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Achel Trappist Extra - Brouwerij der St. Benedictusabdij de Achelse

Achel Trappist ExtraAchel Trappist Extra

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BA SCORE
95
world-class

357 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 357
Reviews: 201
rAvg: 4.29
pDev: 10.02%


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:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: dsa7783 on 01-22-2008)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 357 | Reviews: 201 | Show All Ratings:
Photo of cokes
cokes

Wisconsin

4/5  rDev -6.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Extremely dark tan-maroon. From any distance it appears purple brown. Genernally opague, and the pale beige head disappears with some haste.
The nose is all golden raisins, dates, carob, and cocoa.
Tastewise, it is more of the same. Up front is the dry, not-quite-chocolate-leaning yearnings of carob, augemented by dates, figs, plums, and raisins. Add unto this molasses and brown sugar. Next come yeast with its chalkboard and generalized breadiness. The fruitiness resides through the conclusion and there is little to speak of hop-wise.
Medium bodied with a thickish bodied partially alleived through CO2.
Pretty solid overall, even if It's not in the same class as things like St Bernie 12, des Rocs, Westy, or Rochefort. In it however, better than Chimay Blue

Serving type: bottle

12-01-2005 08:51:41 | More by cokes
Photo of therealmcclurg
therealmcclurg

California

4/5  rDev -6.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Very carbonated Belgian Strong Ale. Deep Brown color. Very, very sweet. This was the part that was a turnoff for me. I had high expectations, as I truly enjoy the other Trappist beers. This one is last on the list as far as I am concerned. Its a good beer, but its very sweet, and I can't imagine drinking very much of it at a time.

Serving type: bottle

07-07-2009 21:36:31 | More by therealmcclurg
Photo of rapidsequence
rapidsequence

Virginia

4/5  rDev -6.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

11.2 oz bottle. $6 from Peace St in Raleigh.

Appearance: First of all, it was a little bit of a gusher. My wife watched me open it, and laughed as I immediately shoved the bottle in my mouth, saying, "See how I feel, now swallow." Pours about as dark as red can be not be brown. Its clear, with a nice off white head, that barely fades at all. Curtains of lace.

Smell: Sweet dark malt and bready yeast. Dark sweet fruit. A little spicy.

Taste: As expected, sweet malt, bready yeast, spice, and dark fruit. Unexpectedly, a surprising amount of bitterness both from alcohol and hops. Really good. Long sweet bready, malt finish with a touch of sourness way on the back. More alcohol on the end as well.

Mouthfeel: Lasting tingly bubbles contribute nicely to the reasonably full mouthfeel. Leaves a little sticky sweetness behind.

Drinkability: All in all, a rich and pretty complex BSDA. The main detractor for me is the sourness on the finish. This gets old, especially as the beer warms, and starts to detract from an otherwise excellent beer. There are better ones for the price, but this is a must try.

Serving type: bottle

10-19-2009 01:22:29 | More by rapidsequence
Photo of Brabander
Brabander

Netherlands

4/5  rDev -6.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This is an overall good beer. I had this beer for months in my fridge but never had the time to open it. Tonight, on Christmas eve, this is the moment.

Poured in my Westvleteren glass the beer looks good. A nice darkbrown to darkred fluid and a firm head with big bubbles. It is a pity that the head disappears so fast.

Good soft smell of caramel and brown sugar and burned malts

The taste is a sweet one. Not complex but that is the case by most of the dark ales.

Merry Christmas!!

Serving type: bottle

12-24-2010 21:25:11 | More by Brabander
Photo of tdawgydog
tdawgydog

New York

4/5  rDev -6.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Received this bottle as a Christmas gift. Finally got around to cracking it open tonight.

A - Pours a nice dark brown, very little head but that's to be expected for a good dark ale.

S - Sweet. Refreshing. Opened up my sinuses. A little bit of caramel and a little bit of alcohol.

T - Well aged ale. A little bit of chocolate, super sweet taste goes down a little too easy.

D - Maybe a little under carbonated, a really smooth drink. One of the better Belgian darks that I've had.

M - Overall really fun. Will help me sleep well tonight ;-)

Serving type: bottle

05-06-2011 01:59:51 | More by tdawgydog
Photo of hardy008
hardy008

Minnesota

4/5  rDev -6.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Opaque dark brown with a 2 finger tan head which reduces to less than one finger and stays. Smells like green apples, brown sugar, dates, figs, and raisins. Can't wait to try it.

