nice lace but not a lot of retension.

From what I can remember it smells and tastes similar to the Hennepin but stronger in flavor and alcohol. I smell fruits, maybe prunes, apples, some malt. Taste is the same with a finish of alcohol and some hops. Pretty drinkable. Another good brew from Ommegang.

nicefix, Sep 01, 2006
Photo of akorsak
4.33/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This is a 2005 bottle served chilled to room temperature in a Troegenator seidel.

A: The ale has a thick luxurious head that does not lace. It is a hazy light brown color with abundant sediment.

S: Smell is malty-cherry mix, with the cherry being more of a sour (liefmans) than sweet (lindemans).

T: The taste is cherry and chewy malts. The malts are dominant but give way to a certain heat from hops. The malt finish is long and the formidble alcohol is well hidden. Maybe its just me, but the malts have a muscat grape and chocolate finish.

M: The depth of the quad and the cherry hints makes this a beer that thoroughly confuses the tastebuds.

D: Even at 9.8%, this is a strong drinkable ale.

akorsak, Aug 29, 2006
Photo of BlackAngus
4.5/5  rDev +8.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Dark, ruby color, fast-fading head, but lots of champagne-like carbonation.

Dark fruit, alcohol, maltiness in the aroma.

Sour lambic flavor, cherries, big maltiness, fruitiness, definite flavor of alcohol, some chocolately notes.

Mouthfeel is thick, heavy bodied, just the right level of carbonation. Nice alcohol presence.

Highly drinkable...if it were available in my area, I'd always have some on hand.

BlackAngus, Aug 28, 2006
Photo of egajdzis
3.78/5  rDev -8.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

2004... Poured a hazy brownish red color with a thin tan head that left nice lacing on the glass. Aroma of tart cherry and caramel malts, spices, and light alcohol. Taste of pepper, caramel, some cocoa, cherries and some yeast as well. Reminds me of a candy apple.

egajdzis, Aug 28, 2006
Photo of greebsnarf
3.88/5  rDev -6.3%
look: 5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 2

Three Philosophers (2004), on tap at the Belgian Room in NYC for an Ommegang event. The appearance was stunning: a rich dark red color, almost syrupy, and a large but quickly fading head. It looked incredible in a large wine glass. That said, I found the aroma a little disappointing. It smelled primarily malty and sweet, but, I thought, deserved to be much more pronounced.

When it came to drinking it, though, this beer did not disappoint at all. Moderately thick and a little bubbly, it was a real pleasure to sip, and the taste was extremely complex; with each sip I noticed another flavor. Malty and sweet are followed by a slight yeasty taste and sour cherries, with a number of other flavors, spicy and roasted, that I couldn't quite pick out. It tasted quite peaty and smokey throughout--reminding me of Scotch whisky. The alcohol was well masked at first but became increasingly (and, I thought, surprisingly) pronounced as the beer warmed.

Between the thickness and the strength and complexity of flavor, this really is best enjoyed slowly, in small amounts, and without food; as much as I enjoyed it, I could only have one small glass in an evening. But I'll happily have that one glass any opportunity I get.

greebsnarf, Aug 24, 2006
Photo of BabaJohn
4.15/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Looks like a nice, dark red wine with some brown tints. Head fades fast, in its place comes some consistent and evenly placed streams of carbonation. Smells sour and malty, with cherry and caramel aromas. A delicious clean taste up front, very sweet and wine-like, cherries, grapes, bitter greens. Nice alcohol warmth follows. The carbonation is well integrated. Some slightly roasted, smoky flavors as well, predominantly in the aftertaste. Slightly dry all in all, but this trait is presented well. Goes straight to my head; drink slowly. Mmm…

BabaJohn, Aug 24, 2006
Photo of mynie
4.1/5  rDev -1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3

2003 Vintage.

Pours a beautiful bubbly dark rust cherry. Bubbly bubbles, very bubbly, huge big pretty bubbles visible miles away from the class. It's all topped off by a rocky retentive head.

