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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 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 taylor12k
taylor12k

New York

4.08/5  rDev -4.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

poured into two tulip beer glasses (sharing with friend)

poured a cloudy amber with a big, soft head that dissipated within about a minute or two.

we had it on the nose for a long time. we both agreed on really strong honey with strawberry overtones.

taste was honey as well with extended honey aftertaste. thick flavor, not very dry.

now, for clarification sake.. i'm not a fan of belgian beers and would have rated this one a bit lower, simply because i'm not always into these sweeter types of beers. my friend, on the other hand, loves belgian beers and felt it was above average... right up there with the best.

Serving type: bottle

04-10-2011 03:33:03 | More by taylor12k
Photo of Knapp85
Knapp85

Pennsylvania

4.7/5  rDev +9.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

This beer is so good, the look of the beer is very nice. It pours from the bottle as a dark red color with some brown hues. The aroma is sweet like caramel and some fruits in there too. The flavors are sweet, dry and complex. Every sip is so enjoyable. The mouthfeel is medium to light, not overly thick at all. Achel Extra is overall very good and is great all around.

Serving type: bottle

04-03-2011 19:46:05 | More by Knapp85
Photo of petacutlasaurus
petacutlasaurus

Maryland

4.25/5  rDev -0.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Phew. Grabbed one recently for the minimalism of it, gathering dust on the back shelf. Glad I did! Super effervescent dark beer with inches of dark brown head that faded quickly. Smelled great with a load of dark fruits, caramel and alcohol. The taste was mostly determined by the dark fruit, but was elaborated with some burnt, smokey tinges as well as some whiskey notes and a little bit of leather and earth on the finish. All in all, a great beer that's really betrayed by its inauspiciousness and usual position deep in the back of the lowest shelf. Can't wait to try this out of the bottle one day.

Serving type: bottle

03-30-2011 01:13:45 | More by petacutlasaurus
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 Brunite
Brunite

Illinois

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.

Serving type: bottle

03-06-2011 21:17:34 | More by Brunite
Photo of jhubeifc
jhubeifc

Taiwan

4.4/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

I continue my Trappist tasting with Achel Trappist Extra so I'll get right to it.
It poured a clear caramel brown which became cloudy as the gorgeous head formed. And when I say gorgeous, I mean this was the best head I can ever remember getting from a bottled beer. Three fingers of stunning light and frothy head at first but becoming thick and sticky in the center of the glass and slowly diminishing entire drink. There was a little bob of it at the base of my empty glass.
It had clear yeast or fresh bread on the nose with a faint alcohol touch in the background, expected with a 9.5% abv.
It tasted of bitter spice, light smoke, very, very faint whiskey. The carbonation was even across the tongue giving it a very smooth texture and making it quite drinkable for such a strong beer. It had a nice wet finish too which surprised me as I expected it to finish dry.
This beer really, really impressed me and I will certainly go back to it again in the not so distant future. In fact, there were not that many at my local spot, maybe I'll go clear out the shelf.

Serving type: bottle

02-13-2011 03:17:13 | More by jhubeifc
Photo of roblowther
roblowther

Texas

4.43/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

2007 bottle, aged @ about 58F, opened 1/11. Pours with an effervescent, frothy head that settles into a creamy layter that leaves nice lacing. The beer is ruddy mahogany and just gorgeous, really. The smell is raisins, cherries, cranberries, leather and a sugary caramel that makes the beer seem it will be very sweet (which the fresher examples I've had indicate it can be). The taste is just wonderful. That leather hits first, then cacao, a slight sharpness, a hint of sweet, then a lovely dry, earthy finish that just makes you want more. The mouthfeel is slight carbonation and then a slickness, a bit lighter than it looks or tastes. Drinkability is great, the alcohol is just a warm afterthought and the balance between the sweet and dry makes it go down very easy. To be honest, this has always been at the bottom of the Trappist list but aging this thing really brings out a lot that you don't get with the fresh stuff, beating out what we had at the monastery even though those glasses had the "I'm drinking it where its made with the monks after searching for this place forever" cachet. A VERY nice surprise!

Serving type: bottle

01-31-2011 00:57:26 | More by roblowther
Photo of acehart1
acehart1

New York

4.72/5  rDev +10%
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.

