Achel Trappist Extra - Brouwerij der St. Benedictusabdij de Achelse

Not Rated.
Achel Trappist ExtraAchel Trappist Extra

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BA SCORE
95
world-class

418 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 418
Reviews: 208
rAvg: 4.29
pDev: 9.79%
Wants: 104
Gots: 42 | FT: 0
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: 418 | Reviews: 208 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of cfalovo97
2/5  rDev -53.4%

Photo of sinstaineddemon
2.15/5  rDev -49.9%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 1.5

btw, this was a blind taste test

geez, i hope i reviewing the right beer, my bottle has the same label as the smaller stuff, but the specs match with this one. the 9.5% ABV and such. this IS the Extra, so i think it is, anyway...

A - a dark black that reveals a hazy brown when held up to the light, with 1 1/2 finger of tan rocky head, after a few swirls, a banana aroma is released

S - a hoppy nutty aroma, sweet like darker fruits, maybe rasins

T - these dark fruit characteristics are maintained in the flavor as well, as is the nuttiness, not to fond of this, too bitter for me, and the sweetness is not balanced well and too dark

M - eh, im not impressed, too dar sweet and bitter, not well balanced

D - low, i couldnt finish it very easily, wasnt too fond of it. quality brew, with decent flavor, but the balance didnt agree with me

Photo of brystmar
2.83/5  rDev -34%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Sat on this bottle for about a year. Best before 3/16/2012.

Dirty brown body, thin tan head & lace with big bubbles. Ugly, to be honest.

Aroma is super sweet & bready, which is offsetting to my senses. Aged hops and Belgian candi sugar join the above in the flavor. Figs, plums, other dark fruits. Again, way too sweet for my liking.

Pretty sure my distaste for this brew isn't due to the extra time on the bottle -- minimally attributable, at most. Lacks the depth, spice, and overall complexity of its Trappist siblings.

Photo of Madubz
3/5  rDev -30.1%

Photo of DELLmark14
3/5  rDev -30.1%

Photo of SFLpunk
3.1/5  rDev -27.7%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 2 | overall: 3

Purchased at Bruisin' Ales, Asheville, NC. $16.50. 750mL green glass capped champagne bottle. Side label says Best Before End 16 M(arch) 12. Opened at 57 degrees (my cellar temp).

Pours a crackly thin medium reddish brown with lighting fast tan head. Nose immediately smells like skunky Euro hops (green glass!) but it blows off a little. Very perfumed smelling with some candied fruit notes and a lot of wild flowers/lily notes. Some pale caramel aromas sneak through.

Palate is very light and surprisingly crisp. Very low carbonation, almost none really. Some thin caramel notes, a sugary candy-like sweetness, something like orchids, and there's definitely some pilsner malt in there. Hops are flowery and not bitter at all.

Notes: Not impressed with my first Achel experience. I was expecting this to be a lot bigger in body and mouthfeel, but found it to be rather thin and watery/flabby. Like the second runnings of something like Cuvee van de Keizer Blauw. It's sweet without the usual malt-body to justify the residual sugar level and the lack of carbonation is concerning. Tastes rather like sweet tea. Bad bottle?

Photo of Boz12
3.25/5  rDev -24.2%

Photo of scottwurst
3.25/5  rDev -24.2%

Photo of nick76
3.28/5  rDev -23.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

The aroma has cola, alcohol, caramel malt, flowers, and a little yeast. The appearance is light brown with a large foamy head. The flavor is sweet and astringent with all the elements from the aroma plus wood. The palate is really thin. As a quad this is not all that it should be. It's thin and unusual. This is one of those beer that's sweet and full bodied but not great.

Photo of BrewMaster
3.33/5  rDev -22.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.5

Appearance: Poured from the capped bottle to a 25 oz crystal sniffer glass. The color is a clear muted red with brownish hues. The carbonation is even and smooth throughout the glass. The off-white head is rich and sticky and about 2 cm thick. Very nice retention and when it does thin out just a tiny bit of swirling revives the head to full force. Nice creaminess and lacing.

Smell: Vinous, malty, toffee, burnt sugar, crushed figs and raisins, tart fruit flesh, and a bit of floral and toasty malt. The nose on this is potent.

