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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)

Educational use only; do not reuse.

2,008 Reviews

(Read More)
Reviews: 2,008
Hads: 6,018
Avg: 4.12
pDev: 20.15%
Wants: 340
Gots: 1,303 | FT: 21
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: Reviews & Ratings
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Three Philosophers Belgian Style Blend (Quadrupel) Alström Bros
Reviews: 2,008 | Hads: 6,018
Photo of smakawhat
3.26/5  rDev -20.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured from the bottle into a goblet. Vintage 2011.

Same appearance as it's younger abbey ale sibling. Body color is a great dark ruby and somewhat clear. Snapping noises come from the bubbles of the head. Seems to leave a good puck as well on the top.

Mild cherry, malt muted, very similar to regular abbey ale but seems a little thicker... perhaps bolder. I was hoping for something more pronounced but it's just not happening.

Taste is virtually nearly identical to it's sibling, with maybe a hint of chocolate milk on the finish. I am missing or not getting the fruit background off this at all, or a big malt caramel back bone for a quad. Somewhat milkshake like in body with a little fizz which is a classic touch, but missing the flavor punch I think needed for this style.

Overall I am not really that impressed by this quad, but it's certainly a good passable brew. Not for me.

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Photo of Billolick
4.7/5  rDev +14.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

enjoyed from a growler from Half time in Poughkeepsie
Growler sat in my fridge for about a month (they said it would only be good for a week, Ha.)
very dark, very flavorful, wonderful taste, mouthfeel and long finish.
Nice lingering cherry finish. Srong malt, candi sugar and burnt fruit flavors. Exceptional creation in brewing, seek this one out if youre a Belgian lover.

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Photo of BARFLYB
3.15/5  rDev -23.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

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

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

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

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

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

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

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Photo of Gavage
4.57/5  rDev +10.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

This was a great find. The ale poured a hazy bronze color with a relatively thin head. The aroma was unique. Earthy tones, cherries, other fruits, and lovely sweetness were easily detectable in the nose.

The flavor was exceptional and complex, as sweet malt and cherries were most dominant, but some spiciness and bitterness rounded out the flavor. Alcohol was slighlty noticeable. Flavors slighlty changed while the ale warmed during the session, keeping this a very interesting beer rating session.

Very smooth mouthfeel. The malt and cherries rode the tongue after swallowing for a short time. A slow drinking ale.

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Photo of Alieniloquium
4.03/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

750 mL bottle poured into an RR -tion glass.

Appearance - Deep ruby body with an ample off-white head. Two to three fingers at least. Good retention and a smidgen of lacing.

Smell - Banana esters, cloves, some cherries. I feel like the cherries cover the malt aromas that would really round it out nicely.

Taste - Bananas, apple, and cherries again. A very nice fruit flavor that again lacks a bit of depth that some stronger caramel malt would solve. It's certainly more prevalent in the flavor than the taste, but still leaves a bit to be desired. Earthy dry finish.

Mouthfeel - Very highly carbonated that distracts a bit from the flavor. Looking for more of a slick mouthfeel to enhance the depth of flavors.

Overall - Perhaps my review is a bit harsh, because it tastes great. American Quads are always missing just a hint of something, but I love the style, so it's tough to criticize too much.

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Photo of Gueuzedude
4.32/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Brewed 2003, Sampled February 2004
As I pop the cork I get an immediate aroma of cherries. The cork did not pop very vigorously though, so it seems that this may not be very highly carbonated. It pours though with a vigourous carbonation. It is a muddy amber-ruby color and is toppped by a light brown thick head. There are meaty, malty, cherry, and alcoholic notes in the aroma. As my nose incorporates the aroma the smell of cherries fades and one is left with a spicy Belgian ale nose.

This beer has a creamy mouthfeel to it, but it is not too thick for a Belgian quadrupel, in fact it would be on the light side for some of that designation. It is fairly sweet, and finishes with an alcoholic astringency which is not all that strong. There is definitely some cherries in this beer, but I like that it is fairly subtle and is only one component of this beer. This beer has a soft acidity to it, that is not directly traceable to the Kriek addition. There are fruit notes of raisins, plums, and fig. Though it is sweet up front it finishes with a spicy astringent dryness that is evocative of some herb/ spice that I can't quite think of.

