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Achel Trappist Extra - Brouwerij der St. Benedictusabdij de Achelse

Not Rated.
Achel Trappist ExtraAchel Trappist Extra

Educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
94
outstanding

211 Reviews
THE BROS
-
no score

(Send Samples)
Reviews: 211
Hads: 441
rAvg: 4.26
pDev: 6.34%
Wants: 120
Gots: 53 | FT: 1
Brewed by:
Brouwerij der St. Benedictusabdij de Achelse visit their website
Belgium

Style | ABV
Belgian Strong Dark Ale |  9.50% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: dsa7783 on 01-22-2008

No notes at this time.
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
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Reviews: 211 | Hads: 441
Photo of cdrogers
5/5  rDev +17.4%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Poured from 75cl bottle to Rochefort chalice.

A: Strong dark tea and raisin color. Head was a nice off white, about 1/4 inch; seemed very thin. I generally hand wash all glasses because the dishwasher leaves a residue that seems to mess with the head. May have been too cold when poured. Second glass had a much better head.

S: Subtle hints of sweet caramel and molasses. Nothing harsh on the nose though. Balanced.

T: Has a "dark" flavor, maybe a coffee. Very smooth and has a nice tingle in the mouth and on the tongue. Get the alcohol at the end, but not without some sweetness. Maybe some brown sugar for the sweetness and that is where the "dark" comes in as well. Quite complex, but very good.

M: Just gets everything involved. In amazing experience. As mentioned above there is a nice tingle on the tongue. Nothing overpowering, it all works well together.

D: I could drink one of these every night, but at $18.99 a pop and somewhat rare in the southern Illinois region, it would be a bit impossible. It's an exceptional trappist yet again. I am somewhat biased because anything trappist I absolutely love, the monks know how to brew. Would recommend this to anyone at least once, but because of the price only. If it were cheaper and offered in a smaller size that would be even better. (1,299 characters)

Photo of founddrama
5/5  rDev +17.4%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

A sublime quad. Everything you'd expect, maybe more. Creamy finish and effervescent throughout. Paragon of a Trappist quadruple.

#MensJournal100Best2014 (153 characters)

Photo of brdc
5/5  rDev +17.4%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Large capped bottle poured into a Chimay goblet.

Beautiful color, somewhere between orange, brown and red, ligthly turbid, with a creamy, dense tan head with great retention and Brussels lacing.
Great aroma, dark fruits, sweet malts, caramel, some yeastiness and breadiness.
Full bodied and creamy, with a deep flavor that starts malty and sweetish, mostly caramel, evolving into fruitiness, with layers of bread and yeast, and finishing quite dry to make it a very well balanced beer for the style.
An amazing sipper, a must for any lover of the style. This is as good as it gets. (585 characters)

Photo of putnam
4.97/5  rDev +16.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

There was an angry, brutal surge of crispy brown souffle from the neck of the bottle which defied all attempts to shunt its energy into several waiting glasses. Finally, with the liquid sub-shoulder level, we were able to stop the loss.
There we stood, beholding the large globes of caramel gas in front of us. Little chunks of tan yeast danced in the puddle of brown at the base of the bowl.
Talk about vanilla. Pure, Madagascar pods of steamy, fermenting vanilla decorate notes of fabulously ripe cherries and plums. This may be the nearest a beer has come to emulating top-notch Rioja or Graves Bordeaux on the nose.
On the palate it is low-acid, ripe, creamy and strong with flavors of toffee, brandied cherries, tangerine sherbet-flavored nougat, white pepper - tannins are subdued, but assertive enough to ensure a perfectly dry finish.
This is a monument of a beer. Do not doubt it's power, nor its ethereal, sexy exotic melt-in-your-mouth deliciousness.

Serve with country pate au poivre and crusty bread if you know what's good for you. (1,052 characters)

Photo of ccrida
4.97/5  rDev +16.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

750 ml bottle, newer American labeled Extra, poured into my Koningshoeven chalice, the quad is a hazy pale brown amber, with a firm khaki head, that leaves heavy foam and lace. Very nice glow to it in the light, and while the head is not as rocky as others, the vigorous carbonation ensures it stays to the end.

