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

Not Rated.
Trappist Achel 8° BruinTrappist Achel 8° Bruin

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
92
outstanding

723 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 723
Reviews: 409
rAvg: 4.13
pDev: 9.69%
Wants: 61
Gots: 63 | FT: 1
Brewed by:
Brouwerij der St. Benedictusabdij de Achelse visit their website
Belgium

Style | ABV
Dubbel |  8.00% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: zerk on 01-14-2003)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 723 | Reviews: 409 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of franksnbeans
4/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours murky dark brown. Huge creamy head that doesnt go anywhere. Looks absolutely delicious. Smells of faint fig, some caramel, toffee and spice, maybe rind. Very subtle smells that are slightly dissapointing compared to its looks. Tastes sweet at first but dies quickly. Dried fruit, caramel, chocolate. Feels full in the mouth but a vibrant tingle on the tongue from the carbonation is a little too much. Overall a delicious and great beer but falls a little short for a Monk mix. Great brew but if Im going to pay the Monk premium, I might look elsewhere...or pour my second.

Photo of BretSikkink
3.65/5  rDev -11.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

Great frothy sea foam head, off white topping a dark brown glass. Couple of fingers, good retention, and fantastic full coating of lace. Really great looking, appearance is impressive.

Nose, however, is lacking. Overripe fruit, strong Belgian yeast sort of spiciness. Just not strong enough to be credible.

Brown malt powers through the flavor, little bitterness although the hops drop in edgewise. There is a some clove or herbal thickness. It's not tart, and to me the flavor seems thin, and finishes a little dry. I found it quite agreeably creamy and nice in the mouthfeel, very plesent and full.

Drinkability is tough, because the alcohol is superbly hidden, and it's really a smooth ale. But I didn't really like the flavor enough to want another.

Photo of tpd975
4/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A: One of the most beautiful beers I have ever seen. It pours a murky creamy brown color. The head is monstrous. It is sooo large and fluffy kind of like whipped cream in appearance. It's like a large feather pillow as it comes to rest above the rim of my Affligem Chalice and leaves behind thick lacing. This baby reminds me of a root beer float. The head absolutely refuses to die. Magnificent.

S: Very subtle smells here. What I do smell is rising bread dough with a hint of sweetness and spice. It has the aroma of a wonderful sweet bread in the making.

T: This one starts of with a blast of malt; I taste slightly bitter nuts, and dark fruits. It finishes with some sweetness and hints of chocolate. Very nice.

M: Very Smooth and even Creamier. A full bodied and filling beer.

D: This is a very nice sipping beer, I enjoyed it greatly.

Overall: Another solid beer from those Monks in Belgium. This one is very pleasant and filling. It's a very solid example of a Dubbel. If you can find it buy it and give it a try. You won't be disappointed.

Photo of jdoolin
4.15/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Presentation: 33cL bottle, poured into my Achel chalice

Appearance: A dark garnet, clear as a gem, with a beautiful frothy tan head that lasted for the duration. Very good visual appeal.

Aroma: Bready yeast, with some fruitiness and a hint of spice.

Taste and Mouthfeel: Medium bodied with a not-quite creamy mouthfeel. The taste is wonderful. Just the right amount of sweetness. The bready yeast that was in the nose is also in the flavor, although not as prominent. A nice fruity flavor that runs neck and neck with the caramel like malt. The alcohol presence is very well hidden with only a slight warming effect. Some very nice hop flavor shows up at the finish.

Notes: Another great one from Achel. They bring out fruity esters so well, and both beers I've had from them were SO easy to drink. I wish I had gotten more than one bottle of this when I had the chance.

Photo of Shadman
4.22/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Medium brown, slightly hazy brew. Loads of fine bubbles support an amazing head..looks like a dollop of tan colored whipped cream still and this is 5 minutes after pouring it.

Aroma subtle, but quite pleasing. Hints of sweet caramel malt as well as lots of dried fruit..raisin, dates, etc.