Serving type: bottle

01-23-2011 01:22:28 | More by acehart1
Photo of Thorpe429
Thorpe429

Illinois

4.05/5  rDev -5.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Bottled shared with Amyliz4. Served in a Mikasa goblet.

Pours a brownish-red color with a good off-white head and quite a bit of initial lacing. The head is fairly stable with pretty good retention. Eventually this falls into a thin collar and a cap comprised of a few bubbles. The nose is really nice and sweet at cellar temperature with plenty of dark fruits, toffee, and some dates. Caramel-like sweetness abounds.

The flavor is a bit more mellow and subdued. There is a bit of bitterness and the sweetness isn't nearly as strong. There are some dark fruits and a bit of a toffee presence, but not like what I was finding in the nose. Not nearly as complex, but still quite good. Bitterness is a bit out of place. Slight bitterness mixing with the alcohol is a bit strange, but I can work with it. Low carbonation and a medium body. Overall, a pretty tasty beer and I'm glad to finally try a bottle of this.

Serving type: bottle

01-14-2011 01:33:07 | More by Thorpe429
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 SFLpunk
SFLpunk

Vermont

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?

Serving type: bottle

12-01-2010 04:10:09 | More by SFLpunk
Photo of domtronzero
domtronzero

California

4.13/5  rDev -3.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A - Pours a deep mahogany brown with a huge frothy tan head. Lacing left all over.

S - Sweet pils malts, fruity esters, quite yeasty. Light boozy alcohol detrcted.

F/M - Very complex. Caramel, over-ripened fruits, plums, prunes and raisins. Sweet up front, but a little spicy in the finish. Alcohol flavors in the aftertaste. Moderate bitterness, medium bodied with moderately high carbonation.

D - Overall this is an excellent brew. Complex yet comparably easy-drinking. A definite sipper.

Serving type: bottle

11-25-2010 01:34:45 | More by domtronzero
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 jneiswender
jneiswender

Massachusetts

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

Poured out of a bottle into a tasting glass. Served cool.

A-amber-burgundy body and an off white head

S-barnyard, alcohol, sugar candy and light floral scent

T-complex. Grainy front with plum, toffee and alcohol notes.

M-medium

D-Delightful. Pleasantly complex. Great holiday beer. I would drink this again if it weren't so hard to find.

Serving type: bottle

11-23-2010 02:48:49 | More by jneiswender
Photo of megahurts4
megahurts4

Louisiana

4.28/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Achel Extra

Appearance: dark brown, medium-small head, and good lacing.

Smell: dark fruits, subtle hops, and slight malts.

Taste: dark fruits (figs, dates, etc), slight malts, and a nice sweetness.

Mouthfeel: medium and a bit of carbonation.

Overall:
This is a very nice Trappist. It has a good candy sweetness in the finish. It also is fairly carbonated.

Serving type: bottle

11-17-2010 04:16:52 | More by megahurts4
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 cdrogers
cdrogers

Illinois

5/5  rDev +16.6%
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.

Serving type: bottle

10-17-2010 03:21:01 | More by cdrogers
Photo of xylophonica
xylophonica

Australia

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.

Serving type: bottle

09-30-2010 11:33:50 | More by xylophonica
Photo of BobZ
BobZ

Massachusetts

4.13/5  rDev -3.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

25.4 Oz. bottle, Poured into my St. Bernardus chalice. Split with a buddy.

Appearance: Dark brown, head builds to a creamy 1/2" like the Bruin then also exhibits excellent lacing.

Smell: Beautiful, very deep, Belgian yeast, dark fruit, some sweet dark sugar.

Taste: Very nice, sweet, deep, dark fruit (raisin and plumb), hints of brown sugar sweetness.

Mouth feel: Excellent carbonation, silky smooth on the palate.

Drinkability: Very, very, Drinkable, ABV is completely hidden.

Exceptional quad/strong dark ale, falling just short of the St. Bernardus or Westvleteren class.

Serving type: bottle

08-28-2010 03:48:04 | More by BobZ
Photo of BEERchitect
BEERchitect

Kentucky

4.43/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

I must say that it is always a pleasure to drink any Belgian beer, much less one of this caliber for the very first time. True to Trappist Grand Cru fashion, this beer proves to be delicate, complex, powerful, and graceful all at once.

Fruity aromas begin with a grapey/raison flavor- met with figs, dates, and cola. Confectionate sweetness mixes with the malts for an appetizing and moutwatering delight.

