Belgian Tripel | The Defiant Brewing Company

very good
49 Reviews
Belgian TripelBelgian Tripel

Brewed by:
The Defiant Brewing Company
New York, United States

Style: Tripel

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 9.00%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by Sammy on 06-01-2008

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Reviews: 49 | Ratings: 126
Photo of brentk56
4.06/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Appearance: Pours a clear golden color with a massive head; the head retains well and leaves sheets of lace

Smell: Pale malt with a floral, grassy hop character; hints of bubblegum and thyme

Taste: Fruity elements lead off the flavor parade, with banana, apple, pear and lemongrass tones; bu mid-palate, grassy hops and herbal spices (white pepper, thyme and coriander) add balance; after the swallow, hints of bubblegum and candi sugar add some sweetness and a slight hint of alcohol appears in the finish

Mouthfeel: Medium body with moderate to high carbonation

Drinkability: Criticism by other reviewers that this is not to style are not unreasonable; call is a Saison or a BSPA if you prefer, but I really like the complexity and subtle flavor elements that this beer displays

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Photo of BeerdedEric
1.85/5  rDev -52.8%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 1

Before I even open it, it has a corkscrew type bottle. Reminds me of a champagne bottle. What a bitch it is to open! The cork screw has its cool logo on it, Defiant.

Appearance: A very smooth bubbly head that is pure white. The beer itself is a light yellow color. Bubbles look more spaced out but very present. The head sticks around for a while.

Aroma: very spicy hops are pronounced at first smell. It has somewhat of a boozy aroma. It does have ale characteristics to it.

Mouth Feel: quite bubbly with carbonation. Leaves a very dry taste in my mouth as if I was drinking a red wine.

Taste: at first sip a somewhat metallic taste. A very strong dry hop flavor that's bitter with spices. I don't know if I like it... No I found out I really don't. With each sip, I feel nausea coming on. It reminds me of a horrible champagne.

Drink Ability: very low. I'm struggling with getting through one third of it. Its very filling...

On the back it says, "We are always happy to have visitors." I'd be happy to be in bussiness with a crappy Ale like this. I feel horrible for pouring it out because its beer but yuck! I can't finish it! The only cool thing about this beer is

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Photo of tdawgydog
4.08/5  rDev +4.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Picked this up on my last trip to halftime. Supporting local NY brewers. Excellent representation of this Belgian style. One of the better us Micro brewed triples that I have had.

A: it's bottle conditioned which means that there is plenty of healthy goodness at the bottom of the bottle. Pours cloudy golden in color with extra "taste" at the bottom of the bottle.

S: not a ton of scent, maybe a little fruity but I don't enjoy a beer because of it's smell anyway.

T: Sweet and to the point. a true representation of this style, very well done.

D: goes down smooth. Hard to believe this carries a 9% abv.

M: perfect body and carbonation, one of the better beers that I've had in quite some time.

This beer has warranted a trip to the Defiant brewery which is only abbot 35 min. From my house. Looking forward to it.

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Photo of Naugros
3.77/5  rDev -3.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Really pale and cloudy. I'd describe as maize if I had a box of Crayola crayons. The best part about this beer's appearance is the amazing head it raises and maintains for a lifetime (or at least until you drink it). It starts off thick and falls back into itself in the middle while the edges stick to the glass. Many heads have been described as meringue-like but this is so much like a true meringue in texture and movement. Even the lace left behind looks like the meringue stuck to the plate after having a slice of key lime pie.

The smell is a bit funky, so you know they used Belgian yeast. The lemon, banana and cloves also give that away. There's even a bit of acidic bite in your nose, so I'm expecting a bit of sour tang in the taste. Did they infect this beer? I'll need to look it up after I finish reviewing it.

Yep, it's got some sour to it...lemony sour to be exact. My wife was completely taken by surprise by that (if only she had been reading my review as I wrote it). She doesn't like sour. There's also a metallic bite that I think comes from the alcohol. This takes away from the sour, but that flaw gets washed out by gritty malts and some floral hops in the back and the finish. Still, the flavors don't mesh well and it's a bit of a mess. The mouthfeel keeps changing from sour to biting to gritty. It's an adventure and one that will leave you with a headache for sure. Yet, I still like this beer and I am certainly willing to try more that this brewery has to offer.

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Photo of Mora2000
3.88/5  rDev -1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks to Nellie for sharing this bottle.

