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

Trappist Achel 8° BlondTrappist Achel 8° Blond

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553 Ratings
very good

(view ratings)
Ratings: 553
Reviews: 375
rAvg: 4.05
pDev: 9.63%

Brewed by:
Brouwerij der St. Benedictusabdij de Achelse visit their website

Style | ABV
Tripel |  8.00% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 03-06-2002)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 553 | Reviews: 375 | Show All Ratings:
Photo of MattSweatshirt


4.1/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

From the 33cl bottle 05/7/13 into a snifter.

It poured a big pillowy white head with lots of bubbles. Produces a dark golden color. Left a sheet of lacing down the glass.

I smell citrus and yeast but it is also reminiscent of a hefeweizen with some banana and cloves here and there.

This is treat to drink. It is chalky, crisp, and dry with some yeast and earthiness going on. I should have gone slower with the tasting as there is a lot going on, but it is such an easy drink to enjoy.

A must try if you dig Belgian blondes/tripels.

Serving type: bottle

11-17-2011 18:04:08 | More by MattSweatshirt
Photo of Jimmys


4.3/5  rDev +6.2%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

11.2 oz bottle into long stemmed tulip

A: magnificent bustling head on top of a hazed golden body. the retention on this thing is excellent. looks like bits of clouds sitting on top. great lacing to boot.

S: chalky and earthy. there is a significant hop presence on the nose of this tripel. lemony and black pepper.

T: floral approach here. both with citrus and fruity yeast esters. there is a touch of vanilla in there too. finish moves towards fruit again, with a distinctive flair of orange peel.

M: vibrant bubbly, almost effervescent, carbonation on a medium/full body.

D: may be a full-ish body, but this brew is so easy drinking it doesnt matter. i could have one of these at any time of the day. belgian tripels have a great way of being full bodied without the heat.

Serving type: bottle

11-08-2011 03:01:14 | More by Jimmys
Photo of Squelch

United Kingdom (England)

4.68/5  rDev +15.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Appearance: Gorgeous straw blonde, two finger head, Nice lacing, Effervescence. Beautiful

Smell: Complex aromas of banana, fruits, lemon, bread

Taste: Wow. Excellent complexity. The best tripel I've had. Lemon, banana, Slight hop bitterness. A+++

Mouthfeel: Alcohol well hidden. medium bodied. Nice.

Overall: Pleasantly surprised. The best I've ever had. Will be buying again.

Serving type: bottle

10-30-2011 15:07:45 | More by Squelch
Photo of Mako82


3.65/5  rDev -9.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A - First thing I noticed was the large head the beer poured. Head was white in color and very foamy. Lasted for a long time! Clear and golden in color, slight white hue in the light.
S - Picked up smells of floral, yeast, malt, and slight hint of clove
T - Most prominent taste I picked up was of pale malts, followed a subtle yeasty taste, then followed by a sweet taste that transitioned into a floral taste (if you can follow that)
M - Medium body, crisp taste, that made me want to keep grabbing another sip
O - Thought it was a decent beer, glad I tried it. Not my best tasting, which may have effected my review

Serving type: bottle

10-13-2011 00:59:48 | More by Mako82


4.83/5  rDev +19.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A - Light golden color. Moderately cloudy. Tall, bubbly, white head that dissolves at a medium rate.

S - Floral notes that I can't put my finger on. Smells like Spring in a glass. Sorry that I can't be more specific, but I don't have a very strong nose :-/ Great smell though. I can say that with certainty.

T - Mmm, delicious! Starts out with some solid maltiness, which I definitely look for in blondes. Just enough sweetness to help bring out the rich flavor, but not enough to cripple it at all. The dry bitterness lingers and gives you a magnificent aftertaste of hops/flowers. I'd say it's more floral than fruity. I feel like I'm eating out the Easter Bunny.

M - Light on the tongue. If I didn't wish to savor this beer so much, it'd definitely be one that could be easily pounded. If I had unlimited money, I'd use this for beer pong back home.

O - Might be my favorite blonde I've had to date. Light and refreshing, yet complex. PERFECT after a long, stressful day, which I've had. It seems to me like this beer accomplishes what Chouffe, Delirium, and many others try, but fail, to do. A must try!

P.S. Their Brune is just as awesome.

Serving type: bottle

09-27-2011 18:37:41 | More by TRICKYD1CK
Photo of Mar02x


4.22/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Yellow with a faint of orange, not so hazy, head good head but that disappears quite soon till a fluffy cream remains.

