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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.

211 Reviews
no score

(Send Samples)
Reviews: 211
Hads: 445
Avg: 4.27
pDev: 13.82%
Wants: 127
Gots: 55 | FT: 2
Brewed by:
Brouwerij der St. Benedictusabdij de Achelse visit their website

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
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters
Reviews: 211 | Hads: 445
Photo of rvdoorn
4.5/5  rDev +5.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Previously know as "de drie wijzen", now the Achel extra.
Look: the beer pours a dark-chestnut color, with a great yellowish head.
Smell: roasted malts, chocolate, dark fruits and some nuts
Taste: Malts, dark fruit, chocolate, nutty, with a nice hoppy finish
Mouthfeel: full body, oily with medium carbonation
Overall: Great beer

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Photo of Mitchster
4.5/5  rDev +5.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

$12.99 for a 750ml bottle, capped. The bottle is green and features the standard brown, white and tan Achel label, but it says "Trappist Extra", and it states 9.50% ABV on the label, so I assume it must be this beer. Pours out to a cloudy dark chestnut, forming a tightly beaded large light tan head with excellent retention and lacing. Flittering bits of flocculent yeast swim about. Carbonation is medium, a little lighter than typical for the style (which I prefer). The aroma is quality and very nice...cleanly fermented with lots of fruity esters like apple, pineapple, mango. An underbelly of alcohol, white pepper, dust and chocolate appears when swirled. The mouthfeel is full bodied and very smooth, with a long fruity finish. The taste starts with some spicy phenols, followed by dark candi sugar, some lightly toasted malts, more apples, mangos, and pineapple. Brown sugary sweetness is throughout and the bitterness is very mild, giving the brew an overall almost syrupy sweetness, teetering on the edge of being cloying. In the aftertaste, I'm getting spices akin to a Xmas ale...suggestions of ginger and perhaps nutmeg are in there.

Overall, this is a quality beer that was very enjoyable. It's not as complex as some of it's brethren. A touch more bitterness would go a long way to make this an absolute complex beast.

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Photo of maxpower
4.5/5  rDev +5.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

750 ml capped bottle pours a cloudy brown color with a huge creamy light brown head that leaves a sticky lacing in my glass. Nutty fruity aromas, flavors of spice, plums, figs, caremel and chocolate. Full bodied with a creamy, silky mouthfeel, finishes on the sweet side, alcohol very well hidden at 9.5%.

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Photo of dgilks
4.5/5  rDev +5.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Dark chestnut colour with mahogany highlights. Great light tan head with solid creamy appearance.

Massive dried fruit notes. Raisin and date. Interesting melanoidin note that works really well.

Big and complex malt flavour. Rich and chewy combination of dried fruit and toffee. The spicy yeast notes are a little muted but play well into the overall flavour palate.

Medium body with moderate carbonation. Not too much which complements this beer.

A really solid beverage. Excellent flavour profile and complexity.

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4.51/5  rDev +5.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

A very carbonated dark brown body shows lots of bubbles on the sides of the glass. Hints of ruby red come through at the edges when held to light. Head is a sandy tan in color at three fingers tall with rocky bubbles that leave decent lacing. nose is soft but includes notes of apple pie, butter milk biscuits, and spicey wheat. upon first sip you get almost perfect mix of robust freshness, sweet and spicey. Many different lovely notes exist including fig, grape juice, red licorice, and ground wheat grain. The mouthfeel is velvety and smooth, as this one warms the belly well. A big complex feer with solid drinkability. You can almost taste the care that the monks put into making this beer. Ripe and delecious.

