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Trappist Achel 8° Bruin | Brouwerij der St. Benedictusabdij de Achelse

YOUR RATING = None |
BA SCORE
92
outstanding
429 Reviews
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BEER STATS
Reviews:
429
Ratings:
816
Avg:
4.12
pDev:
12.86%
 
 
Wants:
90
Gots:
107
For Trade:
1
Trappist Achel 8° BruinTrappist Achel 8° Bruin
BEER INFO

Brewed by:
Brouwerij der St. Benedictusabdij de Achelse
Belgium | website

Style: Dubbel

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 8.00%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by zerk on 01-14-2003

User Reviews
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Reviews: 429 | Ratings: 816
Photo of infinitebruner
4.17/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

June 10, 2016

11.2 oz bottle, snifter

A – Deep, rich, dark mahogany brown. Appears to be fairly clear, though hard to tell because of the dark color. A thick, sudsy, off-white head of an inch-plus hangs around for a while.

S – Caramel and toffee, slightly burnt, with red raisins and strong alcohol esters of pear. Perhaps the slightest herbal hopping, though that may also be the alcohol.

T – Very similar to the aroma profile. The caramel and toffee are prevalent, but a red grape juice flavor is there in place of the raisin (though those are obviously very similar, there’s a clear distinction.) The alcohol is less obvious as well.

M – Very sudsy, thick, juicy, though it actually finishes dry. Very malty, though not crazily sweet, and just a touch of bitterness for balance.

O – Fairly standard for a dubbel or strong dark, but also well executed. That touch of grape juice flavor is pleasant, and is a point of distinction.

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Photo of StonedTrippin
4.43/5  rDev +7.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

i like this even better than their tripel, and even though i paid 17 bucks for a single smell bottle at highland tap and burger, i dont regret it. ive been meaning to try this one for awhile, as it represents one of the last trappist offerings i have yet to get into. im so glad i did, its amazing, as good as any of the others. raisin brownish red with over two inches of tan head, airy and foamy, rising above the rim of the glass even, and lasting the entire drink. it smells amazing, an old world yeast strain, something very special there, and a nice long boilded caramelized malt profile, but stopping well short of that chocolate malt depth you would find in a brown ale. this is more of a dubbel, with fruit like fig and raisin to it, and a moderate sweetness all the way through. a little molasses, vanilla, alcohol warmth. some nice white pepper and clove spice from the yeast, but its all just so well integrated, very impressive. smooth in the feel, effervescent on the carbonation, and creamy, sort of rich and regal feeling, infinitely satisfying and dangerously drinkable for its strength (and price). an extraordinarily complex and impressive beer, as good as any of the trappist stuff. one of the great beers of the old world, not to be missed.

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Photo of FBarber
4.1/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours dark reddish brown with a two finger white head that dissipates leaving no lacing or head.

Smell has aromas of brown sugar, molasses, dried dark fruits, and caramel, Undertones of alcohol and a rich malty backbone to the aromas.

Taste has notes of brown sugar, prunes, raisins, molasses caramel initially giving way to a robust malty backbone. Mild hoppy bitterness on the aftertaste with a cramely sweet finish.Lingering malt favors continue afterward.

Feel has mild carbonation with a very smooth feel. Surprisingly drinkable masking the alcohol very well.

Overall an outstanding dubbel, but definitely a lesser Trappist Dubbel. Still an amazing beer and a must try.

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Photo of CAMRAhardliner
4.5/5  rDev +9.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours a dark bronze with a dense, frothy head that lasts the entire glass. Stewed fruit, raisins and bran barley in the nose. Plums, molasses, orange zest add nuance to the massive maltiness in the nose. The high ABVs very well hidden. The mouthfeel is creamy with carbonation and full bodied. The finish is medium dry with a lingering fruitiness.

This is a benchmark Dubbel. Fantastically complex and contemplative but also quaffable. Highly receommend seeking this old classic out.

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Photo of ckornmannn
4.59/5  rDev +11.4%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

From a bottle into a tulip: glowing dark amber, almost ruby hue. "Brown" doesn't do the color justice! Slightly hazy. Smell is dominated by yeast; sweet and herbal. Dark fruit/plum, apple, slightly peppery, complex and wonderful taste. Excellent tenacious head of foam. Dry finish. What a wonderful beer; a real treat.

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Photo of edward_boumil
4.29/5  rDev +4.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

L: Huge, cloud like head, bubbly off white color. Beer is a dark, nearly opaque brown color.
S: First and foremost is a spicy sweetness, with touches of alcohol. After that is a well-rounded sweetness, soft like brown sugar or caramel. Toffee and nuts.
T: Very good, a cotton-candy like sweetness. Slightly creamy, with notes of cherry and raisin. Slightly toasty
F: Well balanced. Also a smoothness to this one. Despite the robust flavors, crisp carbonation and heavy body, it finishes incredibly well-rounded and smooth.
O: Very solid dubbel. Would highly recommend.