Smell is absolutely heavenly - sweet and succulent tropical fruits, grapes, caramel and brown sugar.

Taste is equally sublime. So many delicious layers of sweetness, but so soft and rounded that they gently unfold rather then bludgeon the senses as is often the case with lesser made big beers. Spicy and drying finish that couldn't possibly linger long enough.

Mouthfeel, again, is perfect, so light, creamy and luscious.

Drinkability is exceptional. My favorite trappist, this is one of the best beers in the world. We're very lucky St. Benedictus is finally making beer again! (898 characters)

Photo of 1fastz28
4.95/5  rDev +16.2%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

sweet god, amazing, nothing i've ever drank has come close to this, poors a deep amber hue with a nice thick frothy head which remains for a while, the smells are confusing lots of diffrent smells come out. sweet and yeasty.

taste is exceptional, at 9.5 the alcohol is present but not overpowering by any means... feels full in the mouth, not try or too sweet drinkablity is easy, even with its higher than average alcohol, i'm VERY fortunate to get it for 5 dollars for a 23.4 ounces

if you get the chance to buy this, be sure to get it. my local place had this on the discontiued rack for 5 bucks (604 characters)

Photo of LVituri
4.94/5  rDev +16%
look: 5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Uma boa surpresa foi encontrá-la no Brasil. Até então, para mim, se tratava de um rótulo lenda. Mas que cerveja equilibrada. Fascinante. Eu já era fã da Achel, porém, após esse rótulo, me tornei ainda mais admirador deste mosteiro. Uma cerveja que vale a pena. (269 characters)

Photo of polloenfuego
4.92/5  rDev +15.5%
look: 5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 5

With out a doubt one of the finest beers I have ever had. This beer looks great and smells sweet and rich of dark fruits. The taste is much the same sweet with dark fruits and dark sugars. The feel is smooth and full. All in all a hell of a beer. Get your hands on it if you can. (285 characters)

Photo of rye726
4.88/5  rDev +14.6%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Thank to Daisy at 't Brugs Beertje for another great evening full of some of the most amazing beers in the world.

Beautifull looking beer. A deep, rich and murky mahogany color. Perfect thick tan head with nice retention and lacing.

Aromas of dark fruits, sweet buttery malts and Belgian peppers over some herbal spice. Complexity grows as it warms.

Delicous malt structure surrounded by dried pitted fruit. Very earthy with more sweet yet complex sugars through the finish. This elixir defines my idea of nutty, bready malts.

Thick and chewy yet delicate and crisp. Silky smooth as it passes over the palate.

I could drink this everyday and never get tired of it. Perfectly blanced and hugely complex. Stands up to any beer in the world. I wish I could give it all fives, but the aroma isn't quite there. (813 characters)

Photo of AleDrinkToThat
4.88/5  rDev +14.6%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Appearance: Three fingers of bubbly, audible beige head in a Karmeliet tulip glass, and the ale was just brown enough not to be considered burgundy, and slightly opaque.

Smell: Hints of ripe pitted fruit and spice, with sweet malt and a bright hoppiness. Those Trappists win again in the complexity arena.

Taste: Sweet dark malt hits the taste buds immediately, then opens up to reveal the fruit and spice, and finishes with the bright hops and leaves a fruity, malty aftertaste.

Mouthfeel: Extremely smooth, with a sweet coating of the mouth. The alcohol is barely discernable, but does a great job of leaving the mouth and throat just a little warmer.

