Trappist Achel 8° Blond - Brouwerij der St. Benedictusabdij de Achelse

Not Rated.
Trappist Achel 8° BlondTrappist Achel 8° Blond

Educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
91
outstanding

655 Ratings
THE BROS
86
very good

(view ratings)
Ratings: 655
Reviews: 393
rAvg: 4.06
pDev: 9.36%
Wants: 50
Gots: 64 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Brouwerij der St. Benedictusabdij de Achelse visit their website
Belgium

Style | ABV
Tripel |  8.00% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 03-06-2002

No notes at this time.
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 655 | Reviews: 393
Photo of Chico1985
3.99/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

330ml bottle, best by 6/13/15.

Appearance - Lots of foam on the pour. Very pale orange, lots of bubbles. Ridiculous foamy structure of a head, retains and leaves lace like a champ.

Smell - Sweet and yeasty, apples, fresh bread, light spices, light citrus+herbal tones and some alcohol. Simply good ol' tripel stuff going on here.

Taste - Taste mostly follows, though didn't quite live up to the scent. Sweet malts and Belgian yeast, good mix of light and dark fruits (raisins) and bread. Still slightly boozy for 8%.

Mouthfeel - Great body and carbonation level here. Good foam-level without being overbearing, smooth.

Overall - Definitely a solid no-frills tripel, can't quite hang with some of the best of its kind but a fine example, quite easy drinking as well.

Photo of LVituri
4.94/5  rDev +21.7%
look: 5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Essa cerveja é realmente surpreendente. Antes de prová-la eu havia lido sobre ela em vários lugares, os quais não davam tanto elogios a ela. Porém na minha primeira oportunidade já senti que não concordava com a opinião da maioria dos especialista. Na segunda vez, eu tive certeza. É com certeza uma das melhores cervejas trapistas da humanidade.

Photo of BeerFMAndy
3.71/5  rDev -8.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

11.2 oz bottle poured into a tulip.
8% ABV, 01/03/12

A - The beer gushes immediately, spewing from the bottle like a geyser, making it hard to retain quite a bit of the 11.2 oz bottle's beer. Massively carbonated, the tall head takes forever to drop but it finally plateaus to a lumpy ivory pile, all the while draping the tulip in heavy sheets of lace above the hazy blonde beer.

S - Heavy notes of sweet Belgian candi sugar suppress the subtle Belgian yeast characteristics of coriander, clay, and banana notes. Traces of alcohol make it in on the back end but this tripel has a tame aroma overall.

T - Pilsner malt and sweet candi sugar are arresting, putting the breaks on all other subtle nuances of the beer, namely it's Belgian yeast. Simple spice peeks through a drop of orange citrus and finishes back out with a trail of spiciness.

M - Heavy carbonation dances on the tongue, sparkling like effervescent champagne and carrying it's light spice nuances away with it's light body and faint alcohol heat on the back end.

O - More subtle and delicate than most Belgian tripels, Achel 8° exhibits some awesome traits of the style but without underlying complexity, only to show shallow yeast characteristics of coriander spice and clay with sugary sweetness taking over most of the profile. It's carbonation level aids in the drinkability of such a sweet beer but, it's also the cause of the beer exploding all over the place, and it's not the first time it's happened to me. Be cautious opening the bottle and don't expect a smack-in-the-face Belgian tripel from this one.

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

Poured into a chalice from a 330 ml bottle

A- Golden in color with a white head. Retention is okay, but the lacing is fantastic.

S- Banana, belgian yeast, booze. Very fragrant.

T- Yeast is a big one in here. Sweetness comes out as well, almost a pear flavor. Crisp but more mild than apple.

M- Medium body. Delicate and fizzy. Really nice to let sit in your mouth and evaluate all it has to offer.

O- Very tasty. The delicate feel of this makes it really enjoyable and really showcases its sweet flavors.

Photo of brureview
4.31/5  rDev +6.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

This beer is amazingly complex. Drink slowly to appreciate the subtleties in taste.
A snifter works well to fully appreciate the beer.

Poured a light golden color with a 1 f head in a snifter. Nice lacing.

Aroma: lemon, clove, apricot, which become more pronounced with warming.

Relatively moderate carbonation which works well for the style.

Taste- wonderful elements melded together: sweetness, clove, apricot, lemon, and an alcoholic finish which is stronger with warming.

