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Achel Trappist Extra - Brouwerij der St. Benedictusabdij de Achelse

Not Rated.
Achel Trappist ExtraAchel Trappist Extra

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
95
world-class

403 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 403
Reviews: 205
rAvg: 4.29
pDev: 9.79%
Wants: 99
Gots: 38 | 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: 403 | Reviews: 205 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of mscudder
4.43/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

750 served in a chalice.

A - Deep brown hue with a one-finger ivory head. Retention was short lived but left fair lacing.

S - Dark fruits, dark fruits and then more dark fruits. Lots of plum, sweet raisin, touch of fig and nutmeg. Perhaps a bit of citrus.

T- Sweeter on the tongue than on the nose. Nice esters and a dry taste throughout. Flavors follow from those described on the nose, although more distinctive courtesy of candi sugar.

M - Medium body with lively carbonation. I would prefer a fuller body with a touch less dryness. Well done nonetheless.

O - This is a strong showing that I can see enjoying on a number of occasions. A bit steep at $18, but you get what you pay for.... and this is excellent.

mscudder, Apr 23, 2013
Photo of Spider889
4.5/5  rDev +4.9%

Spider889, Apr 08, 2013
Photo of Honus1
4.25/5  rDev -0.9%

Honus1, Apr 08, 2013
Photo of Elbrownbag
4/5  rDev -6.8%

Elbrownbag, Apr 02, 2013
Photo of cosmonick
4.25/5  rDev -0.9%

cosmonick, Mar 29, 2013
Photo of Chrysostom
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).

Chrysostom, Mar 28, 2013
Photo of jgammoniv
4.5/5  rDev +4.9%

jgammoniv, Mar 20, 2013
Photo of saeh
4.5/5  rDev +4.9%

saeh, Mar 16, 2013
Photo of WynnO
5/5  rDev +16.6%

WynnO, Mar 15, 2013
Photo of coreyfmcdonald
4.35/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

750ml bottle into a snifter

A: Pours a very dark amber with two fingers of very dense off white head. Decent retention.

S: Great balance and complexity. I love the dark fruit aromas here - prunes and raisins mixed with plums and even a bit of peach. A bit musty with orange zest and nutmeg. As the beer warms, I get some caramel sweetness to add to the complexity.

T: Esters are surprisingly strong in this beer as compared to the aroma. Lemon and orange zest mixed with nutmeg are apparent. Sweet prunes are also there, but not particularly strong. The beer stays quite dry throughout.

M: A bit thin with fairly strong carbonation.

O: The aroma on this beer is amazingly complex and balanced. The flavor is good, but not quite as strong on the dark fruits as I'd like.

coreyfmcdonald, Mar 14, 2013
Photo of Alieniloquium
4.05/5  rDev -5.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

750 mL bottle poured into a CBS snifter. Bottled 10/16/2009, I think. Bottle was getting quite old so I opened it.

Appearance - Deep brown with a bit of murk. Builds a nice head as I pour it, as many Belgian darks do. Thick collar as the khaki head recedes.

Smell - I always find it difficult to describe these aromas. It's not caramel, it's much fruitier, but it has a brown sugar tinge to it. Definitely some heat to this, too. Not a sweet aroma.

Taste - Much fruitier right up front. Touch of sweetness. Dark fruits give way to quite a bit of earthy and slightly bitter flavors. Some oxidation could be the cause of the bitterness. Not as boozy as the nose.

Mouthfeel - It is just a little bit thin. Oxidized and bitter, but still a nice drink. Medium carbonation.

Overall - Probably should have drank this sooner. Kept at 55 degrees for 3 years or so, but still showing some age. Still quite a good beer, though.

Alieniloquium, Mar 14, 2013
Photo of nzerbe
4/5  rDev -6.8%

nzerbe, Mar 03, 2013
Photo of Daniellobo
4.1/5  rDev -4.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Long complex and notable dark ale.

Presentation: 750 ml capped green bottle. Bland label with the name of the brewery in burgundy, cream and white. .Side notes offer small description noting intent and background. Shows notched best by date 16 N 12, and Alc. by Vol. (9.5%). Served circumstantially in a tulip glass.

A - Deep ruby brown pours, generous head, good retention, fair surface memory, with some touches of some lacing.

S - Very sweet and fruity nose, long sense of figs, prunes and yeast woven in…

T - … sugar. Very sugary at first with the complex dark dried fruit spectrum unfolding shortly thereafter. Reiterates a rather sugary if well integrated narrative as it settles that leads to a complex range of port/dark fruit/vinous notes, dark caramel..

M - Medium-full body with generous carbonation.

O - Plenty of complexity, yeasty fruitiness leaning on its sweet edge. A snifter for this next time…

Notes: Almost the last Trappist brewery I had to try.
and it is well in line with the expected quality for the denomination. This fists well with the range of most reserve quads/specialty strong dark ales. Nice offering worth the memory and repeat.

Daniellobo, Mar 03, 2013
Photo of spoony
4.25/5  rDev -0.9%

spoony, Mar 03, 2013
Photo of deac83
4.25/5  rDev -0.9%

deac83, Mar 02, 2013
Photo of Seaba
4.75/5  rDev +10.7%

Seaba, Feb 26, 2013
Photo of bigred89
3.5/5  rDev -18.4%

bigred89, Feb 25, 2013
Photo of roblund
4.5/5  rDev +4.9%

roblund, Feb 19, 2013
Photo of unclekeith
4.5/5  rDev +4.9%

unclekeith, Feb 19, 2013
Photo of bsopko
4/5  rDev -6.8%

bsopko, Feb 16, 2013
Photo of superspak
4.33/5  rDev +0.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

750 ml bottle into chalice, best before May 2013. Pours hazy very dark reddish brown color with a nice 1 finger dense cream colored head with good retention, that reduces to a thin cap that lingers. Nice spotty soapy lacing clings on the glass. Aromas of big raisin, apple, pear, prune, caramel, molasses, brown sugar, toast, dark bread, light clove, pepper, herbal, and earthy yeast spiciness. Damn nice aromas with great balance and complexity of malt and fruity esters. Taste of big raisin, pear, apple, prune, caramel, molasses, toast, toffee, brown sugar, dark bread, chocolate, earth, and light yeast spiciness. Lingering notes of dark fruits, caramel, molasses, toast, toffee, chocolate, dark bread, earth, and light yeast spiciness on the finish for a while. Fantastic balance and complexity of dark malt and fruity esters; with zero cloying sweetness present after the finish. Light carbonation and fairly full bodied; with a very slick and creamy mouthfeel that is great. The low carbonation works very well here. Alcohol is extremely well hidden with zero warming noticed after the finish. Overall this is a fantastic Belgian strong dark ale! Fantastic balance and complexity of dark malt and fruity ester flavors; very smooth and lush to sip on. A highly enjoyable offering as expected.

superspak, Feb 16, 2013
Photo of nyrblue2
4.5/5  rDev +4.9%

nyrblue2, Feb 09, 2013
Photo of wyatt13
3.5/5  rDev -18.4%

wyatt13, Feb 05, 2013
Photo of BrewmanCapote
4.5/5  rDev +4.9%

BrewmanCapote, Feb 04, 2013
Photo of DmanGTR
4.5/5  rDev +4.9%

DmanGTR, Feb 02, 2013
Achel Trappist Extra from Brouwerij der St. Benedictusabdij de Achelse
95 out of 100 based on 403 ratings.