Smells sweet, sour, and cidery. A little too strong, maybe--I can only imagine how intense a fresh bottle's odor would be!

Tastes great. Complexity grows as it warms. At first you're overwhelmed with the two styles that are blended, you get the sharp tart cherries and sour yeast of the lambic and then the spicy burn of a quad. The stages become more pronounced as your pallete adjusts. It still starts out tart, but the chewy lambic yeast comes more into play. Then it shoots into a sweet and spicy quadrupel that tastes like a very strong ommegang--bitter start, very sweet and fruity middle, and then a bitter end. It all ends on a nice alcohol burn.

This tastes a bit more alcoholic than it is, and that hampers drinkabliity a little bit, but it's well worth it otherwise.

mynie, Aug 23, 2006
Photo of ChillMike
4.1/5  rDev -1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a very deep and dark plumish amber color, with a medium sized light brown head, that doesn't seem to leave much lacing. Smells of sweet malts, chocolate, and cherries, a very pleasant smell that begs to be drank. A waterfall of flavors hits the palette upon first taste. I first get plenty of chocolate flavor, some malty flavors, then sugar cane, followed by the slightly sour cherry lambic flavor to finish it off. Leaves a very pleasant aftertaste. Quite enjoyed this one, however, it is about 2 years old, I wonder how it tasted upon fresh brewing.

ChillMike, Aug 19, 2006
Photo of beerogre
4.72/5  rDev +14%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

As a general rule, when I visit the beer store after finishing work on Friday and make my selections for the weekend, I like to look for something new. Something a little bit different, something of an experiment. After sampling this beer for the second time (the first was several weeks ago) I have already decided that this will definitely be one of next Friday's purchases and thus, once again, one of next weekend's highlights.

It's hard to put into words how impressed I am with Brewery Ommegang's products and drinking this beer once more only serves to reinforce how highly I rate them.

I've been trying quite a lot of Belgian beers in the last few months and as great of a time as I've had with that (and it has been wonderful) I really don't think I've enjoyed any of them more than the pleasure I derive from the Ommegang beers.

Comparing this beer to other Quadrupels, I've had St. Bernardus Abt 12 many times, Trappistes Rochefort 10 several times recently, and Avery's The Reverend (read my other reviews to see how highly I rate Avery) and to be honest I'm reaching for the shelf with the Ommegang.

It reminds me of when I used to go to the horse races back in England. Sometimes a famous owner like the Aga Khan IV would have horses at the event and you always knew they were going to be class horses. Well, for me, I always know it's going to be a class beer when it says Ommegang on the label.

Ommegang beers: First past the post.

beerogre, Aug 13, 2006
Photo of dancinwillie
4.55/5  rDev +9.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Poured from a 750 ml bottle marked 2005 into a pint glass.

Giant head on this one, had to top off with another pour, due to huge head. The result is a creamy looking, off white head that rises above the glass, much like a root beer float. The brew itself is an inviting shade of red that comes as close to black as it possibly could.

Aroma is dominated by cherries, with the yeast coming through minimally.

The taste is very sweet upfront. A complex mixture of sour cherries, yeast, and a solid malt backbone. Taste a little chocolate on the back end. Cherry leads the flavor, but not overwhelming at all. This is a very complex beer. Very delicious too. Picking up what may be vanilla as well. My, this is good!

Mouthfeel is wonderful. Thick without being overbearing, and nowhere near thin. Smooth, and refreshing, and left me wanting more.

Overall, I would say for the price, and the quality of Three Philosophers, this is a HIGHLY drinkable quad. Definately going to be putting it into my regular rotation.

dancinwillie, Aug 09, 2006
Photo of JBStith
4.13/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Ommegang Three Philosophers. I am enjoying Belgian styles the more I get inot them.

A: Pours a nice deep ruby brown. A bit hazy with a thick tan head that disapates fairly quickly.