The apricot and alcoholic finish blend well with warming. The body of the beer is light- offset by a complicated, well balanced taste profile.

Drink slowly and enjoy.

Photo of Auraan
4.29/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Poured a gorgeous cloudy light orange with a two finger white head. It looks fantastic, a good tripel in appearance. Scents of Belgian yeast, candi sugar, moscato wine, apple juice, slight honey, slight spice, caramel sweetness, and very faint hints of bubblegum. A very Trappist aroma, quite sweet, yeasty, fruity and deep with faint spice. Quite nice, excellent, enticing and complex. Flavor follows the aroma, quite sweet upfront, with hints of moscato wine, apricot, slight citrus peel bitterness and sour tang especially in the middle, candi sugar, some hints of Belgian yeast, and spices, some very faint alcohol, and some graininess on the finish. The finish is also quite dry. Very nice combination of flavors, on style for a tripel, which is certainly what this beer is. Mouthfeel is medium bodied with moderate carbonation and a drying finish. Quite on style for a tripel, yet again. Overall this is a very good tripel, one of the better ones I've had. I recommend getting a bottle and giving it a try. It's got an excellent and complex aroma, and a nice taste that melds with a very nice mouthfeel. It's not the best Trappist, but it is one of the better beers I've had.

Photo of BMMillsy
3.74/5  rDev -7.9%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours cloudy yellow with frothy white head that keeps on going. Aroma screams tripel, with a sweet honey nose, some spice, and lots of dry yeasty characteristics. Taste is banana and citrus, dry yeasty finish. This one goes down pretty easy and I enjoyed it. Could drink it in any occasion. While this was a nice beer, the premium price that comes from the "Trappist" label puts this out of reach as a regular brew. Solid beer though.

Photo of coreyfmcdonald
3.56/5  rDev -12.3%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.25

33cl bottle into a snifter

A: Pours a slightly hazy golden color with two fingers of fluffy white head. Great retention, amazing lacing.

S: Dried apricot and caramel sweetness upfront with a light spice in the background. Very well integrated.

T: The sweetness that I got in the aroma is no longer present. Tangy, a bit boozy, with a touch of caramel in the background. A bit of spice, but not much.

M: Medium bodied with high carbonation.

O: Great aroma - complex and very well integrated. The aromas go very well together. The flavor, though, is not great. Tangy, a bit too dry, without all the complexities of the aroma.

Photo of Blindpigbiz
4.33/5  rDev +6.7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Smell: subtle lemon notes with pears and herbs hit the nose within a few sniffs

Taste: the beer is the definition of bright and citrusy. With intense sweet lemons and limes alongside blood oranges, this beer is a citrus beast; cloves, subtle peppers, white oak, and effervescence also gives this beer a nice body, texture, and taste; even extremely subtle hints of very good vodka are in the background

Pairs well with: margarita pizza, traditional Caesar salad, and Alfredo pasta

Photo of bmwats
4.11/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Poured from a 33 cl bottle into a Westy chalice.

A: Hazy golden hue. Pours about a 2 finger, frothy, white head. Some effervescence clings to the sides of the glass. Craters slowly and unevenly leaving little peaks and valleys, and plenty of dry sticky residue behind as it does. Never fully dissipates. Thick, persistent lacing.

S: Hay, wheat, and lots o' yeast.

T: Yeast and hay with a touch of lemon zest and grapefruit.

M: Crisp and hearty. Yeasty aftertaste lingers throughout. A bit of a coppery finish.

D: Sip and love.

Atmosphere is really good. Hazy and golden, with a substantial head, and lots of thick lacing. Nose is yeasty and hearty. Grainy flavor, very yeasty, accentuated with a citrus tones. Overall, this is a great quaff.

Photo of RaphaelSC
4.38/5  rDev +7.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

A: Pours a golden yellow with a thick white head.

S: Fruity and sweet, with some cinnamon and spices.

T: Follows the smell with a fruity and spice flavour, has a good carbonation and hides the alcohol well.

M: The carbonation don't interfere in the aftertaste that is rich and complex with a mix of fruity and moderate bitterness.

O: Achel 8 is a Trappist Trippel of high class, very smooth and very drinkable.

Photo of bump8628
4.29/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Nearly clear gold with a creamy white head that remains dense throughout the session. Excellent balance between fruity esters, hop spice, and a slightly rustic but crisp malt. Faint banana, coriander, nutmeg, pear, black pepper, with a slightly chalky bitterness. Dry and airy in the mouth. Goes down way too easy. An excellent Trappist ale.

