Long Strange Tripel - Boulevard Brewing Co.

Not Rated.
Long Strange TripelLong Strange Tripel

Educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
92
outstanding

449 Reviews
THE BROS
100
world-class

(Read More)
Reviews: 449
Hads: 1,467
rAvg: 4.13
pDev: 8.72%
Wants: 129
Gots: 255 | FT: 2
Brewed by:
Boulevard Brewing Co. visit their website
Missouri, United States

Style | ABV
Tripel |  9.20% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: homebrewhawk on 11-24-2007

Lately it occurs to us that if, back in 1989, you planned on starting a brewery in the back of your carpentry shop, you'd been wise to seek out someone like Harold “Trip” Hogue. A collector of ancient Volvos, Trip was well qualified for the make-do engineering required to coax recalcitrant equipment out of retirement and into making the first Boulevard beers. Today, he is our longest-tenured employee. We offer this rich, golden Tripel in grateful tribute to dedication, everywhere.

23 IBU
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
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Reviews: 449 | Hads: 1,467
Photo of illidurit
3.48/5  rDev -15.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Thanks to whoever brought this bottle to the RBSG 08 Grand Tasting. Gold pour with an excellent facsimile of a lacy Belgian head. Overripe green apple aroma, some sweet citrus. Flavor is doughy malt with apple and banana esters and a touch of clove spiciness. Medium-thin body, well-carbonated, dry finish. A pretty standard tripel. (332 characters)

Photo of kojevergas
3.5/5  rDev -15.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Picked this up at Lukas Liquor and served into a hybrid stem-snifter/tulip glass near me parents' gaff in high altitude Castle Rock, Colorado per my friend blakelive784's recommendation. Reviewed live. Expectations are extremely high given my friend's recommendation as well as the brewery; also, I loved Love Child No. 3 and I understand that this is the base beer for that one. 9.0% ABV according to my bottle. Bottle is 1 pint 9.4 oz with interesting label art and a hood-and-wire cap (aka cage) over a branded cork. Batch number 413Q16; 10-2013. Reviewed as a tripel because it identifies as such. Smokestack series.

Served cold - straight from me fridge - and allowed to warm over the course of consumption. Side-poured with standard-vigor as no carbonation issues are anticipated.

A: Pours about 80% foam. Head is three fingers wide and of beige colour. Okay thickness and creaminess. Not much frothiness. No lacing clings to the glass as the head recedes. Retention is fairly good - about 4-5+ minutes.

Body colour is a clear copper of above average vibrance. No yeast particles are visible. No bubble show.

Looks good for a tripel, but it's not a paragon by any means.

Sm: Floral hop character, luscious Belgian malts, clean barley, cream, and fresh clove and banana (from the yeast). Lemongrass. Nice subtle spiciness. Some orange fruit esters, but perhaps not much orange peel per se. Certainly a fruity aroma; green apple, light apricot, pear. Nails the style down. Good sweetness/bitterness balance, with an appealing lightly nectary sweetness edging out any light hop bitterness. Honey. Nectar. A pleasant approachable aroma of mild to moderate strength.

No alcohol is detectable.

T: Apricot, honey, light apple, light pear, decent nectar, pilsner malts, golden Belgian malts, clove, lemongrass, orange (fruit, not peel per se), and cilantro. Hop character is almost solely floral. Crackery malts. Some white pepper. Boy is there some balance here, though unfortunately the ABV does come through a biteen - especially in the third act. That said, the complexity and subtlety distract from the presence of alcohol - which in fairness is admittedly light - though a great beer in the style should be able to hide 9.0%.

Pretty good duration of flavour. Above average intensity and depth of flavour.

Mf: Smooth and wet. Somewhat soft. Good presence on the palate. Complements the flavour profile nicely. Not refreshing per se, but it is pleasant to drink - and quite approachable for the ABV. Good thickness and body. Dries towards the finish, helping it to coax out the next sip a biteen.

Not scratchy, harsh, gushed, hot, or oily.

Dr: Certainly drinkable for the well-hidden 9.0% ABV. A likable tripel that isn't strictly traditional, but then it might actually make some improvements. I'd get this one again, even if tripels aren't often a style I frequently gravitate towards. A pretty solid offering from Boulevard, and I can see why it made a good base for Love Child No. 3. Recommended for fans of the style; certainly one of the better American examples of the style that I've had. Not a unique or special beer, but certainly one I'd happily return to.

Alcohol is too present for it to quite be a "B", but it's a mighty fine tripel.