The beer pours a yellow color with a white head. The aroma is wheat with some yeast, lemons and salt. The flavor is some fruit (lemons and oranges) as well as some yeast, wheat and alcohol. Medium mouthfeel and medium carbonation. Not too bad.

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Photo of ChainGangGuy
4.25/5  rDev +8.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Appearance: Pours down a clear, lightly-hued gold body with a tall, looming, white head.

Smell: Aroma of pils malt, perhaps a smidgen of wheat, with sweetish honey tones and an ambiguous tanginess. Pinch of spices. Sliced orchard fruits spritzed with alcohol. Even a couple pieces of individually-wrapped bubblegum.

Taste: A golden sweetness of emboldened pale barley and pilsner malts slathered in clover honey. A brief flirtation with some floral aspects, then, it's cut down by a spicy pairing of coriander and pepper. Fruity flavors of pear and McIntosh apples. Even some noted bubblegum carrying over from the nose. Minor bitterness. Sparse creaminess to the drying mouthfeel.

Mouthfeel: Medium-plus body. Medium carbonation. Mouthfeel has a faint stickiness to it.

Drinkability: A pleasant surprise. I mean, have you heard of Defiant Brewing? No, neither had I. But yet here I am enjoying a solid Belgian-style tripel from them. Delightful!

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Photo of dasenebler
4.14/5  rDev +5.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

From the 750mL bottle, this Tripel pours a clear, deep golden hue with a modest head. Good retention and lacing though.

Aroma is nice and pungent, with notes of strawberry, apricot, caramel, alcohol and a bit of funk, actually.

The flavor is very complex. There is sweet, ripe fruit flavor that seems to hit first, but this is countered by a rindy, almost brett-like bitterness and tart, dry finish. Has some Saison-like characteristics with the acidity, and also the woody, spicy and peppery notes. Doughy malt sweetness. Pretty decent amount of hop flavor as well. Kind of intense and bitter for a Tripel, but I dig it. The mouthfeel was chewy, but the carbonation was low, maybe too low for the style, I feel.

Satisfying, if somewhat untrue to style. With the huge flavors and noticeable alcohol, I would take my time with this one.

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Photo of gory4d
3.9/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

This is a nice enough interpretation of the style. The head is voluminous and white. The smell is toffee, straw, tree bark, maple sugar, herbal funk. The taste is maple syrup diluted in black tea, tannic bitterness, a little milkfat, wood sorrel sourness in the finish. It's thick but not meaty, well carbonated. Rather big and chewy to drink easily, but enjoyable nonetheless.

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Photo of mentor
2.19/5  rDev -44.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 2

Pours a five finger head over a hazed light straw liquid. Smells brettanomyces. Woody dry with mild cherry, powdery mildew, and sour berry.

Tastes malt on the pull, but brett off-putting immediately afterward and throughout the duration. Woody, biscuit malt, bready, ginger zip, mildly of candi-sugar, powdery dry and sour from brett. Peppery zip at the finish accompanied by a tame and clean alcohol and a fine carb sting. I'm not at all fond of this beer at all. Md light body with strong and fine carbonation.

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Photo of biegaman
4.33/5  rDev +10.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

The brewery may be situated in New York state, but Defiant has earned the right to call this a 'Belgian' Tripel. The colour is a toasty golden, its light pressed haze lending it an organic and unrefined complexion. Its head is huge, spongy and patterned like honeycomb, it leaves a shroud of lacing so dense you can't see your finger on the other side.

Furthermore, the aroma is ripe with fragrant 'Belgian-esque' scents: yeasty spices resembling a mixture of thyme, coriander and white pepper as well as an ambrosial incense of orchard fruit (pears, apples, peaches). The grainy smell of wheat and a toasty note of baked breads are also noted, creating a perfect backdrop for all the spice and savoriness.

And it tastes like a spring garden! Lovely. We are consuming the Eden's Garden with every sip. Once again, directly on the palate this time, we note spices (clove, coriander, thyme grains of paradise and varieties of edible flowers I don't know the names of) as well as pear, apple and peach spread out over biscuity, honey-coated malts. It can't be rushed.

The U.S. really ought to have their own distinction in the guidelines when it comes to brewing Belgian styles, Tripels especially. Most end up tasting (for whatever reason) entirely different and nowhere near so mellow or complex as the authentic stuff. This, however, is an exception and it is likely the best American rendition of the style I've tried.