Photo of alex_hart
3.94/5  rDev -3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

appearance: a translucent orangey yellow with a half finger snow, white head that quickly dissipates to a thin layer. Extremely high carbonation visible.

Smell: Pretty simple. Belgian yeast, a bit of sweetness, and a slight wheatiness.

Taste: Much of the same. Pretty simple in flavor, but it is successful in its subtleties.

Mouthfeel: Great carbonation upon the tongue with little to no residue left in the mouth upon the swallow.

Overall: This is a good tripel, not great, but good. Not sure it is worth the $5 per 12oz price tag, but if you have the extra cash, go for it.

Photo of ZethOfTheNorth
3.5/5  rDev -13.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

12 oz bottle, $4.

This was matched against Chimay White in the first round of my all-triple bracket.

A: Opaque gold, a shade lighter than the Chimay. Extremely clumpy, cloudlike head and a swirling sediment cloud just below it. No visible carbonation, but it's a storm in there.

S: Sweet bread, honey, red bean paste, and an unappealing plastic flavor.

T: Initial prominent sweet bun taste, unpleasant to this reviewer. It spreads out and improves somewhat, but remains problematically sweet even through the multiple layers. A tick of booze at the end.

M: Nice and full, appropriate carbonation.

O: A disappointment for a Trappist tripel and the resounding loser to Chimay White, which I scored 4.23. The unappealing plasticky sweetness is the memorable feature, and that's a drag,

Photo of Parrotshake
2.77/5  rDev -31.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Aside from Westvleteren I thought I'd tried at least one beer from every Trappist brewery until I saw this in the store this evening and realised I've never had an Achel beer either. Off we go, then.

Pours a clear... golden colour. Cripes. For some reason I thought I'd bought the Brune. Huge marshmallowy head and lots of little bubbles, looks good at any rate. Smells nice too. Candi sugar, underripe peach, sweet spices, something a bit vinuous.

Taste is a bit of a shock at first. Boy this is sweet. Hard candy, cantaloupe, wet grain and entirely too little spice. A bit of bready pale malt presence but not enough to stop it from being super cloying. Not really noticing the alcohol but in this case it might have given it a bit of sharpness that it seems to want for. Nice finish of medicinal herbs takes your mind off the sweetness until the next sip, which is admirable.

Mouthfeel is a bit sluggish, could use a bit more carbonation, but not bad for the style. Overall a bit of a sweet mess. I wouldn't know what to do with another bottle of this. The kind of thing that that gives Tripels a bad name.

Photo of Douberd
3.8/5  rDev -6.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

330 ml brown bottle, at home. Poured into a tulip glass. I have this bottle for almost one year in my cellar. ABV 8%. Slighty hazy, deep orange colour. On top, two fingers of snow white, sopay head, very good retention. Leaves light lacing around the glass. Aroma was all malts when I opened the bottle, now that it sits in the glass, aroma is fruity, a bit yeasty, some notes of the alcohol too. Very nice flavour, very complex as well. Quite bitter, even from the beginning. Again, lots of fruity notes, a bit of malts. Aftertaste is sharply bitter. Alcohol very well hidden.Great. Full body, a biting carbonation, but only for a second.Quite dry on the palate. Overall, a very good belgian strong ale, the amount of bitterness surprised me on this one. Very refreshing and drinkable, in spite of the high ABV.

Photo of Maakun
4.27/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

In Orval glass. Nice light copper color with big white head.

Smell is yeasty, freshly baked cakes, hint of cloves, young banana,

Taste: quite light, yeasty, malts, some spices and then some touches of barely ripe fruits. Light hops and some grapefruit. Aftertase is slighty bitter with light sour notes.

Mouth is medium with really nice carbonation, very good.

Overall: quite complex and very well balanced. A lot of blondes tend to be very big on one note, this one balances a lot of the common blonce notes very well, so it's a real winner in the style for me.

Photo of CStrife187
4.22/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.25

Poured from a 33cl Bottle into a pint glass

A - Pours a cloudy golden amber with a thick, white, fluffy head. The head sticks around for a good while and leaves behind quite a bit of lacing.

S - Herbed banana bread. Delicious. Definite ester fruit smells with wheat and a hint of clove.