Drinkability: God has truly blessed the Trappists. I don't know how they do it, but each Trappist ale that I've had (five of six Belgians) has been some of the most complex, sweet nectar that has ever been poured into a bottle. The alcohol is deceptively muted in this Achel, but that %ABV measurement up there is for real, so bask in the sweetness with slow, blissful sips. (1,032 characters)

Photo of phirleh
4.8/5  rDev +12.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

I bought this last April in New York City and it's the second last of the trappists I've yet to try (Rochefort is the last, it's in my cellar). I wasn't expecting too much, they are the most recent trappist brewery (1998) although they had brewed previous to WWI. I've heard average reviews of the Brune and Blonde, but I was completely blown away by this beer, I'm glad I chose the Extra. When the cap was popped it foamed like crazy, the smell was wine-like and fruity. The taste was similar, sweet with slight sugar, and a tangyness that reminded me of Duchesse de Bourgogne. The colour was a dark brown with a strong billowy head. Carbonation was typical of trappists, although not as prickly as some. I'll definitely grab this again, one of the top beers I've had. (769 characters)

Photo of garbercury
4.8/5  rDev +12.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

I love this beer. Not really all that impressed with their Brune and Blonde, but this beer is terrific!

A--Deep red-Mahogany with a generous head that gives it a very impressive appearance.

S--Veinus almost like a sweet wine, fruity.

T--Okay, the important part. As a fanatical fan of Quads, this is a terrific version. fruits like cherry and fig are huge in this beer but do not come off as cloying or overdone. Subtle enough that they stand out, but does not overbear. Alcohol is really masked in this one.

M--good.

D--Depends on your feelings of quads. Me, I am not scared to drink liberally but it could kill your pocketbook. This is a world class beer and worth of its "trappist" label.

Great beer in the same class, I dare say, as St Bernardus, Rochefort, and Westvleteren. Good stuff. Heard a terrible rumor this will no longer be imported to the US, say it aint so... (882 characters)

Photo of 4thelvofbeer
4.8/5  rDev +12.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Awesome. Period. If you think regular Achel is good, the extra is great! I took a tour of the brewery at Achel and the 750ml format bottles (the format for the Achel Extra and the Blond Extra...which is also great) are bottled right there at the brewery by the monks. The other Achel beers (the 330s) are bottled off-site at at a larger bottler. The extras are really good!!

A: Dark brown, big creamy head
S/T: Grains and malt, awesome balanced smooth taste, not overpowered by the souped up alcohol content.
M: Again, smooth, really nice
O: One of my favorite Belgians!!! (573 characters)

Photo of Lukie
4.76/5  rDev +11.7%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

A rich dark brown, with a bubbly thick, mocha coloured, icecream head, which lingers an inch thick. It clings to the glass like a curvy woman to a tight dress.

A soft coffee, vanilla, almost warm mocha aroma, with hints of wild dark fruits. Very inviting on a cold night.

Ripe dark fruits, plum, raisin and slight sourness gives way to a velvety chocolate. Rich dark, smooth and inviting. It's like drink a fruit and nut chocolate, without horrible nuts :P
Rich, smooth, but nowhere near overpowering.

For a beer that is 9.5%, it's just magical. So easy to drink, but yeah an abundance of rich flavours that are not too heavy on the palate like some beers can be. I actually think this is what Trois Pistoles is trying to mimmick, but this does it a million times better (and given Trois Pistoles is bloody awesome!).

Fantastic beer. (837 characters)

Photo of Fugazme
4.75/5  rDev +11.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

From notes:

Dark brown... slight head, but I like the looks... hints of ruby. Quite nice to look at this beer!

Aroma is yeasty and bready... quite fruity. Medicinal qualities with some good alcohol notes.

Mouthfeel is great. Creamy and smooth. Wonderful.