This is a very well made beer. You can tell that a world class brewer put this beer together. Having said that it is missing something; though it is quite complex a couple of other dimensions would be wonderful here. Perhaps a bit of acidity & a bit of Brettanomyces character would be wonderful (I know this is a ridiculous request as these things are not too controllable, but De Dolle gets some of this right, at least sometimes). A very rich beer that is quite satisfying, I definitely like this best of the Ommegang products.

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Photo of DoubleJ
4.07/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

I celebrated my 22nd birthday a few nights ago with one of these. From it's 12 ounce bottle and poured into a chalice, on to the beer:

Copper to red in color with a nice two finger head. In the body, a glimpse of sediment floats around. Smell reminds me of black licorish, yeast, spice, and cherries. The first thing you think when this beer hits your tongue is how much cherry is in the flavor. The beer actually has a bit of cherry lambic mixed into the receipe, but it sometimes became cloying. More black licorish, with touhes of bourbon and banana. A sweet treat to end my night.

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Photo of Mebuzzard
4.3/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A nice quad, this beer right here. While I'd assume never to mess with a quad recipe, this blended beer is perddy good.

Pours a muddy-water brown, murky, rich. Nice thick off-brown head. Darn good looking. Filmy streaks though

Aroma is cherry and banana. Some baked caramel and dark chocolate. Some earthen spices and rich orchard fruits.

The cherry is there in the taste, but leaves the tannin quality behind. Thus we get the 'meat' of the cherry, dark and just a hint tart. The banana fades and the earthy spices come in, some nutmeg and soaked raisin. Dark plum subtleties on the end. Alcohol is fairly well hidden, but does come in on the end.

Very nice quad, perhaps a touch on the "too fruity" side--if I had to pick something

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Photo of johnnnniee
4.06/5  rDev -1.5%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a crystal clear deep caramel color with red highlights and has a two finger head that lasts forever. Lace almost coated the entire glass. Smells of caramel and dried fruit. Has that yeasty estery taste as well as the caramel and cherries. Has a high level of carbonation. Very nice sipper. I would have liked the cherries to be up front a little more, but still a very nice brew.

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Photo of tempest
3.85/5  rDev -6.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 4

The only blended quad I've had and it was interesting to same the least. I poured a dark brown with a tinge of red. As it warms, the sour cherry smell really comes out. In general I found the lambic to dominate this beer, losing some of the more subtle flavors. There were still some good dark fruit flavors, but I'd prefer more focus on them. Only actual negative is that more the longest time the beer was overcarbonated to the point of making it hard to taste.

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Photo of Halcyondays
3.76/5  rDev -8.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

12 oz. bottle, 2008 vintage,

A: Pours red-brown with a solid off-white head with excellent retention, some lacing.

S: A lot of sweet molasses with a hint of cherry.

T: Nice light brown sugar mixed with a lot a dark malt. The kriek, while being only 2% of the beer plays a more substantial role, adding a bit of fruit and medicinal character.

M: Mouthfeel is a bit on the light side for a close to 10% ale, off-dry finish, not bad.

D: Another quality ale and blend from the fellows at Ommegang, I wish it wasn't so pricey, it's good stuff. One of the very first beers I ever had, back in '05 I had it without knowing what it was and it really opened my eyes up to Belgian styles along with Orval, so I'm very thankful.

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Photo of BlackHaddock
4.07/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Finally got my hands on a bottle of this on 31st Jan 2014: had to share it though. Someone very kind (unknown) had brought it to a bottle exchange in De Bierboom, lucky me (I had two medium sized samples, which came to about half a pint).

Loved it.

Deep amber with a slight haze (been poured a few times before I grabbed it), tanned head on both my pours.