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Photo of geexploitation
4.51/5  rDev +5.6%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pours very cloudy and not too dark -- dubbel color -- with a creamy tan head that sticks well. Smells are rich and inviting, with some dark spices and clay-like yeast notes on top, underpinned by rich, pruney fruits. On the palate, absolutely huge flavors all around. Big fruits first off, then things switch rapidly to yeasty chocolate malted milk and rich, smooth malt sweetness. Sharp spices crop up toward the end, along with more juicy, fruity sweetness at the finish. Complex and delectable. Mouthfeel is full of carbonation and thick malts -- it's a very filling beer. Alcohol is present in the taste and mouthfeel, but somehow that enhances things rather than detract from them. Overall, this is a fantastic dark Belgian ale. It's got everything you want from the style -- complexity, rich malts, fruity yeast esters, complexity in flavor and aroma, even some smoothness. Great stuff.

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Photo of ToolHead
4.52/5  rDev +5.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

75 cl bottle; served in DBF 2004 glass.
Deep reddish brown; moderate head. Pleasant, assertive aroma with alcoholic presence and an impressive, spicy touch. Enormous taste, full of malt, alcohol, and spice; very much in-your-face. Sweetness dominates the highly complex impression, and the finish is wonderfully long and warming.
Mouthfeel is soft and rather sugary, though never unpleasantly so. Drinkability is good.
A highly impressive beer.

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Photo of BeerLover729
4.52/5  rDev +5.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Dark, cloudy beverage topped by a light tan head consisting of large bubbles.

S: Caramel, apple, raspberry, astringent harshness. Crazy mixture.

T: Raspberry stands out the most from all the fruity esters but there is a presence of the apricot/date/general dark fruits thing going on and even maybe a little banana. The raspberry and other fruitiness fades to a wonderful caramel creaminess followed by a phenolic astringenty finish.

M: Medium body and bubbly carbonation. Creamy maltyness lingers on the tongue but not in a cloying way.

D: Goes down well. Each sip shows a new aspect of this complex beer.

Notes: Awesome. Trappist yeasts, gotta love em!

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Photo of mzwolinski
4.52/5  rDev +5.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Dark brown, with a lacy, thin halo of an off-white head. Not much to look at, but the aroma intrigues. Woody and slightly sour in character, the scent becomes juicier, fruitier as it sits. Candi sugar sweetness starts the sip, soon harnassed by a woody character that runs throughout. As the beer warms, this malt develops more figgy, and even grapey character. A gentle, cinnamon spice lends character to a cocoa-like malt body. Somewhat peppery in the finish where the spice kicks in, but the alcohol is overall quite unobtrusive. Mouthfeel is a bit tangy, but fairly full and coating in spite of this. Quite a lovely brew!

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Photo of Dope
4.52/5  rDev +5.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Bottle dated "Best Before End" July 16th 2012. Oh well.

A: Pours a murky reddish-brown with a good sized frothy tan head. Fades slowly, leaving moderate lacing behind.

S: Loaded with brown sugar and caramel. Strong raisins with a bit of dates. Touch of earthy cocoa. Very nice.

T: Super sweet and malty. Lots and lots of caramel, brown sugar and some toffee up front. Sweet raisin, date and fig kicks in in the middle. Hints of cocoa and earth with more brown sugar. Ends only slightly bitter with some more dark fruits and spices. Lingering brown sugar between sips. This is really nice.

M: Heavy and sweet but carbonation cuts it a bit. Not too cloying or syrupy, but borderline.

O: Strong flavors yet well-integrated and complimentary. Great balance of flavors and quite sweet - but not syrupy. Hits all the right notes for a great BSDA. Instantly one of my all-time favorites.

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Photo of thekevlarkid
4.52/5  rDev +5.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Yet another oddity provided by the awesome BA members of VT; cheers to whoever brought this rare bottle! The appearance was murky and mud-colored with one finger of sandalwood-colored head. The retention was decent as a collar but it left only spots of lacing. The aroma was of wood, caramel, toasted malt, toffee, alcohol and candy sugars. Pungent and complex. The flavors were similarly layered. Starting with a flash of sweetness I then tasted the heartier notes of wood, earth, toasted malt and bitter hops. Hints of leather, coffee and chocolate lurked underneath the dark fruits, caramel, brown sugar and sour apples. Tight and well organized. The coffee finish was dry and clean. The body was light which was a surprise, the carbonation was low and the mouthfeel was creamy. Dangerously drinkable and light despite the high alcohol percentage. A real joy to sample and an excellent example of the style.