Some hop sharpness( or maybe alcohol sharpness) in the front. Sweet, but not overly so. Malt is caramel, sweet, but not overpowering. The fruitness is subtle..date/raisin. Alcohol is present but not overpowering,but of a hoppy aftertaste. ,oh those sneaky Belgians and their complex flavors & skill at hiding ABV.

Nice mouthfeel, not overy chewy, but just a nice medium body.

Could certianly drink another one as the whole package is quite enjoyable. Was picturing German Soldiers occupying Belgium in the 40's getting fat, complacent, and drunk drinking brews like this. Thank You Belgium.

Photo of entheogen
4.22/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Huge epic light tan head that nearly cascaded over the glass rim twice. Even at the gentlest pour it foams up, and it took two pours to get the bottle into the glass; what can I say, I'm an amateur.

Lacing clings to the glass; even now, halfway down the glass is positively wreathed in it. The beer itself is a dark dark brick red.

S: Mostly malt and dark fruit, rimmed by pineapple (esters?) mildly spicy. Fresh "welch's" grape smell and leather as it begins to oxidize.

T/M: Very clean and flavorful. Warm alcohol only at the ending. The smell is a great indicator of flavor in this case. Taste has a higher yeastiness and a less sharp ester character than the smell. Very highly carbonated initially, as evidenced by the voluminous head... it settles down after a little while, and becomes very nice.

D: Clicked after about 1/2 of a bottle. I think I "got it" then, just after the carbonation started to settle down. I like to think of this as a gouden carolus classic, but far easier to drink.

Photo of markaberrant
3.48/5  rDev -15.7%
look: 5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Served in 20oz stemless red wine glass.

A - Gigantic head forms, it barely fits into the glass. Takes forever for the head to recede, there is still big sticky gobs and tons of lacing. Clear dark red colour.

S - raisins, a bit of malt, spicy esters. Not overly strong.

T - Sweet dark malt, warming spice, hops round out the finish. Originally gave it 3.5, but it is opening up as it warms in the glass.

M - Prickly finish and quite warming, too much in fact. Tons of carbonation. Gets better as it warms and carbonation lowers... begins to get creamy and brings out more flavour.

D - It's taking a while for me to come around to this one, but I'm not sure it is worth the wait.

I had the Blond a couple days ago, and thought it was fantastic, but this is a different story. This is just so-so... very little character. My original scores were very harsh, but it substantially improved towards the end of the glass.

Photo of mmcave
4.22/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

11.2 oz bottle purchased at Sam’s. No born on date just consume by date 28-06-08.
Chilled well, then let it sit about 5-7 minutes to warm. Poured vigorously into watou chalice, awesome two finger creamy white head develops with great retention and lacing. The body is a deep burgundy on the bottom, much darker plum color toward the surface. Smells of nice esters I get apple core, poached/ candied pear, rock candy, a hint of yeast sourness and a touch of spice.
Taste is malty and quite well shaped by bottle conditioning. I get all the same fruit esters in the taste as in the smell, plus a slight hint of yeasty goodness. Bitterness is at a minimum just enough to maintain balance with the malt and ester qualities. Drinkablilty is good on this yet again I wish I was drinking this with food. Honestly this is great on its own, but I can just imagine how good it would be with food? How great it would make the food. Great beer, solid for the style..

Photo of warmstorage
3.75/5  rDev -9.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

33cl bottle, 1,19 euro at a Brugges supermarket, states 8% ABV.

Pours a hazy medium brown, with a huge rocky beige head, leaving huge rocky chunky lace. Excellent.

Smell is yeasty and earthy, with backgrounded spices: cloves?

Taste is hot and spicy and sweet caramel, brown sugar, burnt sugar, slightly solventy, with indistinct spices.

Mouth is bright and sharp, highly carbonated.

Overall, to quote an unserious comedy about wine, it's quaffable, but far from transcendent.

Photo of bark
4.3/5  rDev +4.1%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

The beer is bottle conditioned; it is however quite easy to decant it properly. The colour is deep brown with a tint of red. The finger thick head is made of quite large pale beige bubbles. Lacing occurs.

The smell is very fruity (sweet apples, apricots, raisins, green grapes, cocktail cherries, fruit candy) with some lightly roasted malt and hints of sour wheat and fresh yeast.