With this beer, Defiant Brewing definitely succeeds in their mission to 'challenge the conventions of mass advertised and mass-produced beers'; this isn't anything that will appeal to ignorant masses beckoning conformity and the ideals of lifestyle imaging nor to those who resort to inexpensive, meaningless respite from the world and its cares.

This is a beer for artisans, intellectuals, gourmands, those who understand, appreciate and support the importance of craftsmanship and diversity, those with a heightened attentiveness to the world, who acknowledge human effort and ingenuity, who recognize that beer is an expression of so many natural, cultural, and personal particulars.

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Photo of mdfb79
3.53/5  rDev -9.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

From notes. Had on 3/6/10 at a local DC tasting.

a - Pours a pale yellow with no head and little carbonation. Sediment evident.

s - Smells like your typical Tripel; lots of yeast, spices, maybe a little citrus and pepper.

t - Follows the nose; yeast, pepper, tiny bit of citrus, some other spices. Not bad.

m - Light to medium body with little carbonation. Some alcohol warmth to it.

d - A decent tripel but nothing special. Some typical belgian yeast and spices smell and taste. Warmth from alcohol hurts it a little. Not bad but wouldn't actively seek out again.

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Photo of fragilemacabre
4.54/5  rDev +15.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

I have been trying to review this for a good twenty minutes, but I keep drinking the beer instead of analyzing it. Never fear, this is a good thing. A very, very good thing, especially considering the DIY-ish label scared me off from this beer for a good long while.

I wasn't sure what to expect when its thin gold color graced my pint glass, but it smells like happy Belgian times, tastes like happy Belgian times, and is eminently drinkable.

I can't stress enough how amazingly easy to imbibe this is. I want it around as my standby beer the way other people want PBR.

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Photo of ommegangpbr
4.48/5  rDev +14.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

As pain in the ass as this was to open I was hoping for a good beer.
Upon pouring, I was pretty sure I was going to like it. Upon tasting it I was very pleased.
Very pale and clear gold. An easy choice as a champagne replacement. Light, dry, yet spicy Belgian flavors on the nose. Not bold but pleasing. I could score the scent higher.
Dry, dry, dry on the palate. Again, could pass for champagne. Some apple notes, orange peel, and toast.
As a beer this is crazy easy to drink for something 9% strong. Pretty refreshing but still with a depth of flavor.
Yes. More, please. Thank you.

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Photo of njbcmatt
3.89/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 4

A - A little lighter than I expected, nice clear pale yellow though. Nice white foamy head that laced down the glass.

S - Delicious bready, malty aromas. Less alcohol presence than I'd expect from a 9%.

T - Where did that malt go? Ok, it opened up as it warmed slightly, but the tastes a bit more watery than I expected, a little unpleasant bitterness lingers behind.

M - Quick, clean, crisp. Sticks around a little more as it warms, improving the mouthfeel.

D - Very drinkable for a big, strong beer. True to style, but missing a little something I can't quite place.

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Photo of Jason
4.28/5  rDev +9.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

750ml brown magnum.

Pours out a pale golden colored brew, virtually crystal clear. Big towering white head leaves rings of lace on the glass. Smells of short bread, apricots, peppercorn, hint of bubble gum, lemon zest and a touch of clove. Very smooth with a deep set carbonation. Flavors comes in smacking of fresh cut granny smith apples, pancake batter, peppercorn, lemons, faint tropical fruit and a little herbal in the back. Alcohol shows its warmth with some estery action. Yeast stay neutral for the most part. Finished dry with a fruity spicy mix that lingers for a while.

Not the cleanest Triple around but probably one of the most complex while still staying it a delicate form. Seriously good beer here.

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Photo of Suds
3.58/5  rDev -8.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

This beer was a surprise gift from my wife. From a corked bottle, it pours a light, mostly clear, golden color with a tall white head. The retention could be a little better, and there's just a slight haze. Still, very attractive. The aroma is estery...bubblegum, a little spice, alcohol, sugar, and pale malt. The taste is fairly dry, with a decent warmth and belgian peppery phenols. Spicy, dry, and enjoyable. A decent beer.