S - Fresh citrus, inviting

T - Light sour, salt, warming alcohol, complex, easy to drink and not sweet. It is like drinking a light triple, o it is a triple. I thought I was drinking a blond.

M - Creamy carbonation explosion, very nice

O - A very good blond, I mean triple. Really I didn't know until I saw it at BA.

Serving type: bottle

09-04-2011 19:29:01 | More by Mar02x
Photo of RollTide05


4.13/5  rDev +2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This was a great beer that I drank out of my Westmalle chalice. It didn't seem quite as complex as the other trappists that I have had, however it was still absolutely fantastic. I mean, we are talking about Belgian Trappist beers...

It poured with a huge head and had a better retention than other similar beers but it was lacking that "richness" that I love about some of the bigger Belgians. It was still a "rich" beer overall but it seemed to be more crisp and refreshing. Not a bad thing.

I would say to serve this beer at a bit below cellar temp. Not too warm because it is very carbonated. A fantastic beer, I will scoop up a few anytime I run across them.

Serving type: bottle

08-26-2011 16:35:18 | More by RollTide05
Photo of nickd717


4.18/5  rDev +3.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Bottle at La Trappe in SF, reviewed on 5/24/2009.

Hazy golden-yellow color with a lasting white head.

Aroma of light fruits and sweet pale malt.

Flavor of pale malt, spices, yeast, sour apple and citrus, and floral hops.

Dry finish, crisp palate.

Serving type: bottle

08-25-2011 22:15:45 | More by nickd717
Photo of BarryMFBurton


4.25/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Here we go: another Trappist. This one must not be as popular, because I’ve only seen it at one liquor store in the state. Maybe I’m just not looking hard enough, but it sure seems that Achel is a little more rare than its counterparts Rochefort and Chimay. No matter the rarity – I’ve got a bottle now. Let’s see how this “Blond Bier” stacks up:

Brewed over a year and a half before the date of this tasting (“12/4/09” on the back of the bottle).

A: “Blond” is right: this beer is a goldenrod in color, with a haze that stops about 50% of light from getting through. The head is a very prominent, white, creamy foam that totally envelops the glass. After a few short moments, the suds are completely gone, save for a half-finger of cream that stays for the duration. There’s hardly any lacing, but the color and head retention make up for it. It’s attractive, especially since they’re going for the blond style.

S: Succulent fruits come to mind with every whiff – they’re darker than I was expecting, though. I get plum, raspberry, blackcurrant, cranberry, and rich red grapes; it’s a delightful contrast to the light color of the body. These sugars come off as nothing but organic, showing a fruity tartness that only nature can bring. Clovey spices are there, too, but less accentuated; still, they fit nicely into the phenolic character that acts as the undertone to this beer. Overall, it’s just a bright, wonderful nose that never fails to make you smile.

T: What an incredible mix of light and dark flavors! I’m getting raisin and brown sugar in the same breath as orange peel, apple purée, and wild berries. It’s a remarkable flavor profile, as far as sweets go. The bitterness doesn’t have as much too say, though, showcasing just a slight tartness from some earthy hops. However, there is an astringency to the yeasts, as they offer a puckering version of phenols for the aftertaste. As a result, the finish is largely dry, with some lingering tastes of dark fruitiness. I must say, this is probably the most drinkable Trappist I’ve had yet.

M: Significantly warming at first, which is nice from an 8%. It’s also sticky on the way down, which works to compliment the already heavy dark sugars. There’s a nice foamy presence from this one, making the drink smooth and creamy.

O: Looking for an all-day Trappist? Here’s my pick. I love how non-threatening this beer is. I mean, you can’t drink a Rochefort without feeling a bit of shell-shock from the flavors, in the end. Achel Blond is a testament to the drinkability and sheer pleasure that we can get from well-balanced flavor. This is one of those beers I would pick to accompany a meal at many different occasions, or to serve to a group of people who aren’t necessarily beer connoisseurs. It’s just one of those crowd-pleasing brews.

Serving type: bottle

08-11-2011 18:59:25 | More by BarryMFBurton
Photo of rinhaak


4.13/5  rDev +2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A vertical taste test comparing a 2011 Achel Blond with a 2003. Both were tasted in identical goblets. The review is based on the 2011, though the tasting notes for the older vintage are below.

Pours a light golden blond color with an enormous head. The head was nearly out of control, and sometimes reached as large as three fingers.

The nose is like a perfect summer morning: bright and sunny. Light cloves, fresh hops, flowers, and hibiscus aromas are all present.