S: Great malt aromas with a hint of sweetness and black cherries. Little to no hop araoma. I almost got a nose full of beer on this one it smelled so good.

T: Similar to smell. Traditional yeast sourness followed by sweet and earthy malts. Darks fruits are noticable and finished with subtly warm alcohol.

M&D: Medium mouthfeel and body. Nice balance between sweet, sour, and alcohol. I could have more than one or two if the high abv didn't knock me down so quickly.

I will definitely have this beer again. My girfriend even liked it.

JBStith, Aug 08, 2006
Photo of atozymurgy
4.38/5  rDev +5.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

As great as this beer is, it's even better with the right food pairing...

Pours with a huge, long-lasting head, even with a slow careful pour. The color is deep, rich brown, almost black, but with ruby highlights. Very enticing.

The aroma is thick, with lots of malt, noticeable cherries, and hints of bitter roastiness, slight sourness, and a slight whiff of chocolate.

The taste is almost beyond description. One of the most complex beers around. It starts sweet and malty, but this is quickly balanced by roasty bitterness and a touch of sourness. The cherry flavor perfectly balances the richness of this beer, without being overwhelming. The slight notes of chocolate also add roast and bitterness, but it's different here and complements the cherries beautifully.

This beer really fills the mouth, though it's surprisingly light given how big it is. It goes down very easily, especially with the help of the sourness. Not exactly refreshing, but I could easily drink more than one (if I'm not standing).

Now to the food. This might not work so well with most entrees, but there are few better dessert beers around, IMO. With a dark chocolate cake, a cherry cheesecake, or other rich dessert this beer shines. But to my surprise, it goes nicely with lighter desserts too. For this tasting, I had it with a fresh raspberry and blueberry tart with B&J's vanilla ice cream and some excellent chocolate cookies. Absolutely perfect - the cherries and the sourness meld with the berries and the richness matches up well with the ice cream. Try this beer with dessert and you won't be disappointed.

atozymurgy, Aug 02, 2006
Photo of bonbright7
4.1/5  rDev -1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I had read about this ale in a traveler's memoirs of visiting the fabled Ommegang Brewery in Cooperstown, NY. The traveler suggested that this ale was an exceptional find after finding it in storage in a cave.

I tried this after finding it in a very warm Shoreline store today. I tried the dark quadrupel and it looked like any dark Belgian ale.
It poured well into an oatmeal head and it tasted like the dark ale of Westmalle with a slight bite to it.

It was very good for the length of the bottle, but I wondered if it would be better in colder weather.

bonbright7, Jul 29, 2006
Photo of sinstaineddemon
3.53/5  rDev -14.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A - this quad pours a dark ruby red color, with thick medium tan foamy head, moderate amounts of swift carbonation are present

S - as anticipated, strong aromas of cherries are big and up front, smells like maraschinoed cherries as opposed to fresh ones, there is also a strong alcohol aroma present

T - the cherry flavor persists of course, but its kind of dulled by the thicker nearly chewy maltiness of it, almost bready

M&D - kind of strong, but easy down, the girls thought it was a bit strong, but i enjoyed it, a little too thick, but very tasty, i prefer the cherries in NGWBR, but MUCH better the SA Cherry Wheat

sinstaineddemon, Jul 28, 2006
Photo of thelagerheads
3.45/5  rDev -16.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

I fixed up a yeoman's feast while Trüb strained to open the vintage Three Philosophers with his mustachio heavily persperating into the glory hole of nectar. Afterall, one should never bloody his apron with the tumescence of ghoulish beers while his dick-butler(euphemism for personal home-plebe) lurks near! Well, this wasn't as ghastly as it was NOT BEER. It was undercarbonated BAMPAGNE. A gassy little beer in a big time bottle. It uncorked, it bit and it sang like bubbly. Not even the dancing porkchops could make it beer. The peppers of yellow, red and green cajoled it to be but it could not. I even asked it politely to salutate with a ham-fisted beer 'ello but it said no sir. Get your violin and bree cheese out because the French waiter and weird sounding police cars are going to buzz by your summertime window with this one. Rap tap table tap.

thelagerheads, Jul 27, 2006
Photo of Beerzebub
4.38/5  rDev +5.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Poured fairly gently in a Chimay goblet, beautiful creamy cream-colored head. Largely dissipates, but a layer remains. Dark reddish brown, like Irish breakfast tea if it gets cold and clouds up, opaque except at edges. Smells like brown bread and spice cake, with chocolate sauce, a little brandy, some fruit - black cherry, cherry preserves, peach.