The taste is fruity, too: Raisins, dried apricots, orange peels, cucumbers, dill and a hint of cherries. There are also dry notes of pickled herring, roasted dry malt - dry dark hints of porter and some sour notes of lime. The finish got a clean bitterness (a little like a German pils), dry dried fruits and a generous mildly sweet malty flavour. The aftertaste is complex and dry with some yeast, dried fruits, bitter oranges and some spicy herbs.

The liquid is not as thick as I had expected, it is a bit dry in the mouth and very fluent. The carbonation is strong with large, tickling bubbles.

A nice Belgian brun without the chocolate or sweetness. Dangerously drinkable!

Photo of BlackHaddock
3.38/5  rDev -18.2%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Brown 33cl bottle, best before Apr 2008, drank March 2007.

Poured into a Straffe hendrik chalice glass, well almost half was before the foaming head came to the top of my glass. Cloudy redish brown with a huge biege head, which stays for a long time.

Yeast and some hop aroma, toffee smell came as the beer warmed up, as did sour apples.

Bitter sweet taste, yeasty with a fizzy toffee-ish feel to it.

Aftertaste of the bitter sweet yeasty flavour hangs around.

The second pour was even more yeasty (the sediment came with the second pour) and cloudier of course.

Very drinkable, but a long way from the best Trappist beer i have had.

Photo of JanM
3.85/5  rDev -6.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured in a cloudy brown color and with lots of nice, hard foam to dive in. The smell was primarily of alcohol and yeast, very frutiy, and a whiff of detergent. Good carbonation. The taste was of dung, a lot of alcohol, yeast, caramel and sweet fruits. I was not overly impressed although the taste seemd to develop and improve after some time in the glass.

Photo of reinheitsgematt
3.85/5  rDev -6.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3.5

Having just delighted in the Achel 8 Blond, I wasn't entirely sure what to expect from the Achel 8 Brune. Perhaps I had sampled in the wrong order, I'm new to this. In any case, the Achel 8 Brune awaited.

It poured a crystallized ginger / light maple syrup with good carbonation. The head loomed above the liquid like a mile-high meringue that hasn't quite set. Fine lacing and a whipped character prove formidable.

Herbs and fruits awaken your nose; bouquet garni - rosemary, thyme, mint hide a hint of black raspberry. The subtle presence of aged cheese emerges.

Meaty and coating, fennel and damp earth play across my palate. The finish has a bit of heat without being overwhelming.

As usual, I preferred the Blond.

Photo of brdc
4.53/5  rDev +9.7%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Small bottle, label stating 03/05 which I assume is production date. Bought at Coffee Grounds in Eau Claire, 4.79 + tx.
I am not sure if I did not open this a bit too cold, since despite a beautiful mahogany color, the whitish head is very thin, although has some sticky lacing.
The smell is just fantastic; I have just put my nose into it now for the 20th time in the past 20 minutes, and every time I identify a new thing. It is heavily phenolic, as expected, but has roasted malts, some fruitiness, bread, sugar, molasses, caramel, coffee, and the list keeps growing. One more "sniff" and I notice caramel and toffee, and strong alcohol.
The body is medium to full, creamy but not heavy.
Taste is also very complex, and it seems that with every sip I also find something new. The first obvious taste is malts, heavy malts, mostly sweetish, with hints of caramel, sweet chocolate, but also some coffee, mild hoppiness and a powerful warming alcohol. It finishes mildly dry and warm. Adding the yeast to my last few sips added another different, pleasant yeasty taste.
Pleasant and fulfilling with a single glass, perhaps too strong and sweet for more than one, this is a very impressive beer, even more impressive than the first time I had it.
I will definitely get more of this despite the high price.

Photo of uberabr
4.43/5  rDev +7.3%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Big off-white, creamy, Guinness-like foam head that really sticks around and leaves a monster ring of lace. Cloudy, and color is a muted nutty, burnt brown that has some orange-red and maybe even grey hues. Cool, and weird.