Malty molasses hit the nose and taste buds straight away, this is a true malty brew, but there is so much more to it than just a heavy hand of maltiness. Dark berries, chocolate and cherry hints are easy to find in the mouth, some people will pick up other notes with the flavours but my taste buds were aching from all the wonderful beers I was gorging on during the bottle swap and I most likely missed a few subtle esters and tastes.

I need a bottle all to myself!

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

Served on tap at Bocktown.

Snifter glass, mahogony in color with a large off white head that kept well and had a fine lace.

Nose was of ripe fruit, apples and malts. Bourbon like booziness.
Drinks very smooth and is a sipper for sure. Nice apple and malt, with a nice roasted edge. Alcohal is certainly present, and I believe this to be a fresh batch, so that is to be expected.

Very tasty and glad I got to try this, especially on tap. Would love to try cellaring this. Reccommended.

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Photo of GarthDanielson
4.25/5  rDev +3.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Poured from a 750ml cork and cage into a stemmed chalice, the beer is a deep, ruby-tinted mahogany coloring with a foamy, bubbly, dense, off-white head. Aromas of date, fig, tart cherry, molasses, caramel, toffee, nutty highlights, and a spice blend of cinnamon, nutmeg, clove, and all spice, all on a bready backbone. Flavors are very rich and sweet forward, with toffee and rich caramel blending with a tart and slightly sour cherry character. The old world fruit richness comes in shortly after, providing depth and layering alongside the spice blend and a slowly building booze warmth. As you continue to drink, you start to pick up some earthy tones, as well as subtle funky yeast characteristics. Heavy beer, with a full, slick feel. The aftertaste is more of the old world fruit notes, slightly cloying but very balanced, lingering on through the slick, slow finish. Great beer!

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Photo of Georgiabeer
3.88/5  rDev -5.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a hazy reddish brown with a moderate head that sticks around but leaves no lacing.

Smellis complex and winey, but with a sharp stewed sour cherry smell in the background. This isn't unpleasant, but it could be more well integrated.

Taste is better, and more balanced. Here the fruit is more subtle and doesn't predominate. Instead you have a nice layered malt profile with sweet sour underpinning of cherry and some slight hops to give a little spiciness.

Mouthfeel is also quite balanced somewhat crisp, somewhat creamy, nice carbonation level.

Quite drinkable- refreshing, but just complicated enough to keep your interest.

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Photo of Zorro
4.2/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

2004 vintage here.

Pours a cloudy reddish brown brew.

Smell is melon and fruit and alcohol. Mild tobacco smell and faint spice, and a lacing of clover and honey.

Taste is mildly sweet with a pleasant mild cherry flavor. Complex flavors here, miscellaneous fruit flavors and a very warming alcohol sensation. Dry woody and mild bitterness. Over all this is a well-balanced flavor profile.

Mouthfeel is good, extremely fine bubbles like champagne.

Very drinkable brew, this would be excellent for a holiday brew.

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Photo of Gobzilla
4.2/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: poured a dark brown with brown highlights with a thin head that left a little sticky lacing on the glass.

S: I really get more of a banana aroma then cherries alongside belgian yeast, brown sugar, and fruit esters. There is also a little booze presence.

T: the cherries are there on the taste but faint and the banana is still a little stronger than the cherries. The brew has the signature belgian yeast brown sugar for a quad and also has a hint of spice with slight fruit notes.

M: the brew was medium body with a fair amount of carbonation that had a sweet creamy and boozy finish.

D: it drank really well and was a decent quad offering that tasted legit but honestly didn't have a big kriek flavor and nose like I thought it would; it was still tasty.

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Photo of weeare138
4.1/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Appears a ruby brown with a small tan head that slowly dissapates. Lots of sediment rests in the bottom of the glass. Some sticky lacing clings to the glass.
Smell is of sweet chocolate covered cherries and syrup.
Taste is richly of chocolate cherries, caramel, candy sugar, and yeast.
Mouthfeel is smooth, creamy, tingly, with a bit of a sugary sweetness lingering towards the front of the tongue. Seems to have a rich, truffle like finish.
Drinkability is a little less than good b/c it was hard for me to enjoy it while sipping. The alcohol is very evident and it made it difficult for me to want to finish the big bottle or look for any more. If you split this amongst 3 or 4 people to cap the night off, that's more like the speed of this one.