Sweet flavor with green apples, brown sugar, dates, figs, and raisins. There is some hop bitterness at the end for balance. Very nice flavor.

Medium to full bodied, low carbonation, somewhat creamy, and the alcohol is well hidden. A very solid beer, but the low carbonation does hurt this beer somewhat.

Serving type: bottle

12-18-2011 03:02:20 | More by hardy008
Photo of jrenihan
jrenihan

Ontario (Canada)

4/5  rDev -6.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Beer is brown with a moderately sized white head which dissipates quickly. Some lacing.

Dark fruit in the nose, plum and red grape. Vinous and sweet. Fairly typical BSDA. Good but not interesting.

Taste is fairly sweet, lots of plum, red grape and raisin. A bit of brown sugar. Malty. Vinous. Like the nose, it is a fairly typical BSDA flavour.

Medium bodied, low carbonation. Surprisingly thin.

Overall, a good beer, but not as good as I hoped for. Disappointing given the ratings. I found it to be a solid but typical BSDA, without any remarkable qualities.

Serving type: bottle

08-21-2012 23:24:36 | More by jrenihan
Photo of alex_hart
alex_hart

Oklahoma

3.99/5  rDev -7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance: A deep brown with a red hue that comes through when shown in the light. Strong carbonation present with a 1/4 finger tan head that dissipates quickly. No lacing.

Smell: Dark fruits, some belgian yeast, and then some more dark fruits. Pleasant to smell. Looking forward to the taste.

Taste: Much of the same with the dark fruits coming forward. Alcohol presence that is easy to detect but not overpowering. A slight belgian yeast comes through on the back.

Mouthfeel: Strong carbonation and slightly oily on the tongue. Pleasant for the style.

Overall: This is a good strong dark, but I'm glad it was a gift. I'm not sure I would pay the $15 price-tag myself.

Serving type: bottle

04-29-2013 22:59:45 | More by alex_hart
Photo of mithrascruor
mithrascruor

California

3.98/5  rDev -7.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

750 mL bottle poured into a chalice.

Appearance: Pours a cloudy caramel-brown color with a light tan head that dissipates quickly into a bubbly film.

Smell: Fairly [dessert-]bread-like aroma that's a bit sweet, with hints of roasted nuts, raisins, and some hints of alcohol.

Taste: Rich earthy malt flavor with some dark fruit (particularly raisins) and bitter sweetness. No real alcohol in the taste, but you can feel the warmth. Some slight astringent hints in the aftertaste.

Mouthfeel: Medium- to full-bodied and generally smooth, with minimal carbonation.

Drinkability: Can definitely sense the alcohol, though it isn't really present in the taste. Tasty and pretty easy to drink.

A bit different for this style, as it isn't so dark coloured, has a warmer taste/feel, and has more raisins than other fruits. But, still an enjoyable one, and I'm glad I finally managed to get a bottle of it!

Serving type: bottle

10-23-2010 01:09:46 | More by mithrascruor
Photo of elgiacomo
elgiacomo

Georgia

3.98/5  rDev -7.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

750ml capped bottle, best by April 2009. Served at cellar temp. Lets see how this holds up 2 years after the best by date and being on a store shelf almost the entire time.

Pours murky reddish-brown with a short-lived one finger tan head leaving a few spots of lacing and holding not much more than a ring.

Aroma is smooth dark fruits, raisins, plums, figs, Belgian candi sugar, bread and yeast, like jam-slathered toasted bread. Good strength.

Flavor is more dark fruits, raisins, red grapes, plums, figs, candi/brown sugar, rather sweet, very smooth, no alcohol noticed.

Mouthfeel is medium bodied, low carbonation. Damned good Abt/Quad even two years past its prime according to the brewers. Comes across as kinda a cross between a Rochefort 10 and a 10-year-old JW Lees Harvest Ale.

Serving type: bottle

03-07-2011 04:03:41 | More by elgiacomo
Photo of trappistlover
trappistlover

Arizona

3.98/5  rDev -7.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

750ml bottle from Bruery Provisions). Pours hazy mahogany with a khaki head. Aroma has candied sugar, dried pit fruit (apricot and date-maybe some fig). Taste is sweet with the fruit and candied sugar even stronger than the nose. Thin to medium bodied with a slick texture. Smooth, sweet finish. This beer borders on being cloyingly sweet, but just before it falls off the cliff, it comes back with some light wine notes and some acidity. A very good beer.