Smell unique too- extremely spicey, phenolic, peppery, and estery. Cinnamon, apples, bananas, nuts, and pumpkin. Apricot and cranberries. A mild hop as well. Subtle and charming, but a little sharp.

Taste goes from sweet to sour and then rounds out with a delicious sweet aftertaste. Really excellent. The booze is warming but not hot or burning. Tastes of rasberries, cranberry and and plum on a banana-nut bread with butter. Maybe a little too buttery, although it would definitely improve with age. Tartness is just right- very mild. All in all a very unique Dubbel- this one is a black sheep-and one of the best I've ever had.

Photo of beerdrifter
4.6/5  rDev +11.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Pours a cloudy copper brown tea like color with a huge frothy light brown head and great lacing. Complex yet not overwhelming yeasty, malty nose with hints of carmel and plums. The 8 percent alcohol is very well hidden from start to finish. Malt and yeast flavors to start. The middle becomes very complex with hints of fruit, carmel and nuts. The finish is very tart and warming but highly drinkable.

Photo of norwichboy
4.4/5  rDev +6.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Not even the delicate pour of my froth-fearing spouse could control the gigantic meringue of a head this produced as we poured a couple of these into our Westmalle glasses. Below a slightly cloudy reddish brown. The monster head eventually settled to a thick and creamy centimetre which lasted through the duration of the drink, leaving glass-coating lace.

The aroma takes a little while to come through, initially just getting some wheat-like grainy aromas, but with fruit aromas emerging later: banana, apple, plum. The taste is quite sweet, with lots of apple peel, complemented by just the right level of carbonation for the style, giving this a lively mouthfeel. The alcohol is noticeable, but for 8% this manages to be an incredibly accessible and easy to drink Trappist ale.

A great beer - satisfying for beer tragics like me but I reckon it could also be a good crossover beer for Trappist firsttimers. Just make sure you pour carefully.

Photo of stereosforgeeks
4.33/5  rDev +4.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Appearance: Medium caramel colored body with huge head.

Smell: Roasted malts with hints of prunes and dates. Minor alcohol notes present.

Taste: Roasted malts comes through initially but the dates and prunes soon present themselves.

Mouthfeel: Very pleasant carbonation present throughout this creamy beverage. Lingering hops stay present after each sip.

Drinkability: This beer goes down smooth. I could easily enjoy a couple of these in a row.

Photo of OutlawJoseyWales
4.13/5  rDev 0%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

appearance: dark brown with reddish tints when held up to the light, tons of yeast (probably due to pouring too fast) and a nice creamy 1 1/4 inch head

taste: fruity, with a creamy malt taste, sweet, with hops in the background, raisin/plum, slight prickly alcohol at the end adds to the mouthfeel and taste well. has a light ice cream like creamy sweetness and viscosity in the mouth. Dates. sweet cake like flavor. almost like poundcake. wonderfully complex brew.

very nice beer. if not for the shoddy pouring job with tons of yeast floating around, it would be even better. this is the stereotypical complex rewarding belgian. get this!

Photo of Globetrotter
4.35/5  rDev +5.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Sampled at In 't Spinnekopke in Brussels, the beer poured a cloudy dark burgundy under a 1.5 finger tan head with excellent contour, leaving incredible craters as it fades. Sheets of lace cover the glass. The nose is mild and spicey, while the mouth is light and very prickly. The taste features sweet caramel and spicey coriander malt, very smooth and enjoyable. The hops are subdued, but emerge in the finish, leaving a slightly dry, slightly bitter impression. Very nice indeed.

Photo of dogfooddog
3.88/5  rDev -6.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

bottle bbd notched 02/07. I believe this is the first time I have had this particular achel beer. Pours into a chalice with a small light tan head; nose is of dark sweet slightly acidic fruits, not so malty as a normal dubbel.

taste is underwhelming, not so much of anything up front, the maltiness kicks in after a second, and you get some of the sweetness and a lingering taste of dark fruits into the finish. I am puzzled by the lack of initial taste in each swallow; my palate was fairly clean when I drank this.

Decent beer, for the style (dubbel/brune) very pleasant and one of my favorite in this category. I would certainly drink another, if I only had one...