Taste: The flavor on this beer is quite turbulent. The sweetness dominates this beer in an uncomfortable way. It's insanely sweet to the point of cloying. Caramel and more crushed fruits. Figs and truffles with some fresh grass and a phenolic character all show up. But in this bare-knuckles ass kicking contest, the syrupy sweetness is the one with the lead pipe. All of the other flavors bow down to the syrupy sweetness before they are slaughtered. It's a gruesome affair. There is no hop contribution or bitterness in the flavor. The malt flavors are light and toasty but nearly non-existant. Alcohol wamrth finishes the beer. The flavor is good but very unbalanced.

Mouthfeel: Very creamy and thick, medium to full bodied with a sandy and syrupy ending.

Drinkability: Good but too damn sweet. I can't drink this anymore. Everything is overpowered by that fruity sweetness. It ends up being an over the top, overdone, big bottle of sweetness without much enjoyable depth.

Photo of Brunite
3.4/5  rDev -20.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Appearance: A rich dark mahogany color. The largest head I have ever had with a beer. My tulip glass filled and I had enough to fill a second.

Smell: Most some syrupy dark cherry smell. Pretty one dimensional for me.

Taste: Same thing. Dark sour cherry. Maybe some unsweetened dark fruits. Not mind blowing.

Mothfeel: Medium body...carbonation stays in check.

Drinkability: Good but not great. Not my favorite Trappist.

Photo of RenoZymurgist
3.45/5  rDev -19.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured an opaque dark brown color with a tan head that had small bubbles. The head was fairly sticky.
The aroma began with a dry spicy character that had a touch of an alcoholic warmth in the finish.
The Flavor began with a sweet malt flavor that dominated the profile blending in with the spiciness but taking over in the finish. This is one of the sweeter examples of the style that i have tried yet it is still drinkable. The finish is clean and the spicyness lingers a bit leaving a fruity taste on the tongue.
Average drinkabiliy due to the sweetness this is nonetheless an excellent Trappist ale.

Photo of kojevergas
3.48/5  rDev -18.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.5

75cl green glass (ugh..) bottle with standard unbranded pry-off pressure cap acquired at Argonaut Liquor in Denver, CO and served into an Orval goblet in me parents' gaff in high altitude Castle Rock, Colorado. Reviewed live. Expectations are sky high given this is a trappist beer. Imported by the Shelton Bastards. Best before: December 15th 2012. Oops. 9.5% ABV confirmed. No style is specified on the label, but it is referred to as an ale and the ABV is high so I'm reviewing it as a Belgian strong dark ale.

Served chilled after a period of rest following its removal from the fridge and allowed to warm over the course of consumption. Side-poured with standard vigor as no carbonation issues are anticipated.

A: No bubble show forms as it's poured.

Pours a half finger wide head of khaki-white colour. Lightly creamy and thick. Head retention is pretty subpar - it lasts 30 seconds at best. Little lacing coats the sides of the glass as the head recedes, and even less stays in place.

Body colour is a vibrant dark amber brown. Translucent but nontransparent. No floating yeast particles/sediment is visible; it's pretty clean for a Belgian strong dark ale.

Overall, it's an appealing appearance for the style and I'm looking forward to trying it. It's gorgeous when backlit and viewed from the underside of the goblet. I do wish the head was better.

Sm: Lovely residual sugars blend marvelously with heavy bready malt character. Caramel and breadcrust complement each other nicely. Cream. A kiss of some sort of dark fruit - fig, I think. Belgian biscuit malts. As it warms, I pick up some prune on the backend, accompanied by a hearty fruity sweetness.

I don't detect any Belgian yeast alcohol, or hop character. It's a good aroma for a Belgian strong dark ale and I'm looking forward to trying the beer. The fruity notes are a highlight. Mild to moderate in strength.