In the mouth, I taste a fresh yeasty breadiness, as well as cloves and malts. With a lot of carbonation, this drinks easily and seems much lighter than 8%. However, there is an boozy finish to it that begins to reveal the high alcohol.

Overall, a fantastic beer and easily one of my favorites in the style. My only complaint - besides the overwhelming head - is that the alcohol content is really too high for what seems to be such a light, pleasant, summer blond ale.

2003 Achel 8° Blonde (3.15/C+)

A: 3 - Pours a rich, deep caramel color with no head and a lot of sediment.

N: 4 - Very rich and strong aromas: lots of banana and oak-aged bourbon. There is also a pungent alcohol aroma that burns the back of your nose similar to whiskey.

T: 3 - Strong flavors of tootsie rolls and artificial chocolate. Very rich, there are also banana flavors and, surprisingly, not much of a boozy taste at all.

MF: 2.5 - Mild to no carbonation, and with no head on this beer, what little carbonation was present at the beginning of the pour disappeared within three minutes.

O: 3 - I have finally put to rest my long standing question as to whether Blond ales age well. Though this beer certainly wasn't undrinkable and was even moderately enjoyable, due to the extreme radical change in character, I would argue that this beer is best enjoyed fresh and shouldn't be aged.

Serving type: bottle

07-14-2011 14:53:00 | More by rinhaak
Photo of DaveHS


4.43/5  rDev +9.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A-Pours golden blonde with a 4 inch off white head. Reduces from bottom to top, very slowly, creatiing a fat cap of foam that hovered about an inch above the lip of the glass before reducing. Took a while, maybe 5 minutes. Sticky, spidery lacing.

S-Light grassy hops are the first thing that comes through, which instantly reminds me of De Dolle Arabier. Not what I expected in a Belgian tripel. Following the hops are sweet aromas of pale malt, dried herbs, and a touch of black pepper.

T/M-Very different from any other trappist tripel I've tried. It's drier, boozier. The sweetness is there, but it's muted by the dry, boozy mouthfeel and herbal characteristics. I'm having some difficulty placing what it is. Dried thyme maybe? Stirs some hard to place sense memory. Full bodied with dry, prickly carbonation.

O-An excellent contrast to the other more lush, rich tripels. Would love to try one with a few years on it to see if it mellows.

Serving type: bottle

07-13-2011 01:27:09 | More by DaveHS
Photo of Snamnoum

District of Columbia

4.03/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance - hazy beautiful gold with hues of peach. Massive 3 and 1/2 fingers of billowing white head with fantastic retention, lacing, and a big pancake of foam in the center.

Smell - rich and floral yeast aroma accented by some light hops and pale malt sweetness. Playful phenols and subtle spice.

Taste - much more powerful than the smell lets on. Full, round, and fruity. Very boozy with a malt profile like pound cake. A touch of honey and some mild bitterness.

Mouthfeel - this is a deceptive beer, its appearance and smell give the impression that it will be light and floral but in reality it is a big beer with a sweet malty backbone. The beer is on the heavier side when it comes to tripels with tons of unfermented sugars and aggressive carbonation that gives it a somewhat abrasive feel but not unpleasantly so.

Overall - I love this beer and on my ongoing journey to try all the trappist ales this is another impressive and exciting offering. Its rich and fruity. A damn good brew!

Serving type: bottle

05-27-2011 01:09:57 | More by Snamnoum
Photo of SFLpunk


4.13/5  rDev +2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

33cl brown glass pry-top bottle. Back label stamped 13GI 11:44. Purchased at Knightly Spirits OBT, Orlando, FL.

Pours bright orange gold with a bit of haze and thick bone-white head. Nose has classic BPA notes with some fruitiness and dough from the yeast and a little citrus from the hops. Palate is crisp and dry with some nice bittering hops. Hay and orange pulp come to mind for flavors. My favorite of the Achel line but still prefer La Trappe Triple or Westmalle Triple.

Serving type: bottle

05-23-2011 23:30:02 | More by SFLpunk
Photo of kaseydad


4.25/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Duvel glass pour and I am met with foam plus a little beer at the bottom. HUGE foamy head that looks like a french vanilla float. Had to try three times to get all the beer into the glass at once. Underneath all that foam is a cloudy amber colored ale. The aroma is grassy, lemon smell with some apple and other fruits. Some minor malt as well. Great tasting with some spicy pepper like qualities up front followed by a yeast-grainy feel and some very light fruit (lemon peel) at the end of the sip. Slightly sour. Big carbonation and dries very quickly in the mouth. Overall I feel this is a very nice Tripel and obviously as authentic as it can get. Not as fruity or sweet as other Tripels which is a nice change. Not sure I could do more than a small bottle though as it does numb the tastebuds after a while.