Finger licking good.

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Photo of biegaman
4.25/5  rDev +3.2%
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.

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Photo of TheSevenDuffs
4.23/5  rDev +2.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Tasting notes from 1-11-11
On tap at Zenos in State College, PA

A - Dark amber with red glow. Small amount of cream coloured head

S - Yeast, raisins, dark fruit, brown sugar

T - Dark fruit, brown sugar, caramel, hop bitterness, strawberry, raspberry

M - Medium body, silky, smooth

D - A touch boozy but very drinkable for a quad.

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Photo of Wasatch
4.3/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A - This is a 2004 edition. Pours a dark red/brown color, nice carbonation, huge tan head which lasts a long time, awesome lacing throughout.

S - Scents of sweet malts, cherries, and caramel.

T - The taste is tangy and with a nice sweet after taste. Alcohol content is hidden well.

M - Medium body. This brew is well rounded with a slight carbonated feel in the mouth.

D - Very drinkable. Would recommend and buy again.

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Photo of lacqueredmouse
4.68/5  rDev +13.6%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

2007 Vintage. Wonderful looking bottle. Caged and corked, decorks with a sucking thunk sound. Love it.

Pours thick as treacle, a gorgeous burgundy red colour with excellent clarity. Head is a consistent almost-pure-white crown of filmy bubbles. This is a majestic, serious looking beer - the colour is magnificent, and it looks like a wonderful, wonderful brew.

Coppery sour on the nose. Beautiful notes of Belgian yeast, roasted malt, and a citrus/fruit acidity that sets all the rest off nicely. Not overtly strong, but subtle and complex. Wonderful.

There's layers to the palate, all delicate, but intermingling in a wonderful way. An initial hint of alcohol heat is mellowed by a sweet, slick character like melted candi sugar. This in turn dries out a little, leaving a residual cherry-sour character that explores the taste-buds. Aside from this, there's a tessitura of citrus sitting above all, and a darker spicy undertone to everything. What a wonderful harmony of so many disparate elements - this is a magnificent brew, thoroughly delicious.

Mouthfeel is lighter than you would expect, like the strong Belgian ales in this regard. Doesn't leave the palate overwhelmed, which is what is required of an ale this strong.

Despite the strength, the lightness of the body, and the lighter, fruitier characteristics of this beer make it supremely drinkable. This is a truly wonderful brew. Not just one of the best Belgium ales brewed outside Belgium, but one of the best Belgian ales period.

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Photo of Duff27
4.1/5  rDev -0.5%
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!

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Photo of JohnGalt1
3.99/5  rDev -3.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Hard to believe I haven't reviewed this one yet.... Picked up the 750 from Bier Thirty in Bown over the weekend... Paid a very reasonable $9 and change... Pours with a long lasting tan head... great lacing. The brew is hazy amber.

Big Belgian malt bomb on the nose... deep malt and caramel... dark fruits with apple and hints of cherry... Peppery with a background sweet clove.

Cherry presence is much bigger on the palate... it is pretty bright almost immediately and then moves quickly into the maltiness and then resides primarily as a tart kriek essence. Malts are not nearly as complex as the aroma... light raisin and dark toast. Personally I would like a slightly sweeter malt complexity mid palate to balance the kriek acidity and make the Belgian phenols bloom.

Body is light/medium with the expected great carbonation.

Very well done... Ommegang does Belgians right and this is no exception.


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Photo of barleywinefiend
2.71/5  rDev -34.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

A: Poured a reddish gold with good carbonation and a white head with reddish hues

S: Cherries, peppers, Earthy with some booze

T: Immediate cherries, too much here. Some dark fruits muted by cherries, Earthy notes with elements of pepper and wood

Mouthfeel: Thin, a little hot and to much cherry going on.

O: Cherry overkill

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Three Philosophers Belgian Style Blend (Quadrupel) from Brewery Ommegang
92 out of 100 based on 2,008 ratings.