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Photo of Catracho5
4.46/5  rDev +8.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

11.2 ounce beer poured into a Belgian stemmed glass

A: Pours a dark red, brown color with a tan colored head, head is full and creamy, a good amount of carbonation is streaming up the sides, beer is clear, some slight lacing, looks nice.

A: Belgian yeast notes, caramel, toffee, figs, raisins, bananas, hint of spice, lots of malts, smells really good.

T: Yeast, touch of banana, spice, clove, toffee, caramel, finish is dry with some spice emerging in the aftertaste, there's also figs and raisins, very balanced, smooth, complex, depth, very tasty.

M: Medium bodied with a good amount of carbonation, dry finish.

O: A very tasty beer, like most Belgian beers I've tasted, this beer is complex with depth, has a nice balance of flavors, a great medium bodied mouthfeel, and is very drinkable. I hope my local bottle shop continues to carry this as I would continually buy it.

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Photo of ArsMoriendiOU818
4.56/5  rDev +10.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Can't get this in my region so I'm very pleased to have gotten my hands on this finally. Poured into a st. Bernardus goblet. A world-class example of the style: pours the way it should, nice 3 finger head and spot-on Amber-brown color, wonderful scent and taste. Prickly carbonation felt on the tongue. If you're seeking out a dubbel, there's no reason not to reach for this one.

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Photo of Meyers1023
4.25/5  rDev +3.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Poured a very dark Amber color with a tan head that spreads to the edge of the glass quickly. Smell is toffee, raisins, and yeast. The flavor is sweet bread and dark fruits. You also get a bubble gum flavor from the yeast. The feel is medium with good carbonation. This is a great Belgian dubbel. It has an almost perfect combination of flavors.

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Photo of drmeto
3.97/5  rDev -3.6%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 4

L:
-pours a slightly hazy ruby-brown with a medium to big,foamy,offwhite head
-medium carbonation visible
S:
-caramel,toffee,strawberries,raisins,plums,figs,coriander,perfumy
T:
-nutty,cherries,strawberries,caramel,toffee,raisins,plums,earthy
F:
-medium carbonation
-light to medium body
-alcohol noticeable
O:
Very nice Dubbel,not as Yeast-heavy than other Trappists (Chimay,Rochefort,Westmalle)

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Photo of Zet
4.15/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Wow, very pretty dubbel: mohagony with amber around the edges and an awesome three fingers of frothy beige head that retains very well and leaves lacing on the glass. A full nose of malt, hoppy herbs and chocolate. Taste follows with the same flavours, very rich. Not as sweet as most dubbels; it tends to lean more to the bitter side actually. Taste is not very complex, but the amount of flavour is very satisfying. Mouth feel is how a dubbel should be: soft, smooth and creamy, with little to no carb noted. Very good dubbel.

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Photo of Ninjakillzu
4.83/5  rDev +17.2%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.75

L: Poured into a Chimay chalice. One finger width tan head, and a ruby red body. Slight carbonation was visible.

S: Apple, pear, citrus, caramel, dark fruit, malt.

T: Apple, pear, citrus, malt, dark fruits, slightly tangy.

F: Creamy, foamy, smooth, medium bodied, slight alcohol warmth.

O: A very good Dubbel.

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Photo of BeerChancelor
4.36/5  rDev +5.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Poured in a 30cl chalice.

A: Cloudy dark-brown with one-finger head. Medium carbonation.

S: Yeasty, dark malts, alcoholic, slight notes of citrus and spices.

T: Bready and malty, dark malts. Sweet in the beginning, transitioning to yeasty and a faint hop taste. Also, some dark fruits in the mix. A complex ensemble of flavors going on. Temperature is a huge factor!

M: Very smooth, medium-body.

O: I really like the complex flavor profile! Definitely one of my favorite dubbels. If I had to critique something, is that it doesn't have that "Je ne sais quoi." that would make it a superb beer!

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Photo of MrDell
4.27/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

30.05.2016
Trappist Achel 8° Bruin
Dubbel – 8% - 330ml Bottle - Best before 30.04.2017

I have had this Trappist a number of times before and I remember it as always been one an absolutely fantastic representation of one of my favourite styles. The recipe for the first of Achel’s beers being devised by the late Brother Thomas of Westmalle and this one by Brother Antoine of Rochefort using yeast, malt –some of which is a chocolate malt - and whole flower saaz hops from Westmalle.

Appearance: Very deep red in colour; more red and less brown than most dubbels. Had a huge three finger, just off white hide when poured but has now dropped back to a fluffy one finger of head, leaving some nice lacing in its wake. Lots of very small bubbles moving up outside of glass.