Serving type: bottle

05-02-2011 04:33:11 | More by trappistlover
Photo of nickfl
nickfl

Florida

3.95/5  rDev -7.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A - Dark reddish brown with decent clarity, but some yeasty chunks. The slightly tan-white head is large and aggressive out of the bottle and it leaves thick lace on the glass as it quickly settles down to a thin film.

S - Rasiny, with brown sugar and prunes. A little bit rosey/ fruity with alcohol and a slight note of herbal hops in the background.

T - Alcohol and dark fruit. Spicy, peppery notes and a hoppy, alcoholic finish with a lingering bittersweet chocolate flavor.

M - Thick and palate coating despite high carbonation, but it finishes nice and dry.

D - Not bad drinkability for such a strong, flavorful beer. The alcohol note is a bit harsh and some of the flavor is a bit muddy/ undefined, but the finish shows great promise. It seems like this beer could benefit a great deal from ageing (the one I had was presumeably only a couple of months old).

Serving type: bottle

07-25-2007 04:09:04 | More by nickfl
Photo of crossovert
crossovert

Illinois

3.95/5  rDev -7.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 4

750ml green capped bottle.

Pours into my tulip with a fizzy, billowing slightly off-white head. The beer is a hazy brown/amber/reddish brown.

The yeast is very powerful n the scent with hints of lemon. There is also some dark fruit scents like red grape, raisin, and prune. And also some hints of dark malts and caramel.

The taste is actually very similar to the smell. It is more astringent than most Belgian strong darks. There are a bit more spices in the flavor and I am definitely picking up some cinnamon-like character. It has just a bit of tartness which is welcome for this style. After the sediment is poured the tartness vanishes and loads of caramel and yeast goodness come to the forefront. It is one damn complex brew.

The mouthfeel is a bit too carbonated, that is the only real flaw of this beer.

Overall it is a great Trappist beer, I expected better but this is pretty good.

Serving type: bottle

02-26-2010 00:20:17 | More by crossovert
Photo of ikantspel
ikantspel

California

3.95/5  rDev -7.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

served slightly chilled into a duvel tulip

pours a heavy dark brown with a lot of carbonation. heavy carbonated head but not as bad as their 8 bruin. little bit of sticky lacing

the only thing i can get from the smell is a toasted malty yeast. other than that its anyones guess

carbonated mouthfeel. earthy taste and the alcohol slightly creeps in. not bad for a 9.5.

great beer. only BSDA better imo would be TROIS PISTOLES but then again i haven't had them all

Serving type: bottle

10-18-2011 04:29:24 | More by ikantspel
Photo of jbone78
jbone78

Florida

3.93/5  rDev -8.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Had a couple of these, just now got around to reviewing.
A- Poured in my St. Bernardus goblet. A reddish color with a nice carbonated head. Lacing not bad.
S- sugar, bold fruits like raisins.
T- This is the surprising part. there are the flavors of dark fruits, but less belgian sugar flavors and more of a sourness that I do not expect. Could bee the yeast?
M -Traditional Trappist, well carbonated.
D -Not Bad, I just prefer other trappist ales.

-Bye

Serving type: bottle

08-28-2009 01:49:45 | More by jbone78
Photo of stcules
stcules

Italy

3.85/5  rDev -10.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Dark mahogany color, with some floating bodies. Light beige head, quite creamy and compact.
Toasted malts, caramel, ripe red fruit, cheeries.
At the taste candy sugar, yeast, quite smooth. Bread crust, marzipan.
Quite variegated, sometimes the bread crus - yeast prevail, and just a seconf after, red fruit and marzipan.
Even dry fruits, and a light liquorice. Good. Maybe hints of blueberry. Carrob?
In the aftertaste again candy sugar, fruit. Some liquorice in the end.
Good beer.

Serving type: bottle

11-08-2007 21:41:15 | More by stcules
Photo of tmoneyba
tmoneyba

Ohio

3.85/5  rDev -10.3%
look: 5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Bottle on 12/29/2005.