High B- (3,281 characters)

Photo of MMAJYK
3.53/5  rDev -14.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A. The bottle is very nice looking with quite a hippie looking label. I am really digging the far-out looking hop cone on the back side, too. Bright, deep gold with 2" of fluffy foam. Very clear.

S. Sweet from the Belgian candi sugar, a tad grassy and somewhat hoppy. Touch of booze, too.

T. A little grainy and harsh, but the Belgian yeast really throws off some tastes that make the beer stylistic.

M. Medium to sticky in the mouth with relatively high carbonation.

D. Not an excellent attempt, but a good one and an excellent beer name and label!! (558 characters)

Photo of OWSLEY069
3.53/5  rDev -14.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a hazy orange-ish to yellow color with an off white head. In the aroma, a light fruitiness and just a note of candy sugar. In the taste, a nice fruitiness, dryer yeast, and a mellow presence of candy sugar. A small bite and medium bodied mouthfeel, with a small dry fruit and note of alcohol in the aftertaste. Nice fruitiness and hides the ABV well. (356 characters)

Photo of BEERchitect
3.53/5  rDev -14.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A definate fruit-forward Tripel with high sweetness and leaving me wanting a bit more in complexity and hop balance.

the orange-golden colored beer carries a significant haze and a lot of yeast particles floating about. Seems to have a viscous look similar to pureed fruits. A creamy off-white head has great staying power while leaving a lot of lacing on the glass.

Appricots, apples, and pears are the dominant features in the nose. Light herbal notes (hops) decorate the edges and the phenolic spices are equally as light. Nice, but somewhat one-dimentional.

Flavors do much the same except for the sweet maltiness that amplifies the fruity esters. Towards the end of the glass, these features prove a bit too much.

As expected the mouthfeel tilts towards heavy sweetness, thickness, and dangerously close to syrupy and cloying notes. Alcohol warmth helps but doesn't dry the beer nearly enough.

I think that the flavors are quite appropriate but they are not balances well with phenols and other yeast character. The body makes me want a Chimay White. Thanks again Exiled! (1,081 characters)

Photo of n2185
3.56/5  rDev -13.8%
look: 2.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A: Pours a hazy orange with three fingers of beige head that recedes into a thin ring with little lacing.

S: Oranges and apricots up front with a floral, ginger-like aroma after. There are some banana and bubblegum aromas in there as well as some slight spices and a yeasty finish.

T: Lots of bready yeast flavors on the tongue, even with a decanted pour. There are some spice notes and a little citrus flavor as well, but the yeast and bready flavors dominate. Slight alcohol burn on the finish, too.

M: Medium body with mid-high carbonation, this beer has a bit thicker body than I prefer in tripels, but is still attenuated well enough that it's not sticky sweet.

O: A unique tripel. It's a bit thicker and darker than most tripels, but it works fairly well. I just wish it had a somewhat lighter body and less bread/yeast flavor. Still, a decent beer overall and at least it's not another sticky sweet bubblegum bomb like many tripels. (943 characters)

Photo of ChillMike
3.56/5  rDev -13.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Bright golden color with a nice white head and lots of carbonation bubbles.

S: Dry malt smell if that makes sense, some dough, alcohol and finished with a nice sugary smell. Not great but not bad.

T: Starts off with an alcohol taste but that's quickly wisked away with a nice sugar cane, clove and banana flavor nothing special but tasty enough.

MF: Light to medium body, a nice oily type of feel on the tongue, not as much carbonation as I would have expected.

D: Fairly decent, pretty good bang for the buck a bit high in the abv, but a nice one to share with friends. (579 characters)

Photo of stonequarrywest
3.57/5  rDev -13.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

750ml from Great Race BIF 2009

Hazy Gold/Orange color with some definite flavor crystals swimming around.
Big thick 2 inch fluffy white head with decent retention that left some average lacing.
Aroma is Sweet...bready...bit of Spice/clove and maybe a tad sour.
Taste is also sweet and spicy with fruity notes and the 9% abv comes out after a few glugs..Sharp carbonation on the tongue with average drinkability. (413 characters)

Photo of mscudder
3.58/5  rDev -13.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A - Looks a lot like an imperial IPA; rich amber hue with a white head. Pour retention.

S - Coriander, citrus, lemon, yeast and bready malts. Took some effort to extract all the aromas; too subtle.

T - Big citrus flavor here. ABV leaves a good amount of warmth on the rear after a nice appearance from some Belgian yeasts. Finishes dry and refrains from any substantial sweetness throughout.