T - Sweet light fruit up front followed by a full, crusty bread flavor. Finishes with a hint of clove and hop bitterness. Very well balanced from front to back. Leaves behind a faint pleasantly bitter aftertaste. VERY smooth for 8% ABV.

M - Fairly heavily carbonated in the beginning, but smooths out over time. Feels fairly thick and bready. Matches the taste almost perfectly

O - I'm glad I didn't let this beer get too much age on it. It will be an interesting experiment to see how it tastes with a few months on it but I'm pretty sure what makes it good will start to fade. This was a great blonde and I'll definitely seek it out again.

Photo of DoubleJ
3.86/5  rDev -4.9%
look: 4.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 3.75

....wait, how have I avoided the Achel line so long? I'll bring in the Hardy boys for that mystery, but for tasting the beer, that's my case. From a 330 ml bottle, on to the beer:

This is a looker. A lovely fluffy head sits on top a golden color of liquid. Retention is very good; it caves at a few spots, giving it a rocky look. The lacing is a show, caking around the glass. Its nose is sweet in the form of toasted sugar and candied apricot, to a blandish note of soaked grain.

Almost there among the typical good Belgian tripel. The one aspect which takes it down a notch is the alcohol is a distraction with its echoing ethanol bite. Regarding the tasting notes, sugared apricots lead the way. A pleasant peppery accent works well with the profile and helps balance the beer out. Its body is medium-full and airy, with a pleasant sizzle of carbonation.

Achel Blond is a fine tripel. "Middle of the road" by Belgian standards, which is no laughing matter. But I wonder if it weren't brewed by monks, would it retain its prestige?

Photo of tilopud_rye
4.97/5  rDev +22.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

In this year 2013 I found this beer on the shelf labeled sept 2009. I was sick at the time so waited til I could properly taste to open. Immediately upon opening the bottle it made a slight hiss then filled the air with the scent of apples. The smell changed slightly in the pour openingup notes of caramel, toffee, honey, smells as if it's going to have a very big thick flavor. Taste starts with a light bread flavor then tastes like there's mixed fruit jam on th bread- apple, raisin, plum, peach with sweet toffee candy on the end of the taste.slight alcohol aftertaste with sugars and candy lingering. The toffee caramel and sugar influence is heightened actually when the sediment is poured. It's an amber orange-brown color with bubbles rising from the bottom towards a thick head that starts 3 fingers and lowers while sipping but never goes away. More toffee and sugar flavor in the head- more bread and fruit jam taste in the liquid. An excellent drink- though I hear some people prefer a young bottle o this. Somewhat warped that my first experience is a 3 yr bottle but I'll remember this beer and come back to this review to compare a younger bottle

Photo of kojevergas
2.75/5  rDev -32.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 4 | overall: 2.5

11.2 fl oz brown glass bottle with white standard pressure cap served into a Trappist Westvleteren goblet (large format) in me gaff in high altitude Castle Rock, Colorado. Reviewed live. Expectations are through the roof since it's trappist. 8% ABV confirmed.

Served straight from the fridge. Side-poured with standard vigor as no carbonation issues are anticipated.

Not paired with food.

Some liquid started to surge out immediately upon opening, but we only lost a minute amount of foam.

A: Pours a three finger head of beige colour, decent thickness, slight cream, and fantastic retention for the high ABV as well as for the style. Body colour is an extremely hazy pale orange colour. Fairly vibrant. Nontransparent. Translucent. No yeast particles are visible. No bubble show.

Sm: Champagne, HEAVY crystal malt, pale malts, clove, maybe light honey, and some assorted spices of such subtlety that I have trouble identifying them with me broken nose. A below average strength aroma.

T: Crystal malt, champagne/white sparkling wine notes, clove and other vague spices, pale malts, light specialty honey, and hints of yeast. Even a slight hint of very light funk. Incredibly light and refreshing for a tripel. Some notes of what tastes like what glass smells like - as though it's sat in the bottle too long; this off-flavour really hits the balance hard but I think my local bottle shop is mainly to blame. Metallic on the after-taste.

It's a tough call, but ultimately Achel should have more control over their distributors. These off flavours should not exist.

Mf: Delightfully light and tingly for a tripel; the mouthfeel is marvelous. Perfectly coarse and even a bit dry like a fine champagne or sparkling wine. Very light on the palate but with adequate presence. Ideal carbonation.