Serving type: bottle

05-15-2011 20:21:12 | More by kaseydad
Photo of UCLABrewN84


3.98/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours a crystal clear pale yellow color with a HUGE 4 inch stark white head. The head overflowed when I poured the beer and there are super aggressive carbonation bubbles in this one. The head settles down into a mountainous pillow of foam on the top of the beer. Random spotting of lacing on the glass as the head settles too. Smells of Belgian yeast, spices, mild fruit, and citrus zest. Taste is very yeast forward with spices, lemongrass/citrus, and some malt on the finish. Slightly bitter citrus zest flavors on the palate after each sip. Feel is extremely carbonated to the point where is detracts from the overall experience in my opinion. Overall, this is a good tripel from this Trappist brewery and I am glad I got a chance to try it.

Serving type: bottle

05-11-2011 03:03:39 | More by UCLABrewN84
Photo of JoeAmerican77


4.18/5  rDev +3.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Most impressive peak of white head I've ever seen, four fingers, but it keeps growing. This all sits atop a beautiful yellow grain nectar shooting furious bubbles skyward through the haze...

Smells of buttery, bready yeast, and citrus

Bitter hops in the head foam, sweet, citrus and, strawberry on the tongue with a little aftertaste of ripe apricot. Alcohol burn is present as well.

The carbonation is ferocious, and the brew yields a medium body, a tad chewy with straying capabilities

Overall quite the treat, one of the most intense blonds I've ever tasted, and probably one of the tastiest as well. Wish it were cheaper, but at the same time, I wish they all were.

Serving type: bottle

05-10-2011 22:41:24 | More by JoeAmerican77
Photo of Meerkey


4.28/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A: thick, foamy white head. lots of bubbles. bright, rich copper.

S: fruit and citrus. spices. grain.

T: Strong spices. Creamy, lots of fruit, not as much citrus as in the smell. Delicious.

M: Creamy and carbonated. Smooth and clean. Lingering taste.

O: Not my favorite tripel, but a very good one. Definitely recommend.

Serving type: bottle

05-10-2011 22:25:52 | More by Meerkey
Photo of tbeckett

Ontario (Canada)

4.38/5  rDev +8.1%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Bottle at Gollem Proeflokaal in Amsterdam. From notes.

A - Pours with a mountainous head of white. Hazy blonde colour. Insanely fluffy white head leaves rediculous and probably best lacing I've ever seen all the way around the glass.

S - Hops, yeast, and a slight sugary note. Different from the average tripel due to the hop character, whose oils mix well with the yeast and candi sugar I assume they use.

T - Not too hoppy but obvious it's there. Lovely fruity blonde ale with huge flavours. Lot's of honey and floral notes with the sweetness and sugar notes. Yeasty notes, a little bit of spice, and more hops.

M - Mild carbonation. Medium body. Hoppy, but not bitter finish. Slightly dry.

O/D - Lovely beer. Probably underrated blonde ale. No alcohol noticable, flavourful, refreshing, and hoppy. Alot of characteristics I like and they've presented it flawlessly.

Serving type: bottle

05-10-2011 10:52:44 | More by tbeckett
Photo of TheJollyHop


3.55/5  rDev -12.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Poured at 60-65F into a goblet.

Very large white, fluffy head is produced with a very gentle pour; clear, copper/yellow body. Head lasts a couple of minutes while leaving behind copious amounts of sticky foam on the glass.

Sweet and fragrant herbal aroma emanates; yeasty phenols. candi sugar, lemon citrus/lemongrass, buttered brioche, and a hint of pepper.

Taste is lemon citrus upfront, Belgian biscuits in the mid palate, cloves, well integrated alcohol, slightly astringent (tea bag) finish.

The mouth feel is highly carbonated, and relatively light bodied. Lively bubbles and slightly tongue coating. The excessive carbonation amplifies the bitterness more than it should.

Balance is slanted towards an astringent, unpleasant bitterness. Flavors are somewhat muted and thus slightly lackluster; some additional sweetness or a less astringent finish would help this Tripel incarnation considerably.

Serving type: bottle

05-02-2011 02:18:56 | More by TheJollyHop
Photo of trappistlover


3.68/5  rDev -9.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

(11.2oz bottle). Pours clear golden color with massive white head. Active carbonation and nice lacing. Aroma is grass, light grape or melon, some hops. Taste is sweet malt with some hop bitterness. Light bodied with creamy texture. Dry, slightly bitter finish. Good beer.