M - High carbonation, medium body and a large ABV presence.

O - Enjoyable, but far from the best Tripel I have ever had. (516 characters)

Photo of TruePerception
3.58/5  rDev -13.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Boulevard Smokestack's Long Strange Tripel. 9.2% ABV

A: Over two fingers of head, fades steadily to almost nothing. Very opaque and hazy. Peach. Grey-yellow in the dimple.

S: Hay, grass. Slight funk. Some kind of citrus note. Wild strawberry, perhaps? Yeah. Like what you might smell in a lighter strawberry blonde.

T/MF: Dry. Hay. Slight caramel. Barnyard towards the back, as it settles.

Not bad. I'd still prefer a dubbel or quad, but not bad.

Poured from a 12 oz. bottle, into a Belgian tulip glass. (508 characters)

Photo of Gueuzedude
3.58/5  rDev -13.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Batch Number: T8123; Sampled September 2008
There is lots of banana in this beer, first it smells of it as I am pouring this beer, but also the foam tastes of banana. Speaking of foam an not overly hard saw the head start to flow over the sides of my 25cl tulip glass, but I was able to react fast enough to slurp all of the excess foam; so no mess. The head stands a full four-fingers in height (including a finger above the rim of my glass) and is a pale tan color that is more the color of cream than anything. The beer is a has a nice copper hue to it as it sits on my desk, but shows a mostly clear, deep gold color when held up to the light. The aroma is a mix of grassy grain, spicy esters and fruit. Aromatic notes of bananas, definite clove, clean pepper, bubblegum / almost juicy-fruit esters, dusty-crushed grain aromas, a touch of unsalted saltine cracker, an at times strong green apple note and a touch of warming alcohol are all easily noticeable (none are a stretch for me) if you spend a little time with the nose).

Well carbonated still (even after resting for the last ten minutes), the beer foams up as it rolls across my tongue. Fairly dry, but it still has some sweetness that is accentuated by the fruity esters and the higher alcohol notes that pepper this beer. Sweet, malt accented banana flavors mix with sweet clove notes, touches of cotton candy, wild-flower honey, and ripe melon notes provide the sweet flavors in this beer. The sweetness is only lightly offset by pepper-like higher alcohol notes in the finish, a spicy clove notes in the finish that gets turpene heavy, a touch of dried ginger and a light astringency and bitterness that lingers on in the finish. Fairly light bodied as a decent Tripel should be, it has a touch of viscous heft to it, but is far more quaffable than a 9% alcohol beer should be.

Can be a bit too hot and phenolic at times, but this is certainly an interesting Tripel. This is even tasty enough and I am certainly happy to find myself quaffing this for an evening.

Purchased: South Bay Drugs, Imperial Beach CA (2,078 characters)

Photo of cpetrone84
3.6/5  rDev -12.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Pour is slightly hazed golden yellow with a tight white head. Nose has a fair bit of tangy yeast and peppery spice up front. A bit of soapy hop and some lemon notes. Taste is a bit more soapy, yeast isn't quite as pronounced. Lemon is moderate, not sweet but the balance is a bit soapy. Body is a bit syrupy but the strong carb helps to balance it. (348 characters)

Photo of CHSLBrew
3.6/5  rDev -12.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

750 mL bottle poured into a snifter.

A-Dark golden beer, slightly hazed, topped with a large fluffy-white head, which retained moderately well, eventually down to a sparse bubble layer. The head is easily resurected with a coaxing swirl of the beer.

S-Spicy clove, along with other spicy characters. A slight yeasty, bready character with an almost semi-sweet maltiness.

T-Sweet, bready malts, immense yet somewhat delicate spiciness. With the characteristic lack of hops, the spiciness helped to round out this malt-bomb. Fruitiness as well, perhaps of the pear and apple persuasions.

M-High, effervescent carbonation. Medium-heavy body, masked by the carbonation.

D-Moderate. Not the best hit from Boulevard's Smokestack Series, but by no means a miss. This would be an enjoyable brew to share with a few friends on a cool spring evening. (845 characters)

Photo of bennetj17
3.61/5  rDev -12.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Lightly hazed, sun-like orange with a thick white foam holding steady. Fairly strong carbonation rising to the top. The aroma is rather unremarkable. Just some faint citrus spice and Belgian yeast notes. Not bad, very basic for the style.