Photo of kenito799
4.35/5  rDev +5.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

11.2 oz bottle, poured into a tulip glass. Best before date: 21 dec 2007.

Upon opening the bottle, foam arose out of the bottle, eager to leave its brown glass prison and be tasted. Gigantic, rocky light brown head over nearly opaque dark brown beer.

Soft malty aroma with some spice in there, belies the near perfect balance of the flavor.

I found the experience of this bottle to be a perfect expression of Belgian Brown/ Dubbel style--the best I have had so far. Soft, subtle, creamy malt but a lively crisp backbone that keeps the flavor fresh, alive, drinkable and prevents any cloying sensation. Would be easy to drink several...at $4 a bottle it's a tad more affordable than some trappists but it can't be my everyday beer, unfortunately.

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

Purchased in Leuven Belgium (Food Lion's affiliate) in January 2006, consumed 5 November 2006 in the USA.

Appearance-- pours a nice red-amber with profuse dense off-white head which lingers for a few minutes. Big chunks of yeast floating in the glass after only pouring about 60% of the bottle very carefully. The bottle had been sitting for many months, undisturbed.

Smell-- typical of a Belgian Trappist, with a nice floral-complex aroma, hints of smokiness, caramel and a light malty-liquor scent.

Taste-- very pleasing, some traditional-Belgian flat-hops florals taste, light caramel, apple, mild pepper in taste and lingering aftertaste. I don't think it even compares to the sacred Trappist Westvleteren 8 but it's still a very worthy Trappist. There's an occasional and very noteable whiff that I get from this beer that I can't quite identify-- possibly something akin to a new-mown hayfield but not quite.

Mouthfeel-- the peppery aftertaste detracted slightly from the taste, in my experience, but otherwise a nice light-smoke caramel hops-floral feel.

Drinkability-- depending on one's tolerance for 8%ABV, quite drinkable.

===
Reviewed again on 21 June 2010 from a bottle imported to the USA.

Bottle slightly aged and expired 6 months ago, nicely aging this beer.

This time poured with the last inch or so which contained all the yeast residue omitted.

A= murky medium brown, generously fluffy foamy off-white head with a Dairy Queen curl-twist on top from nice pouring. Profuse carbonation rising.

S= prune prune prune. After a few sips the gorgeous malts also began to emerge.

T= very bitter slurp from the foamy head but a nice sip of the fluid was much different. Very smooth, slightly creamy, nice malts, darker fruits (raisin, prune, maybe dark plum). Delicious, and little indication of the 8% ABV.

M= light sweetness, slightly nutty malts and evidence of the dark fruits lingering.

D= extremely drinkable, a good Belgian intro beer for almost any novice.

Photo of jcdiflorio
3.9/5  rDev -5.6%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured into a snifter,a dirty red,dark amber like color.No real head just a constiant white foam ring,with extra tiny bubbles stringing to the top of the glass.
A clean fruity aroma,with hints of apples,raisins,figs,a bit woody.Very complex aromas and inviting as well.
Tastes of green apples,fruity,caramelly,grassy a bit woody.
A very dry,but crisp finish that very complex.
The mouthfeel was silky,slightly cloying,but crisp and light with a mouthwatering dryness.
A sipping wine like drinkability,but I could sip on this for a good while.

Photo of objectivemonkey
4.35/5  rDev +5.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Into a St Bernardus goblet, pours dark brown with massive bubbly head, lacing holds up in a wall of foam, disintegrating into asymetric splotches. Also, nice little blots got stuck on the side. Aroma has a nice nutty yeast, sweetly malty, and almost vinous alcohol. A little more assertive give a higher score.

A slightly more than medium body, a carbonation that kind of tickles the tongue, pretty nice for the mouth. Taste is full on rich dubbel goodness. Malts are rich and well rounded, alcohol isn't shy and esters fruity, dark, a very nice taste and mouth, but at $5+ normally (though I got it for 3.49), probably one and done. I'll be getting the blondes for sure though.

Trappist Achel 8° Bruin from Brouwerij der St. Benedictusabdij de Achelse
92 out of 100 based on 723 ratings.