Serving type: bottle

04-30-2011 17:17:51 | More by trappistlover
Photo of crnipeter


4.05/5  rDev 0%
look: 5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Clear, golden body is highly effervescent, literally boiling from the streams of upraising bubbles, topped by ever-lasting rocky white head that gets dimply and clumpy as it slowly retreats, leaving thick patches of lace hanging on the walls. The head never fades off completely and sets to a thick, firm cover instead. Aroma is prominent orange-like esters and clove-like, mildly spicy phenols, light pils-malt sweetness and a tinge of alcohol. The medium-light bodied beer is airy on the palate although the high alcohol content adds creamy sensation. Flavor is an interplay of spicy, peppery phenols with esters of orange. High carbonation, attenuation and bitterness that seems more phenol rather than hop-derived lend dry finish with lingering yeasty, spicy aftertaste. A nearly flawless triple without any alcohol warmth, as it should be. (330 ml, BB date reads 20. May 2011 indicating full maturity at the time of the review, into Achel chalice)

Serving type: bottle

04-17-2011 23:16:34 | More by crnipeter
Photo of bark


3.73/5  rDev -7.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

The beer builds a gigantic white compact head when poured into the glass. The colour is gold with a tint of orange; the liquid is clear. When the firm head slowly sinks, it leaves massive amounts of lacing.

The sweet smell got some yeasty notes, but the fruity esters dominate: Green and ripe bananas, apples, pears. Some alcohol and a light bitterness. As clean as it should be.

The taste is sweet and clean with a dry fruity flavour. Some mild yeast, quite a lot of bananas and pineapples. Clean and elegant flavours with some warming alcohol. The aftertaste is quite mild with hints of tea and sandal wood.

The carbonation is strong with lots of sharp short-lasting bubbles. The liquid is a bit dry.

A very clean tripel. Perhaps a bit too reserved for my taste.

Serving type: bottle

04-07-2011 18:06:13 | More by bark
Photo of medic25


4.03/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Served in a Duvel tulip; clean golden color with a huge, cloud-like head lingered throughout the whole beer. Aroma is a little spicy, ,but primarily slightly hoppy. Taste is a nice combination of the sweet Belgian spiciness I'd expect, along with a little more bitterness than I'm used to in a tripel. The flavor lingers a little after finishing a swig; overall a very tasty tripel.

Serving type: bottle

04-02-2011 02:12:20 | More by medic25
Photo of biboergosum

Alberta (Canada)

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

330ml bottle. I would imagine that a single reference to the 'Trappist' designation on the label would suffice, no? Oh? Ok.

This beer pours a slightly hazy, medium golden amber colour, with a teeming, overflowing, and consequently counter-wiping amount of puffy, thinly foamy, and yet rocky off-white head, which settles all slow and steady, leaving a mess of scattered cloud detritus lace around the glass in the process.

It smells of mild spicy, almost funky yeast, bready, and sort of crackery pale malt, stewed apples, black and white pepper, some citrus pith bitterness, and a hint of alcohol warming. The taste is sweet bready pale malt, some bittersweet orchard fruitiness - lemon and overripe apples, mostly - earthy, tacky yeast, and floral, perfumed hops.

The carbonation seems quite petered out after its introductory outburst, manifesting now in but a lame frothiness, the body a sort of wan medium weight, and decently smooth by the same measure. It finishes off-dry, and clean, with the admittedly well-balanced fruity malt tinged by an ever so slight booziness.

An agreeable, and equitably recommendable Tripel, the style's SOP alcohol edge honed, and reduced to a mere echo. Quite drinkable for that, or at least until the flipside of the sword makes its mark. Trappist brewers do excel at subtly, and this one sneakily possesses it in spades.

Serving type: bottle

03-27-2011 00:40:50 | More by biboergosum
Photo of atlason

New York

4.45/5  rDev +9.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Out of control head with extravagant light foam turning into suggestive and sensual lacing. Pours a pale amber with slight haze.

Very fresh smell with hints of fresh hay and very weak citrus.

Creamy and doughy belgian malt character. More on malty side compared to Orval. Orange peel.

Aftertaste of bitter hops. Slightly cloying.

Serving type: bottle

03-26-2011 02:54:38 | More by atlason
Trappist Achel 8° Blond from Brouwerij der St. Benedictusabdij de Achelse
90 out of 100 based on 553 ratings.