Citrus and melon fruit flavor, lightly sweet with some bready alcohol notes toward the finish. Decent spiciness but not too much in the way of complexity. I wish there was a bit more bitter contrast in the end to match the maltiness. Light mouthfeel, a bit slick, fine carbonation.

Overall not a bad Tripel. Alot of American versions don't really come close, but this is pretty standard, just nothing special. Worth trying if you can find it... (687 characters)

Photo of Vixie
3.63/5  rDev -12.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours a cloudy gold/orange color, and forms a roughly 2" white head. Looks like what I expect from the style, which is a good thing.

The first smell is malt, not surprisingly. Can also detect a bit of spice in there, mainly pepper.

There is quite a bit of malt at first, as expected. Can detect some citrus notes, and true to the smell, there is pepper in there. Not the most complex of this style I've had, but still a nice flavor.

Feel is fairly typical of the style, enough carbonation to keep it from feeling too thin.

Although not up to my standard for this style, which is La Fin Du Monde, still a nice beer. It is a bit spicier than usual, which makes it an interesting choice. This one is very reasonably priced here, making it an excellent bargain. (762 characters)

Photo of BobZ
3.63/5  rDev -12.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

750ml 25.4 Oz. bottle. Poured into my Duvel Tulip.

Appearance: Builds a large frothy head, close to 3”, which hangs around. A very clear (for bottle conditioned ale) bright orange yellow, good lacing.

Smell: Spicy pear and green apple aromas.

Taste: As in the nose, pear and green apple flavors are sweet upfront then there is a hoppy spicy finish with bitterness. The warmth from the spice or perhaps from both the spice and the ABV lingers on the palate with the bitterness, maybe too much so, not a horrible taste but not all that pleasant of a finish.

Mouthfeel: Relatively smooth but the burn at the finish spoils this one a bit.

Overall: It fits the sweet up-front, bitter at the finish Tripel profile. The white fruit meaning pear and apple flavors make it a bit unique; however, the finish keeps this from being a very good example of the style. Glad I tried it but there are many other tripels I prefer. (920 characters)

Photo of KYGunner
3.67/5  rDev -11.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

This bright golden Tripel is simply alive in a rush of carbonation that pops and fizzles like Alka-Seltzer. The eruption of fizz holds on for quite a while before slowly ebbing away.

The aroma is strong but reminds of Juicyfruit gum. I've never quite got what scents and flavors surround this gum but assume it's a fruity citrus. I gathered a yeasty tone and it was followed by a clove like scent.

The flavors were similar to the aromas but the Juicyfruit resembles bubblegum a bit more. The flavor is sweet, maybe even syrupy, with some Apple or pear.

The feel is not as carbonated as one may expect with the rush of bubbling in appearance. Light, refreshing but not thin at all this hides the strong ABV very well. (719 characters)

Photo of birchstick
3.68/5  rDev -10.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - pours an orangish yellow with a nice two finger head with a ton of lacing

S - oranges and pears stick out with some yeast. Very fruity nose

T - taste follows the nose closely. Starts off with sweet grainy malts that is overwhelmed by orange/coriander flavors with a bit of nutmeg and clove. The coriander is the most dominant fla or. End with some spicy hops. Interesting.

M - lots of carbonation, but not as much as the lacing would make you believe with a medium body

D - interesting tripel here. Reminded me of an amped up wit or Weiss bier. Pretty different tripel, (577 characters)

Photo of Vancer
3.68/5  rDev -10.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Massive "pop" from the corked bottle, massive carbonated pour into my Corsendonk snifter. The massive white head does settle into a pillow-top floating on the amber orange brew.

Orange dominates the fruity aroma and presents itself in the quaff. Taste is on the dry side for a tripel, this reminds me more of a strong Belgian pale ale than tripel. No hint of any alcohol in it.

Still pretty tasty and a decent cut at a difficult beer to brew, but I doubt if I would seek out another bottle of it. (498 characters)

Photo of drabmuh
3.68/5  rDev -10.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Yay more smokestack beers. This beer served in an imperial pilsner glass. Beer is orange and really hazy. Forms a big head that leaves a lot of lacing on the glass. Beer is moderately carbonated but the head doesn't have any staying power.

Aroma is sweet and estery, smells pretty good. Some yeasty breadiness in there too.

Hmmm....this beer is medium to light in body and has some carbonation on the palate. Beer finishes slightly dry with an out of place bitterness on the back that makes this beer slightly hard to drink. Not my favorite tripel for sure. (559 characters)

Photo of spoony
3.68/5  rDev -10.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

From notes on October 4, 2012.