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Photo of MCDuhamel
4.53/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a capped 750 ml bottle into a chalice glass, at around 50 F. Pours a very dark ruby liquor, with a dense meringue like head that coats the side of the glass. Lively carbonation is evident. The nose is a bit subtle, but mostly of fig and dried fruit, with a bit of clove. On the palette there's more of the same, but it is more evident and followed by a pronounced spiciness of alcohol, whose warming presence is made apparent. Some toffee-like character shows as well, with a definite impression from the carbonation cutting what could otherwise be a cloying sweetness. The finish is surprisingly dry, with a slightly sour fade. The mouthfeel is moderate; a bit coating, but again balanced by vigorous carbonation. There's a creaminess lent by the head.

Overall this is a world-class beer, and among the best Trappist ales I've had. It's very hard to find in Cleveland, but definitely worth seeking out.

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Photo of augustgarage
4.55/5  rDev +6.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Best before November, 2009 (making this a 2005 vintage?). Poured from a 750mL bottle into my Trappist Westvleteren goblet.

Cloudy sienna liquid glows a gentle copper when held to a strong light. A small active khaki head recedes to a flat lasting collar and slick. Tiny microbubbles feed the surface. Good retention, sandy lacing, and viscous tears slide down the sides.

Resinous tobacco, cocoa, banana leaf, figs, raisin, fine rum in the nose - complex and inviting though with just the faintest hint of oxidation.

Deep penetrating malt on the palate unfolding slowly with rich sweet complexity - demerara, turbinado, honey, and leather are each hinted at. A touch of dark fruit and rye (both probably coming from the slumbering yeast) lead into the long delicate finish.

Medium bodied, lightly effervescent, and filling (though never hot).

Already one of the best examples of the style (I still think of this as more of a "quad"), it ages very well. Best served with cheese and contemplation.

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Photo of eric5bellies
4.55/5  rDev +6.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Drank from my Achel chalice.

A - This beer pous a dark mahogany colour with a large off white head that reduces to a film and laces.

S - Lots of burnt sugars and spicey dark fruit.

T - Very earthy notes that are complimented with plenty of dark fruits and burnt sugars.

M - Medium body and carbonation makes for a great balance.

D - This takes the Bruin to a higher level and right to the top of what Belgian Ales have to offer.

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Photo of cyrenaica
4.55/5  rDev +6.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

750ml bottle
9.5% ABV
I tried this beer on September 24, 2009 at "The beerbistro" in Toronto, Ontario, Canada. The beer poured out a murky brown colour with reddish hues and a thin white head. The aroma was malt, yeast, and plenty of dark fruit tones like plums. The mouthful was fulkl-bodied with medium carbonation. The flavour was plums and licorice with a hint of hoppy bitterness. An excellent beer.

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Photo of Damian
4.57/5  rDev +7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Drank from a 75 cl/1 pint 9.4 fl oz bottle
Best before end 2 09
Acquired in a trade with yllwsmly
Served in a chalice

The beer poured a deep, dark, semi-transparent mahogany color with a creamy, tan colored, one-finger head that faded to a clingy, resilient film. Some spotty lacing stuck along the glass.

The aroma was incredibly spicy and smooth. Ultra fruity, phenolic and sweet with a distinct Belgian yeast quality. Strong notes of clove and brown sugar were apparent as well.

The taste was rich, full-flavored and rather complex. Sweet, smooth and fruity up front with a noticeable booziness. Dark fruits (dates and figs) and brown sugar came through strong. Woody with dark candi sugar and rich malty notes. Quite spicy in the center. Clove was most apparent. The semi-dry finish was a mix of tangy (candied orange peel) and sweet (brown sugar, once again) flavors. Sweet, sugary notes trailed in the aftertaste.