Poured hHazy brown color with a huge frothy light brown head that was lasting and produced excellent lacing. Good complex sweet fruity aroma. Medium body with a sticky texture. Heavy sweet bitter flavor with a long bittersweet finish with a small alcohol tone.

Very good brew.

Serving type: bottle

11-15-2008 22:24:19 | More by tmoneyba
Photo of radioscooter
radioscooter

Pennsylvania

3.85/5  rDev -10.3%
look: 5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Still making my way through the 'real' Trappists with fervor.

This is the first time I tried Achel.

Thankfully not as frothy and carbonated as I expected.

Appearance is excellent - apple amber with a fantastic, 2" foam that could hold up a set of stripper's ta-tas. Beautiful drapey, pimitive lacing.

None of this dissipating vanishing head - i still have some foam at the end of the glass.

Subdued aroma.

I'm not a Blonde fan, but this one is tasty. Hints of coriander, strong alcoholic vapory fruit flavors. Golden taste, if that makes sense.

No aftertaste here of any impact, making this an all-night drinker. Would be heaven paired with some Baked Brie and apples.

Serving type: bottle

11-24-2010 23:54:28 | More by radioscooter
Photo of UCLABrewN84
UCLABrewN84

California

3.85/5  rDev -10.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Bottle pour at the bottle share held at Chloe's inside Golden Road Brewing in Los Angeles, CA.

Pours a murky honey brown with a foamy khaki head that settles to a film on top of the beer. Small dots of lace form around the glass on the drink down. Tiny chunks of sediment are seen floating around in the beer after the pour. Smell is of malt, dark fruit, caramel, toffee, and alcohol aromas. Taste is much the same with fruit, caramel, and slight cardboard flavors on the finish. There is a mild amount of spice bitterness on the palate with each sip. This beer has a lower level of carbonation with a slightly crisp mouthfeel. Overall, this is a pretty good beer with a great smell but there is a slight amount of oxidation coming through in the taste.

Serving type: bottle

08-23-2013 17:06:49 | More by UCLABrewN84
Photo of bluejacket74
bluejacket74

Ohio

3.83/5  rDev -10.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

750 ml bottle, best before November 2009. Served in a chalice, the beer pours a dark chestnut brown color with an inch off-white head. Head retention is good, lacing is average. This bottle was definitely a gusher, it didn't take long for the carbonation/foam to come out of the bottle after opening. It smells like dark fruit (raisins, plums), brown sugar, oranges and peppery spice. Taste is similar to the aroma, but there's some toffee, yeast and bitter herbal/grassy hops noticable. However, there's also a slight metallic taste in the finish that I don't care for. Mouthfeel/body is medium, with high (but soft) carbonation which works well in this brew and makes it feel nice and creamy. Drinkability is good, it's not hard to drink at all. Overall I think it's a decent enough beer, but for the price I don't think I'll pick this one up again anytime soon.

Serving type: bottle

12-23-2008 23:18:56 | More by bluejacket74
Photo of DrewShal9
DrewShal9

Massachusetts

3.78/5  rDev -11.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A: hazy, golden with a white head that remains laced on the sides as the beer is drunk or stays if you don't haha
S: very fragrant, fruity, floral
T: sweet initially with tropical fruits of pineapple and guava maybe some mango that turns slightly bitter and drying at the end
M: moderately carbonated with a milky body. Dries like a champagne
O: not bad but not great either. Will return to see if it's different on a fresh palate as I had a few other brews before tasting this one.

Serving type: bottle

08-03-2011 02:48:25 | More by DrewShal9
Photo of chefscott79
chefscott79

California

3.73/5  rDev -13.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Well I was super excited to buy this because I liked their blond so much.
I was not disappointed but not super stoked on it

Appearance:dark brown with a nice head...not as carbonated as some Trappist ales that I have had recently

smell:great malt smell and as it warmed more notes of dark stone fruits

taste:it seemed a bit mellow and I did not get allot of fruit notes as much as I did on the aroma...mostly just dark malt flavors(while good) it did not wow me...also did not have a bunch of estery quality's which I was expecting

mouth feel:creamy and easy to drink

drinkablity: super easy to drink a bit too easy maybe...considering the alcohol content

Serving type: bottle

10-18-2007 21:30:09 | More by chefscott79
Photo of TurdFurgison
TurdFurgison

Ohio

3.68/5  rDev -14.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Had this from a 750mL bottle. Tasted sweet but highly alcoholic, not nearly as good as I'd hoped for a high-end Trappist.