T: Creamy up front, giving way to a bready malt foundation with some biscuit malts and brown malts in there too. The dark fruit is nice, with notes of caramel-covered fruit, figs, dates, prunes, plum, and raisins - though the raisin is a bit too heavy for my tastes. Unfortunately, I do notice some faint cardboard/stale malt character which brings the beer down. I get some biscuity yeast character as well - in addition to identifiable Belgian characteristics I lack the capacity to adequately describe; I know it's a Belgian beer just from the flavours, but I can't quite identify why - maybe it's spice? Clove/nutmeg? I also pick up some toffee. Hints of cola, maybe some sassafras. Light traces of green apple. Maybe some light candi sugar.

It's certainly more on the sweet side, but I'd call it rather balanced - albeit simple. The complexity and subtlety of a great Belgian strong dark ale isn't present here, and I wouldn't call it nuanced or intricate. The build - while very cohesive - is a bit shy of gestalt. Above average depth of flavour. Average duration and intensity of flavour.

No alcohol or hop character comes through.

In fairness, as it warms, it does open up a bit. The fruit definitely feels more integrated.

Mf: Sticky and chewy. Has a nice unexpected creaminess. A bit too coarse and dry for the flavour profile, which prevents the texture from feeling custom-tailored to the taste. Still, the mouthfeel suits the flavour profile in a general sense. Well-carbonated. Has an okay presence on the palate, but it's a bit chalky. Nice body. It's a bit too thick. It's certainly a filling beer, but isn't quite the meal in glass you might expect given the style. It doesn't have too much weight on the palate.

Not oily, gushed, hot, boozy, astringent, or harsh.

Overall, the texture needs work. This is the most problematic aspect of the beer.

Dr: A pretty drinkable Belgian strong dark ale, but it isn't up to par with my expectations for a Trappist offering. I'm confident Achel can do better. I was ready to love this, but the execution is a bit lacking. While it can't compete with classics like Chimay Blue, this is a Belgian strong dark ale well worth trying and I'm happy to support the Trappist cats over at Achel. I'm also reticent to be too critical seeing as I accidentally nabbed a bottle that's a year past its best before date. I'll plan on revisiting this when I make it out to Achel's public cafe.

High B-

Photo of jmryan8
3.5/5  rDev -18.4%

Photo of Mikeluzzjr
3.5/5  rDev -18.4%

Photo of ericwilson54
3.5/5  rDev -18.4%

Photo of Dave7500kl
3.5/5  rDev -18.4%

Photo of bigred89
3.5/5  rDev -18.4%

Photo of Stoutsman
3.5/5  rDev -18.4%

Photo of davidwhatshisnam
3.5/5  rDev -18.4%

Photo of xylophonica
3.5/5  rDev -18.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a 75cl bottle into a chalice.

A - Dark ruby-brown colour. Minimal head.

S - Slight nutty & caramel aromas.

T - Sweet cacao flavours with a hint of nuts. Actually quite sweet, but with a fairly typical smooth bruin taste.

M - Sweet on the palate.

D - Pleasant to drink without being overly mindblowing.

I'd only ever had Achel once before and it was the blonde. This bruin was ok but really kinda average given the high standard I expect of Trappist ales.

Photo of wyatt13
3.5/5  rDev -18.4%

Photo of tom10101
3.5/5  rDev -18.4%

Photo of DARIVA
3.53/5  rDev -17.7%
look: 5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A: Perfect amber beer with a beautiful head.

S: The smells are not really recognizable, something sweet.

T: The taste is slightly sweet beer.

M: Delicious carbonation and a good foam feeling.

O: Not easily drinkable, beer with a bitter aftertaste.

Photo of Rastacouere
3.55/5  rDev -17.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Dark brown, reddish hints. Good-sized sticky off-white head. Very malty aroma, good yeast dose. Very fruity (dates, grapes), but also has various other malty tones (chocolate, caramel). Gentle alcohol vapors. Rather acidic taste in a yeasty-fruity kind of way. More dates and green grapes. Achel yeast doesn’t provide any dryness. Sweet and closing to licorice at times. Honeyish, herbal. Mostly malty from the beginning until the end. Finish could use some punch. Highly carbonated, medium bodied. It’s just not very exciting and feels like it has been done already.

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Achel Trappist Extra from Brouwerij der St. Benedictusabdij de Achelse
95 out of 100 based on 418 ratings.