Aroma: Lots of sweet malt and a bit of booze on the nose along with toffee. There is a slight perfumed tang in the background.

Taste: It's the middle that this beer really triumphs in. Upfront, on the first sip I thought my memory had tricked me as there was not a great deal for a second or two just malt, and then you get a hit of toffee in the middle with then a fairly bitter finish for a dubbel, but then the Westmalle dubbel is similar in that respect. While this is not the most flavour some dubbel, it is one so drinkable and just slides down.

Mouthfeel: Fairly low in body considering the ABV and style. Very smooth and gentle on the palate, with a dry finish.

Overall: I did thoroughly enjoy this beer, but i can't help but feel that it's not all I thought it was when I had it before. I remember it as being the best dubbel I had ever tried at that point and full of flavour but this time around it seems a little muted.... maybe I've just been drinking too many quads recently. Memory is saying 11 / 10 overall for this Trappist brew but in reality, this evening, this 8 / 10. Will have to revisit this soon to see what’s going on!

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Photo of jmasher85
4.49/5  rDev +9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Holy shnikes! I tried this up against a most of the other easily available Trappists beers, and this one, while not the best, and certainly one of the least complex, might well have been one of the tastiest. I will happily buy it again. Reminds me of how much I used to adore Newcastle Brown Ale when I first started drinking beer, only this is much better and more...nutty, brown, delicious...in every way. Doesn't taste anything like the other Trappist beers, lacking any fruit at all, and a good deal of spice, but the nut, savory malt, and sweet toffee flavors make it undeniably excellent. Not to mention a fascinating sawdust aroma (trust me, it's a good thing). I kinda want another right now...

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Photo of josanguapo
4.68/5  rDev +13.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.75

From www.elcervecero.es. Playing Kings Bounty Dark Side, in La Trappe chalice. As good as the blonde version. I couldnt determine which of if best without drinking them side by side. Its drink quickly

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Photo of DaveBar
3.98/5  rDev -3.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Purchased at the LCBO for just over $3.00 for a 330ml bottle. Served at a bone chilling 4deg C in a tulip. Cellared for almost two years with an expiration date of 6/11/15.

A-Opens well and pours a nice high head that is gone in a minute but film stays forever. Dark brown, unfiltered.

S- Metallic. Boo!

T- Metallic- oxidation kills this beer but shouldn't after merely 1.5yrs away in a cold, dark cellar. Figs are there. Nice little dubbel after you get past the oxidation.

M- Nice and dry. Creaminess is there which is a nice break

O- Pretty good little beer. Have another in the cellar that will be choked back soon to avoid more oxidation.

Food Pairing

This pretty good beer went well with.... Beef stew with beef, potatoes, celery and carrots. Very good blend

Enjoy

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Photo of Jwale73
4.25/5  rDev +3.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

33cl bottle served in a tulip. 20/08/11 printed on the back label. Pours a mahogany hue with a slightly murky clarity and a dense, three inch, cream-colored head that eventually settles into a rocky, half inch cap leaving delicate, textured spatters of lacing in its wake. Nose expresses raisins, figs, prunes and yeast. Taste consistent with nose; however, there's a definite candied fruit quality added to the mix. Also, as the beer warms, some tannic notes are revealed as well as a cold-brewed tea character at the finish. Mouthfeel is light-medium in body (but closer to light) with a mild, even carbonation. Overall, this may be my favorite dubbel. Great complexity and flavor and I almost get a cotton candy character in the flavor profile. Truly top notch.

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Photo of FriarMickOnThePlateau
4.43/5  rDev +7.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

At 8% ABV, this is a Belgian Dark Strong, not a Dubbel.

Belgian Dark Strong Ales are dark, very rich, and complex. Most versions are unique in character reflecting characteristics of individual breweries. Authentic Trappist versions tend to be drier than Abbey versions, which can be rather sweet and full-bodied.

Although Achel is authentic Trappist, it drinks more like an Abby. It has a rich chocolate/munich malt character and aromas with a lingering sweetness. Very smooth tasting with a medium-heavy mouthfeel throughout.

I bought an 11.2oz bottle at Red Spirits & Wine AND BEER! on January 19, 2015. The date on the bottle was July 16, 2014, making it 6 months old.

I can't fault this beer to style. I tend to like my Belgian Strongs a bit drier, but this was very easy to drink and enjoyable. Worth a try!

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Photo of Bowdoinbeerboy
3.57/5  rDev -13.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured with a huge two finger head with great retention, after 10 or 15 minutes, this head was still sticking around! The beer is a muddy brown color, fairly opaque and not possible to see through. The nose is hard to discern, very subtle, but I do get candied fruit and some very dark, very sweet malt. The beer is not nearly as sweet tasting as the nose would suggest, it is very malty, and a lovely thick mouthfeel. The taste starts off with lots of sweet and dark sugars, gets a bit sweeter, and then finises with a fairly nice malt body.