Dr: The off-flavours ruin it, but I can tell there's a good beer lurking beneath. I just wish Achel had better quality control. My local bottle shop is usually quite trustworthy, but this is a severe disappointment. I'll be revisiting this beer.

C-

---
05.09.14 truncated impressions:

Violently gushed upon opening, making a mess. Ugh.

A: Head is a bit thin, and lacks fullness, creaminess, and frothiness. Body has abundant yeast particles floating about, and the colour is nice.

Sm: Soapy, with some clean barley and muted crystal malts. Moderate in strength. A bit starchy and stale.

T: Has some nice elements, but ultimately it's a bit simple and unbalanced. Hints of honey, Belgian pale malts, barley.

Mf: Smooth and wet, with a carbonation edge.

Dr: Hides its ABV okay, which is high for a purported "blond bier." I remain unimpressed with this beer despite my trust of Achel. I'll need to have this fresh in Belgium to really review it properly.

Low C

Photo of blakelive784
2.65/5  rDev -34.7%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

11.2 fl oz brown glass bottle served in a goblet, reviewed live:

A - Pours a cloudy golden yellow color with a fizzy, champagne-esque head of three fingers. Retention is average.

S - Candi sugar, crystal malts light clove, yeast, and light lemon notes. Mild in strength.

T - I try to ignore the off flavors, but I think this bottle is a bit too old. Delicate pale malts and light yeast are obscured by a medicinal quality and a metallic aftertaste. The abv is entirely too noticeable. This probably is a good beer.... but based on this sampling I can't judge.

M - Crisp and light bodied. Dry. Would work well.

D - I'll give it another chance sometime.

Photo of FLima
3.96/5  rDev -2.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pale yellow golden color, a bit cloudy. Head couldn’t be more abundant, very thick with long retention, eternity would be more appropriate. Very interesting aspect, it left a rounded mountain of head in the middle of the glass and laces all over the walls.
Mild aroma of yeast and condiments, touches of bananas and citrus.
Flavorful and refreshing taste. Perfect sweetness level from its malts, with hints of cloves, citrus, tropical fruits, pepper and yeast. The 8% ABV is in harmony. Last pour was quite strong on the banana given the residual yeast.
Aftertaste is dry and mildly bitter with its residual taste. Light body with a good carbonation.
A Trappist with higher drinkability than average, refreshing and still packed with flavors and spices, to a moderate level, which is good for a change.

Photo of puboflyons
4.18/5  rDev +3%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

From the 330 ml. bottle stamped 29/08/13-29H-3:39. Sampled December 24, 2012.

The color is a murky golden yellow with a delicate and soft foamy white head that laces and laces.

The aroma is complex. It is both pungent and mellow with Belgian pale malts, Belgian sugars, yeast, clove, and a touch of citrus zing.

The body falls into the medium range and it is also creamy but it does not holds its consistency too long on my tongue.

The taste is similar to the nose but with a powerful pepper character and a moderate bitterness that lingers for a long while. It has the kind characteristics I like in a Trappist Ale but it has a bit more bite to it than others.

Photo of spoony
3.95/5  rDev -2.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

From an 11.2 oz bottle into a chalice. The bottle has a best by date of sometime in 2013 (I couldn't read the other digits).

A-The beer is bright and hay colored with two fingers of dense, off-white foam on top. The head never completely dissipates and leaves chunky lacing on the glass.

S-The first whiff produces a huge, sweet hit of mushy, overripe bananas backed up by a spicy, slightly medicinal alcoholic note of white pepper. The fruitiness mellows a bit with time, but never completely disappears. Sugar is well-represented, as is bready yeast.

T-The brew has a paler, more bitter and herbal taste than the smell would indicate. You still get some of that banana/clove fruitiness, but hops provide a slightly more grassy flavor that I did not really pick up in the smell. The yeast is dry and slightly chalky.

M-The carbonation is very fine and brew has a creamy feel that devolves to almost watery by the finish.

O-I found this to be an above-average beer, but not in the same league as my favorite tripels (Karmeliet, Fin du Monde, or Tank 7, for example). The flavors are solid, but not as well-integrated as the leading beers of this style and the mouthfeel was a little lacking. My criticisms, however, are all relative, and I would readily drink this beer again.

Trappist Achel 8° Blond from Brouwerij der St. Benedictusabdij de Achelse
91 out of 100 based on 655 ratings.