The beer pours a medium brown, solid burgundy, rusty-hazy hue with light carbonation for a Belgian ale. A thin sheet of lace tops the beer and hands on to pockets of foam until the end of the session. Not the rocky head or effervescent carbonation that I'm used to seeing in stately Belgian ales.

The candied flavors of stone (dark, dehydrated) fruits continue in taste where the aromas layed off. Juicy plumbs, grapes, and apples turn to aged fruits of raisons, prunes, and figs as the beer warms. Light and herbal hops add to a balance against the powdered sugar focused malt sweetness. Cola nut and sweet rum give an insight to the rare intangibles that it takes to turn a great beer into a world class one. Savory and succulent thorughout.

Though sweetly textured throughout, the beer shows a sugary feel early on but then warms into a fleeting and powdery sweetness that morphs into sweet and dry alcohols and mild warmth- far lower than the impression of 9.5% abv. Simply effortless to drink, this beer exceeds all expectations.

Serving type: bottle

07-25-2010 07:02:26 | More by BEERchitect
Photo of cyrenaica
cyrenaica

Ontario (Canada)

4.55/5  rDev +6.1%
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.

Serving type: bottle

06-25-2010 22:34:46 | More by cyrenaica
Photo of JoEBoBpr
JoEBoBpr

Missouri

4.38/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured into a Chimay goblet from 75cl bottle.

A - Pours a very familiar murky and reddish brown with very minimal head that is off-white.

S - Very delicious yeasty aromas with some nice spice and good sweet malt plus some good sourdough bread aromas are present. There are nice fruit sweet hints. Pineapple, plums and some nice caramel as well. Nice clove as well.

T - This beer really shines in the flavor. Very nice and sweet caramel aroma with great dark fruits. Grape and some nice pineapple as well. Nice phenols and good yeast feel. There is some mild grainy breadyness that shines through at the end as the dry finish takes over. Very delicious.

M & D - Great medium body with nice CO2 which was surprising based on the head. Very nice balance and complexity at the same time. Delicious. Definitely a repeat but dangerous ABV.

Edit: As the beer warms the boozyness is SO very present.

Serving type: bottle

06-21-2010 22:02:34 | More by JoEBoBpr
Photo of AgentMunky
AgentMunky

California

4.48/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Poured from a 750mL bottle into a chalice.

A: Light woody colour with lots of sediment. Quickly dissipating head with nice tracing and mild lacing.

S: Bready, malty, sweet. Pleasant and tantalising.

T: Wow. This is good. Much like other Trappist dark ales...Dark, malty-sugary, somewhat thick and heavy on the tongue. The hops balance excellently and serve as a counteract the heavier sweet flavours. Mm, this is really good. Aftertaste is sweet, then neutral, with a hint of bitterness.

M: Never grows old, sweet and heavy. Very enjoyable.

D: Wonderful! A little heavy and alcoholic, but this is forgotten after a few sips. Highly recommended.

23 September 2012 re-review:
Poured from a 750mL bottle into a Koningshoeven chalice. Best before 8 August 2013.

4A: Light, almost white head. Good tracing; good lacing. The beer is dark, ruby brown with golden highlights in direct light.

4S: Pungent, alcoholic white grapes. Lightly tart, mostly sweet, very nice. Dark, wholesome bread fresh out of the oven.

4.5T: Yum! I'd forgotten how sweet and fruity this is. Almost like communion grape juice, but with a hint of alcohol and perfectly administered spice to balance the thick-sweet fruit. A consummate abbey ale, that's just a wee bit sticky (especially on the aftertaste) for a perfect score. A little jealous of my past-self, because there is no trace of bitterness in the beer I'm drinking. Maybe years of Double IPAs have skewed my tastebuds?

4.5M: It is sweet and heavy, but it never *does* get old.

4.5O: This bottle only gets a 4.5, but I don't begrudge the 5.0 rating. Absolutely recommended.

Serving type: bottle

06-18-2010 22:46:25 | More by AgentMunky
Photo of eric5bellies
eric5bellies

Australia

4.55/5  rDev +6.1%
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.

Serving type: bottle

06-18-2010 12:02:34 | More by eric5bellies
Achel Trappist Extra from Brouwerij der St. Benedictusabdij de Achelse
95 out of 100 based on 357 ratings.