I have to be honest, I do not particularly like this beer. It is a decent representation of the style, but far from something I would buy again, especially at the price this beer goes for (about $6 a bottle).

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Photo of beergoot
3.68/5  rDev -10.7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Bottle label data: 05/11/15 (best-by date?) 05KM 13 10 (?)

The body appears hazy with a orange and brown hue; head is thick. Sweet malt aroma with a touch of musty, over-ripe fruit scents. Tart and phenolic edge to an otherwise slightly heavy malt sweetness; some alcohol burn; mildly bitter. Heavy body with a lively carbonation.

The bottle gushed when opened (it wasn't shaken or disturbed prior to opening), but got most of the bottle poured into the glass. The overall lasting impression was of the boozy burn and phenolic character. Some decent caramel malt flavor and feel were evident, along with a ripe fruit tone, but ultimately the beer seemed a bit out of balance and thin in the depth department. Not bad but hardly stunning.

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Photo of JoeAmerican77
4/5  rDev -2.9%

Purchased from Camp Hansen Shoppette, Okinawa, Japan.

A - Pours a solid brown ale showcasing two fingers of creamy head

S - Malts, river water, and brown sugar on the nose

T - A deep, rich, mosaic of spice and bready malts, semi sweet with a dry backing

B - Full, warming, and chewy, with tons of small creamy carbonation

Overall not a bad Bruin I would appreciate a little more sweetness but it does the trick for what I wanted today.

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Photo of pat61
4.75/5  rDev +15.3%

Nose: wine and plum, some sweet malt.
Pours hazy chestnut under a rocky slowly dissipating 3” tan tinted white foam collar. Classic Belgian Window lace.
Palate: plum, fruit cake, caramel, toffee, rich with long lingering toffee flavors well into the finish. Some plum flavors in the finish. The hops are not huge but they are there providing balance. Moderately sweet.
Medium full body with above average carbonation, warming.

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Photo of Furlinator
4.1/5  rDev -0.5%

Pours murky brown. The huge two inch eggshell head remains as a thick cap on top and leaves thick strands of lace. There is visible floating sediment.

The smell is of grainy dark malt, faint spice, caramel, figs and raisins.

The taste is of grain, raisins, plums and molasses with just a hint of hop bitterness on the finish.

The texture is heavy bodied with medium carbonation.

A solid Belgian dubbel with malt, dark fruit and caramel flavors dominating. Those monks are doing it right.

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Photo of TheHammer
4.38/5  rDev +6.3%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4

Appearance: Poured with a solid finger and a half of head that retained masterfully, lacing is decent but not extreme and is the only thing keeping this one from a perfect score here. The body is a heavy brown that shows ample signs of carbonation, but not so opaque that you can't see the solid head being showcased.

Smell: I've noticed that figs seem to be a common theme with Dubbels, but thankfully this one does let them steal the show here. Rich, nutty, toffee malt dominates the nose as brown sugar, figs, plums with a hints of pear, cinnamon and the barest touch of charred wood make this one to remember. Warming helped it out a bit but not much, but that's fine as it's solid none the less.

Taste: Starts with that sweet toffee malt that's presently restrained by nutty almond and walnut tastes and the barest notes of spice. From there a mix of floral and earthy hops, a woodsy note and that odd fig takes over but comes across as presently subdued, as none of them seem capable of taking the spotlight.

Mouthfeel: Although the beer seems to transition too quickly, the fruity dry aftertaste of pear, raisin and sweet malt with the barest nutty hints leave me impressed, as does the ample carbonation that helps out the entire beer but not excessively so.

Drinkability: Ironically though, the carbonation is this beer's downfall as the high carbonation leaves this one a bit gassy. The dryness could be toned down a bit too, but the surreal smoothness and the masterful concealment of the high alcohol content certainly is more then enough to bring it into the positive category.

Final Thoughts: This one is probably my new Trappist beer king, and I think it gave my top picks a run for their money. For some reason I can see this going well wish fish, but realistically, this beer is awesome regardless. Even in the sweltering heat, nor the coldest winter night would not turn this down. Thumbs way up.

Edit: You can remove the probably, this beer is my highest ranked Trappist beer so far and my highest ranked Dubbel at this time. Hopefully that convinces you to try this one for yourself.

2nd Edit: And the title of best Trappist has fallen to Rochefort 8, still don't let that dissuade you from this one.

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Trappist Achel 8° Bruin from Brouwerij der St. Benedictusabdij de Achelse
92 out of 100 based on 429 ratings.