Sweet on the tongue with peach, fig, raisin, rum, caramel, bourbon, berry, yeast... wow. Marvelous. (366 characters)

Photo of Thrasher
4.72/5  rDev +10.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

sampled 6/03/05. Just a glorious beer. This was a hit around the table, even with those who may not have had a Belgian beer before. It poured a glowing, batter-y, leather brown and put forth a mild head and a small ring of foam. The beer emitted a rich aroma of caramel, apples, tilled earth, fruit, figs, honey and marzipan? What the..? (** Just saw V's review below and he mentioned almonds, so I guess I am not completely off with the marzipan.) The flavor is sweet and quick, a melange of the above elements with mild black pepper, perfume, and tree bark? (Damned if I know what kind of tree.) There's some candy sugar and a medium dose of alcohol, contributing to what evolves into a maple syrup character. The beer is delicate, yet forceful, with gummy hops and some strong seed flavors. The mouthfeel is good but not particularly thick; there's some foaminess in the mouth and it could be smoother on the whole. The drinkability maintains an average pace, which is actually quite brisk for such a strong beer. Highly recommended -- you should get some. (1,059 characters)

Photo of duracell
4.72/5  rDev +10.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 750mL bottle into a Goblet.

Pours a dark brown color with a nice off-white creamy head which disappears rather quickly. It shows a very nice malt character with strong dark fruits aroma, yeast and caramel besides. Delicious caramel flavors, in addition to nutty and spicy notes. I also pick out some herbs. A bite of alcohol balances the relative sweetness of the candy sugar. The mouthfeel is just excellent, with a full body. In my opinion, the low carbonation suits perfectly this brew. Overall, this Trappist beer is just outstanding! It shows very complex aroma, an excellent drinkability and perfectly balanced flavors. (640 characters)

Photo of Mar02x
4.7/5  rDev +10.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A - A brown ale hanging in my glass with carbonation bubbles racing to the surface. A fluffy beige cream floats on top of a bit hazy fluid.

S - This smell like Westmalle yeast, a bit like Westvleteren 12 too, nutty and raisins.

T - A perfect brown ale taste, creamy, nutty, candy sugar sweet, raisins and figs.

M - A soft to medium carbonation, just a touch of bitterness and just a touch of alcohol.

O - A very good, what? A dark ale? It is more a quadruple, almost, if not, the same as Westvleteren 12! (508 characters)

Photo of GRG1313
4.7/5  rDev +10.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Pours brown/black-can't see through with a thick, firm tan head that lasts and with full complete lacing.

Light nose of Ripe peaches, apricots with hints of pineapple.

Mouthfeel is wonderful bold, creamy and thick with flavors of malt, banana, cream and cooked fruit. Nice malt character in a very well balanced, high quality Trappist Extra.

This beer is wonderfully made and very inviting. It may well be perfectly balanced. Finish of banana, cooked stone fruit and an end finish of butter. Really nice, all around brew.

I just served this beer to a friend who has consumed beer for about 40 years. While he is not a beer "afficionado" he just concluded this may be the best beer he's ever had. He may not be wrong! (723 characters)

Photo of acehart1
4.7/5  rDev +10.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

2008 vintage, sampled on Jan. 22, 2011

Got damn. This beer is fantastic. The scent is other-wordly and the carbonation is what makes this beer special. I really have no basis to judge this beer since it has been a long time since I sampled the fresh example. Either way, this stuff is fantastic. I really enjoyed the aftertaste. This beer did not disappoint. (359 characters)

Photo of amiles
4.7/5  rDev +10.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

What an amazing beer! Found this at a local shop here in Chicago, West Lakeview Liquors. Never seen this in Chicago other than 'now'. Labeled best by... 07/08. 6th of the 7 Trappist breweries I can now check off my list.

Poured a dark ruby red with a massive head that was made to impress, into a Delirium Tremens glass. Waited and waited, enjoying the aroma's. The head slow retained itself into a tan froathy head that was like no other. The aroma literally made my eyes slightly roll back in my head each time I took a wiff. Lots going on with this beer... Quite impressive. This kept my interest all the way through, as most get boring towards the end. A bit different than the other Trappists. I was sad to see this one go. Savor this one... Exceptional beer! Sip it and pour small glasses... If you find it... Buy it! (827 characters)

Photo of krdowney
4.68/5  rDev +9.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Forgive me, my love, for I have found another.