I'd been waiting to sample this for a while, but was disappointed once I tried it. Kind of run-of-the-mill for a Belgian Strong Ale. Just OK. the flavor was good but not outstanding or anything.

I guess I can't recommend it strongly. Go to other Trappist beers first.

Serving type: bottle

12-04-2005 07:46:58 | More by TurdFurgison
Photo of LilBeerDoctor
LilBeerDoctor

New York

3.68/5  rDev -14.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Reviewed on 9/12/08. Bottle. Pours a dark brown with lots of floating yeast particles and a small light tan head. Aroma of sweet fruit, sugar, and slcohol. Flavor is quite fruity (apple, pear, and lots of cherries!), with some Belgian yeast, and slight alcohol presence. Yum! The cherry presence gets a little medicinal by the end, but this is a tasty, quite fruity, sweet beer. An interesting quad.
8/4/7/4/15 (3.8/5)

Serving type: bottle

12-26-2008 17:20:55 | More by LilBeerDoctor
Photo of Chrysostom
Chrysostom

Ohio

3.68/5  rDev -14.2%
look: 5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

As always, I review live, not from notes, puzzling out the libation brewed in houses of salvation. As always, I review to style (ala BJCP), modified by personal taste (contra BJCP), not solely to personal taste, which would be unfair to many great examples of styles that I don't personally favour.

My second beer from Achel (my first was a Bruin 8º), and my first had from a 750mL, or when I was even halfway sober.

(Note, that since my words below to most people won't seem to match up with my numbers on first sight, that I can not stand Rochefort. I'd drink Budweiser first. This has some of those similar spiced flavours, but to a lesser degree, so I can drink this, even if I wouldn't particularly want to.)

Without further ado, a review.

Presentation: 750mL crown-capped bottle, $17.99. Served around 45º and warming as I write. They should at least put a cork on it for $18, nearly twice the price of most other Trappists. The crown cap is somewhat difficult to remove, requiring attack with a beer key from several directions. Although I hear it's kind of rare, so I should be thankful for getting half a case. Poured in to a Chimay chalice/goblet.

A: Clear brown coming out of the bottle, somewhat hazy reddish-brown in the glass with red highlights. Poured gently, as with all Trappists, to avoid getting too many lees in the glass: on said gentle pour, one finger of head is produced, which recedes at a moderate rate (over about two to three minutes) to a cap on the face of the beer, leaving a sheet of lace down the side of the glass.

S: Spice that is very similar to Rochefort (it's nearly impossible to describe except by experience), alcohol, and bready malt. There's some yeast in there too. Doesn't sound incredibly complex, but that spice - whatever it's from, spicing or yeast - complexifies it nicely. None of the characteristic Belgian funk, but the Belgian spice, as mentioned, characteristic of Rochefort. No alcohol. No dark fruit.

T: Rochefort spice comes through loud and clear, and first. Some moderate sweetness, a little funk, and some sweet dark-bread flavours follow. Orange peel, coriander, cinnamon, and nutmeg are components of the spice. Spicing is not overwhelming like Rochefort - Rochefort has so much spice the beer is disgusting and undrinkable. Not my preferred kind of Quad/BSDA, and a demerit for the style (I rate Rochefort similarly lowly, and Chimay and St Bernardus Abbot 12 highly). It gets noticeably better and less spicy (in the bad meaning of "spiciness" as is characteristic of Satan's concoctions such as Rochefort) as it warms, bringing the beer from a 2.75 or 3 to a 3.75. Not extraordinarily complex, especially for a Trappist - the (illegitimate) spicing predominates.

M: Rich and creamy, fading to a somewhat nutty astringency on the finish. Highlight.

D: Moderate middle of "low".

O: Drop the spicing and clone Chimay or St Bernardus Abbot 12, or even Achel 8º Bruin. Not a bad beer, but not great, and disappointing for the price, rarity, expectation, and Trappist moniker.

To style (16E): 90/100 (spicing is allowed, according to BJCP)
To taste: 67/100 (spicing is not allowed, according to my palate).

Serving type: bottle

03-28-2013 11:15:04 | More by Chrysostom
Achel Trappist Extra from Brouwerij der St. Benedictusabdij de Achelse
95 out of 100 based on 357 ratings.