The mouthfeel was light and fluffy on the palate. Somewhat sudsy with a lively, spritzy effervescence. Nearly cloud-like.

Drinkability was quite good. Although I felt the alcohol prowess of this brew, it was not overwhelming. Remarkably, as the beer warmed, the alcohol presence seemed to subside.

This is truly a delectable treat, perfect for savoring on a cold winter night.

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Photo of lordofthewiens
4.58/5  rDev +7.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A seriously good beer. A 750ml capped bottle, with best by 10/08 on the label. It was a dark brown with some red highlights. Nice thick tan head. A fruity, vinous aroma. Exceptional taste. Dark fruit, yeast, malt, wine all wonderfully well-balanced. Smooth and quite drinkable.

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Photo of dsa7783
4.58/5  rDev +7.3%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Wonder what an $18.00 beer tastes like? A cream colored and brown logo pasted on a traditional green 1pint 9.4 fl oz bottle... Purchased at Gary's in Madison... Bottle-sticker specifically says Achel Trappist Extra and states that this is the "Weighty, undeniable Extra"... Probably one of the best appearances that I have ever witnessed in a beer... Humongous frothy, foamy, head lays atop a dark brown, slightly ruby-red colored hue... Very complex smell, creamy, with strong roasted malt aroma... Intricate, weighty, immense taste, powerful, rich, and thick, with a creamy texture... full of malts, caramel, nutty flavors... A truly amazing taste, deep, dark, rich and satisfying that is a step above most common beers and even most other Belgians... An all-around, excellent Trappist beer... although I had to open my wallet wide on this one, it was certainly worth it... Awesome mouthfeel and the hefty 9.5% ABV is hardly noticeable... Definitely recommended...

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Photo of ales4baldo
4.58/5  rDev +7.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

P-Simple Trappist bottle. Standard label with the authentic Trappist product logo.

A-Poured thick. Got about a nice finger and a half of head that seems to fall off quick. Must cocoa brown with a coffee appearence. Cloudy and foggy.

S-Like with most Belgian's, lots of yeast and malts and candy. Dont really get much smell as it all seems to hide beneath the carbonation.

T-Oh wow, what you cant smell is made up in flavor. A delicate balance of all things good. Malts and candy seem to be up front. Yeast and grains seem to linger about. Come through strong and finishes soft.

M-Really smooth beer. Very smooth. Delicate and precise. I really like the heavy malt prescense in this one. Has a very quick finish and no linger at all, also finishes really dry.

O-A really good beer. I like the crisp quick draw this beers has so as to forget what you had and makes you want more. Smooth and subtle in so many ways with upfront flavors.

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Photo of francisweizen
4.58/5  rDev +7.3%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Dark crimson chestnut brown with a nice head of off-whiet foam. Good LLR - Legs, Lacing, and Retention. Aromas of dark fruits, figs, candy sugar, sweets, deeply complex dark malt, and dark fruit, as well as faint herbal hop. Taste is big malty dark fruit, a bit spicy and yeast with a faint herbal tinge of hops. Mouthfeel is creamy and mouth filling. Drinkability remains great. A classic.

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Photo of orfeu
4.6/5  rDev +7.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Cloudy brown with a ridiculous amount of yeast particulates floating around. Regal-looking off-white head with mesmerizing lacing. Aroma is cloves, caramelized fruit, figs, pressed apple cider. On the tongue: spiced and candied dried cherries, sugard figs, caramelized prunes, ground allspice. Slight alcohol burn at the end with a pleasantly buzzy finish. The mouthfeel is creamy and full -- simply magnificent. I could drink this every single night, although I'd feel absolutely gluttonous if I actually did. This bottle finishes quickly every time. Worth every penny.