Reminiscent of Mick Jagger’s “brown sugar,” this thick, velvety beauty leaves me yearning to drink a second time. It pours through my palate slowly, with an initial bitterness at the tip of the tongue, followed by a rich fullness that overwhelms the senses, leaving me in a state of ecstasy. Its deep amber color excites, promising an experience paralleled by no mere lager. Its foamy head rests delicately over the beer’s deep substance, clinging to the sides of the glass like the remnants of one’s last rapturous trist. This beer delivers its alcohol with a subtle grace, hidden amongst its creamy goodness, one ends an afternoon of drinking Achelse Kluis in a veritable Dionysian state of wonder, surprised yet intensely pleased. This, truly, is a beer of the gods. Savor it before its too late. (855 characters)

Photo of jdoolin
4.68/5  rDev +9.9%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

Trivia: Achel Extra was first brewed as a Christmas seasonal beer, but because of its popularity, it is now brewed year round.

Presentation: 750mL bottle, poured into a proper Achel chalice.

Appearance: Absolutely gorgeous. A beautful, dark ruby brown. Produces an outstanding, off white, creamy head that hangs around for the duration and produces heavy lacing. Stunning.

Aroma: Has a very good, assertive aroma. Malt aromas, caramel, hints of chocolate are surrounded by a wonderfully pleasant fruity aroma. Only hints of alcohol.

Taste and Mouthfeel: Oh so creamy and smooth. Sweet at first, but finishes drier than I thought it would. The caramel malt flavors and sweetness hits up front, followed by the lovely fruitiness of this beer. A little bit of spiciness and alcohol, slightly warming, come in before the dry, yet flavorful finish, which is like a little echo of the malt and fruitiness I tasted before. Amazing.

Notes: Very well done. The monks at Achel should be proud of this beer, and proud that they take part in the brewing themselves (to a degree, anyway). This ale was a tremendous surprise for me. One that I will come back to again and again. Not easy to find, but well worth the effort. (1,224 characters)

Photo of yapi
4.67/5  rDev +9.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I must say one of those hidden gems in the trappist beer section... wonderful full flavors, so much better than the regular bruin, it's not even funny!

I have a lot of experience with drinking aged westy's - easily amongst the best beers in the world - and this one reminded me a lot of the best westy bottles I've ever had. I had the same amazingly balanced caramel and honey notes, next to the well known dark fruit/candy sugar notes of course, and well, then I'm sold.

A killer beer, and even though it's already high up in the ranks, still underrated. (559 characters)

Photo of roadhouse
4.67/5  rDev +9.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

750 ml bottle into a Piraat tulip

Pours starts off bad, a big gusher and I couldn't get the cap off to pour it in the glass, so a slight mess. Once it's in the glass though it's a deep brown. When held up to a light lots of chunky sediment is noticeable and it's more of a hazy red color. The head is about one inch and it retains well as a skim. Lots of lacing is left on the glass as well.

Aroma is slightly sweet like brown sugar, a pretty heavy dark fruit character of raisins, prunes, and figs. A bit of yeasty, breadiness and a very light spicy character.

Taste is sweet up front again like brown sugar. A hint of molasses. The fruit character is very strong again, mirroring the aroma of figs, prunes, and raisins. Again some soft biscuit and bread tones before a slight spiciness comes in and rounds out the flavor profile. Lingering sweetness, fruit, and spice in the finish.

Mouthfeel is medium-light, very smooth and creamy with the slightly high carbonation. Very drinkable.

I had been putting this one off for a long time, I constantly saw it for $20 at one place and refused to pay that much and another place had it for $15. I still didn't wanna go for $15 but I did last night, and damn am I glad I did. This is one of the best trappist beers I've had, and I have had almost all of them now. Highly recommend this one, I'm not sure it's as rare as the sparse amount of reviews seem to suggest, but pick this one up if you can. (1,447 characters)

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Achel Trappist Extra from Brouwerij der St. Benedictusabdij de Achelse
94 out of 100 based on 211 ratings.