From a 750 ml into a tulip.

A-The brew has a light golden color. The three finger head was relatively short-lived, but a few visible streams of carbonation kept it from disappearing completely.

S-I picked up some green apples, some grains, and quite a bit of alcohol spice. There is a little yeasty funk, too, but the funk is different than most...and I can't quite put my finger on it.

T-The taste follows the smell pretty closely with a nice, alcoholic spice being the primary characteristic for me. I did not get a lot of fruit and there was very little hop character. A little on the hot side for me.

M-Mostly dry, medium bodied with a pretty solid hit of prickly carbonation.

O-This tripel was not what I was expecting and I'll admit that it took me until the second glass from the bomber before I began to enjoy it. There was the typical tripel spice profile, but I missed a lot of the banana and yeast flavors that I was expecting. Nevertheless, it was complex and interesting enough to keep drinking. (1,046 characters)

Photo of Squelch
3.69/5  rDev -10.7%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: cloudy hazy loght tan colored. Thick billowy head that lingers. Minimal lacing.

Aroma: smells of sweet bread. Little hop aroma if any. Very typical to style

Taste: tastes like a triple. Nice sweetness with a bit of spiciness. Alcohol is evident up front. Yeast prevalent in flavors. Misses that zip of true belgians though. Nice try for a KC beer.

Mouthfeel: perfect to style. Medium to heavy even with the high carb. Some heat from the alcohol

Drinkability: nice b eer alcohol heat brings the drinkability down a bit. (536 characters)

Photo of smc143
3.7/5  rDev -10.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Up front, I loved this beer. It is strong, though, and after one, I felt it.

I didn't buy a chalice or a goblet or a snifter or a tulip glass. I poured it into my trusty Boulevard pint glass. And while I am fully aware that I may have missed out on some key character of the beer by totally disregarding the directions, I feel that I still got as much of a good sense of it as someone with my limited beer snobbitude would anyway.

The head bubbled up with a tiny delay, making me glad that I poured the glass only slightly over half full. The clean white bubbly head simmered down quickly, however, leaving just this thinner layer after a minute or so. By the time I finished, there was just a small, thin ring of white lacing at the bottom of the glass. The smell was clean and fruity, with an earthy undertone, and a heavy reality check on the alcohol content (9%). The appearance was a bright golden hue, cloudy and carbonated. The first sip was a knock out for me, not having had anything else to drink before hand. "Whoo, that's some strong beer!" came from the husband. (But he drinks Bud Light.) The first sweet, fruity, malty hit on the tongue gave way to some crunchy, pepper-ish sensations. This beer is not heavily carbonated, and after the first initial sips, the alcohol-burn seemed to go away. Or I stopped noticing. I liked it. A lot. But like other abbey tripel style beers, I can't drink too many. They make me sleepy. :) (1,440 characters)

Photo of katan
3.7/5  rDev -10.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

750 mil bottle, batch T8088 into a goblet.

A - Darker golden color, approach brown. Head formation is very aggressive and strongly retained. A pile of carbonation is evident. Little hazing.

S - Potent yeast aroma. Spicy. Strong phenolic notes as well. A light amount of fruity flavors hide behind the scenes.

T - Starts off with a fairly muted profile. There are some spicy and yeasty flavors. Mid-stream comes back with a growing phenolic flavor. Finishes with a sweet malt tone. Aftertaste is minimal.

M - Fizzy and biting - this is a highly carbonated beer. Once you get past the bubbling edge, the body of the beer itself is more thick and creamy.

D - My concerns with drinkability of this beer are more to do with tripels that this beer. Although I would say the carbonation fills me up more than perhaps an equivalent like kerberos or Bernardus.

Probably my second favorite of the Smokestack series. (913 characters)

Photo of champ103
3.71/5  rDev -10.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Pours a dark and cloudy orange color. A huge white and frothy head forms. It takes a minute for the foam to recede. Plenty of lace is left behind.
S: Banana and spicy clove aromas. Some yeast and funk.
T: Again, banana and clove dominate. A peppery spice and some yeast.
M/D: Medium body and carbonation. A creamy and smooth body. An easy beer to drink at 9% ABV. I am enjoying sipping on this.

A pretty good stab at a Triple. I can't say if it is one of my favorites of the style, but very enjoyable. Something I would recommend. (534 characters)

Long Strange Tripel from Boulevard Brewing Co.
92 out of 100 based on 449 ratings.