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Photo of emerge077
4.62/5  rDev +8.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Got my hands on this seldom-seen beauty... "Achelse Kluise" old parchment style label.

Pours a rich caramelly brown into a wide chalice. Slight foam lingers and settles to an irregular skim. Suspended particles float languidly within.

Smells very enticing, toffee, fig, a little vinous. Slight booziness that integrates into a siren song of an aroma. Almost like it's calling you to drink it...

Tastes rich and complex, seriously vinous. Starts with a little sweetness, spilling a fruit basket of plum, grape, figs, and raisins. Bready malts hold it up throughout, and a slightly bitter finish resembles a red table wine. Chocolate, Belgian yeast, and wine grape echo in the finish also.

Mouthfeel is medium and isn't weighed down by the rich flavors. The sweet alcohol feels a little like brandy...though not cloying, and extremely easy to drink. If you find it for sale, buy it...

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Photo of spointon
4.62/5  rDev +8.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 750ml green bottle into a St. Bernardus chalice glass. Produced a super-carbonated gusher when bottle was opened.

A= This ale poured a dark murky brown color with a 1.5" creamy tan head. The head retained quite a while and eventually settled to a thin skim. Nice sticky lace left behind on my glass.

S= A nice malty sweet aroma started things off, with notes of pumpernickel bread, candi sugar, and dark fruit all present. There was also a great Belgian yeast character in there too.

T= Very much like the aroma with a bread, treacle, and all around malty sweetness leading into a nice fruit and estery middle. Big flavors or raisins, plums, and dark berries. The yeast character was all Belgian but not terribly musty or funky. Finished a bit sweet with very little alcohol presence.

MF= Medium bodied with a fairly soft feel despite the high amount of carbonation.

D= There are Belgian Strong Dark Ales I like better, and other Trappist ales I like better, but that doesn't take away from the fact that this is a delicious, world class ale. Though I split this bottle, the alcohol stayed dangerously hidden and I believe I could have taken down a bottle or two by myself if I was in the right mood.

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Photo of marburg
4.65/5  rDev +8.9%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Not since the Stay-Puft Marshmellow man have I seen something so fluffy and delightful as the head atop this beer -- so much so that I'll ignore the healthy shade of brown in the beer itself and focus on the head. Rolling the liquid around in the glass, it's hard to be entranced by the bulbous mass of bubbles that cling together and tumble around the glass like a big, soft marble.

And the aroma! Ben & Jerry's Phish Food ice cream, complete with vanilla and cookie dough. Raw, sinful cookie dough. Woody and natural. Brown sugar and molasses are the picture to the doughy vanilla frame.

Similar, glorious sensations await the taste buds; through more brown sugar and cookie dough, I can't help but think of a 3 Musketeers candy bar. (And a creamy, creamy, creamy mouthfeel.) Except maybe the candy bar is fermented and chilling out inside an oak barrel. There's a lingering cherry sweetness that manages to escape the relatively dry finish. Really exotic, lusty, fun stuff.

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Photo of LiquidAmber
4.66/5  rDev +9.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured into a Gavroche tulip. Pours a dark., murky red-orange brown with a big, fine three finger light tan head with excellent retention and lots of lacing. Aroma of caramel malt, dark stone fruit, apple, clove, Belgian yeast. Flavor follows with caramel malt, dark and light stone fruit, apple and pear juice, clove, cinnamon and other earthy spicing, brown sugar, finishing with a semi-sweet, slightly sour burst of fruit flavors with light peppery spice from the clove and maybe hops. Beautifully integrated and flavorful. Medium bodied with really nice peppery carbonation that complements the spicing. An excellent, well balanced, complex Belgian dark that is very flavorful. The taste seems a bit subdued at first compared to the two top well-known Belgian strong ales, but the flavor builds and gets more interesting throughout the taste. Complex flavor covers the ABV well, making this a dangerous ale because it continually invites tasting. World class. Glad I finally got to try this rare beer.

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