Great creamy mouthfeel, very nicely controlled fizz. Sweet malt, spice cake, Christmas pudding. Nice fruit. Hint of chocolate sauce, less than nose. Alcohol is slightly noticeable, but pleasant, like a faint whiff of brandy. Sweetness is restrained, for a quadrupel (thankfully). Faint bitterness, this must be balancing the sweetness. Really drinkable, for the style.

Delicious, and balanced. The taste lives up to the nose. This is really good.

Beerzebub, Jul 26, 2006
Photo of beermanbrian
4.08/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Deep amber red color with a foamy tan head. Nice retention on the head. First sniff is full or dark fruits, cherries and plums. Followed by a sweet maltyness. The smooth mouthfeel is the first impression when you taste this one. The flavors are rich and powerful but somehow hidden by the smoothness of this beer. Nice maltyness and mild cherry flavor show themselves. The high ABV is amazingly well hidden. Another winner from Ommegang.

beermanbrian, Jul 26, 2006
Photo of gonzo138
4.33/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A- very dark blood red color, light carbonated head with nice lacing
S- smelling sweetley of cherries, with a very rich toffee like undertones
T- very dark with rich flavor, cherry taste is not as pronounced as one might expect, masks the alcohol taste well, I noticed if you take a small sip you will taste more of the lambic, but if you take a larger one you will be overwhelmed by the quad taste
M- coats mouth, thick with good carbonation, taste fades away fairly quickly
D-Good drink for a cold day, a definite sipping brew

gonzo138, Jul 25, 2006
Photo of 51mmz0rz
4.22/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

A: Nice tight foamy tan head. Great opaque deep caramel color with garnet hues around the edges. Opaque and cloudy in the light. There are tiny bubbles floating up as well. Beautiful lacing, some of the best I've seen.

S: Powerful dark fruits and alcohol. Honey sweetness. Smells like it's going to be sticky.

T: Sweet and complex dark fruit up front. A touch of yeast might be hidden. A hit of alcohol followed by bitterness, which lingers.

M: Extremely full and creamy. Amazingly silky smooth. Small tingling bubbles, but a bit dry on the finish.

D: Really tasty, but also a bit overpowering at times. A great beer, but not for it's drinkability I'd say.

This beer has great flavor, but don't try to rush this. I was on the fence on whether to give taste a 5, but I figured I don't have enough quad experience to do so.

51mmz0rz, Jul 25, 2006
Photo of ggaughan
4.38/5  rDev +5.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

I first had this beer at Monk's Cafe in Philadelphia a few years ago for the debut of this great beer and have been in love with it since. I cracked open a 2005 750 ml bottle of this tonight and decided it was time to finally review it.

The beer poured a deep hazy amber color with a thick tan head that disapated rather quickly and left behind a solid ring around the edge of the glass and some floating islands in the middle. The beer has a very distinct aroma of cloves, yeast, cherries and maybe some other dried fruits. Sweet and malty and hard to put down. The taste is a bit tart but balances out well with the cherry taste, malty sweetness and then rounds out with an alcohol kick on the back end which is pleasing to the palate. Based on the high abv, this is a bigger beer to drink but being very smooth is is fairly easy to drink as well.

ggaughan, Jul 22, 2006
Three Philosophers Belgian Style Blend (Quadrupel) from Brewery Ommegang
93 out of 100 based on 5,393 ratings.