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Photo of LilBeerDoctor
4.35/5  rDev +11%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Bottle. Pours a cloudy gold with a thick white head. Aroma of sweet fruits (particularly apple), sweet tarts, bubblegum, and lots of spices (clove and pepper). Flavor of sweet malt, some corn notes (tortilla chips?), and a sweet fruity and spicy finish (chiles?). Interesting for sure and super tasty. I really like this one! Solid triple, great beer. I really need to get more of this...

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Photo of mnj21655
3.88/5  rDev -1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

750 mL poured into an Orval chalice

Pours a slightly hazy yellow-gold color with a bit under a finger of white head. Citrus, some banana, and a good dose of spicy, peppery phenols. Taste is a bit more complex than the aroma. There is a soft malt character throughout. Citrus esters again dominate (lemon-zest is most prominent) but some very light pear and banana esters are also present. Phenols are again present but are a bit less prominent and more peppery than spicy. Mouthfeel is good with medium-light body and about high carbonation. Drinkability is ok. This beer while not simple or scattershot didn't seem to be quite as complex and well-rounded as I would expect from the style. That said it's not as if I didn't enjoy this beer, I just really wanted more.

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Photo of goatgoat
3.49/5  rDev -11%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Thanks to PEBKAC for the opportunity.

Poured into a Chimay goblet.

Pours a hazy slightly honeyed yellow. A finger's worth of creamy white head sticks around forever. Plenty of carbonation continues to rise. Large sheets of lace. Nice looking brew.

In the aroma, there's the classic tripel notes: banana, fruit, bread and spice. But they're muddled and not really fully formed...

Taste is more engaging than the aroma. Flavors characteristics separate out, becoming more complimentary and enjoyable.

Nice creamy light feel.

Not necessarily a brew I'd go out of my way to seek out again... but it's a solid, respectable effort.

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Photo of JVEyck309
3.66/5  rDev -6.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

25.4 oz bottle conditioned bomber corked and caged poured into a tulip

A- HUGE head even after a very slow pour, climbing out of the glass and never really diminishing. Its an opaque dark and hazy golden orange.

S- citrus and lemon, my nose has been stuffed up though... some pepper in there too

T- banana cloves pepper lemon and for some reason I keep thinking apples.. reminds me of a more crisp and alcoholic hefeweizen. Alcohol is warming and not so well disguised

M- pretty full mouthfeel which was a bit unexpected for the style.. carbonation was good..enjoyable

Drinkability - This was a sipping beer, no need for another, warming alcohol (9%ABV) Not the best tripel but being that it is brewed locally (15 mins away from me!) I would proudly buy again. Happy to have this relatively new brewery so close to home!!

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Photo of brewandbbq
4/5  rDev +2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

750ml corked and caged, unlabeled bottle courtesy BA EPSeja at BCTC 2008. Thanks! Not sure if this is the standard "Triple" from Defiant or the "#3".

The cork wiggled itself most of the way out before removal. A loud pop and an extremely carefull, slanted pour released over five inches of spongy, white foam.
The porous head settled quickly to a partial skim coat and plenty of dotted lacework. The body is perfectly clear and golden.

Aromatics lead off with bright citrus notes, bannana, cloves, and lightly husky malt.
A bit earthy and phenolic, with hints of bubblegum and lemon zest following through.

Light bodied and very crisp. Highly snappy, with a mildly creamy mouthfeel in the finish.

Light malt, zesty citrus fruit, and honey-drizzled lemon start the palate. Hints of lemongrass, crushed mint, white pepper and coriander follow through.

Finishes with light malt, earthy hops, and warming alcohol.

Plenty fresh with an abundance of noble hops.

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Photo of Nickls
3.58/5  rDev -8.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

(From notes)

A - Light hazy gold color, with a thin white head. Nothing off par for the style

S - Citruisy and spicey aromas, that are more lemon-like than anything

T - The citrus notes, and a heavier banana flavor come through. A bit more like a German wheat than a triple in taste. It wasn't bad, but not what I would expect from the style.

M - Would expect it to be a bit more crisp and pop with the carbonation. Pretty full MF for the style

D - Not overly drinkable, as it was not as complex as a Triple or as refreshing as a Wit or even Weiss.

Overall, I didn't think this was the best interpretation of the style. Not a terrible brew, but nothing too great either.

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Photo of Billolick
3.55/5  rDev -9.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

From a Growler (thanks for the gift Pebcak) Pours cloudy, dull apricot amber, under a minor near white, tiny bubble film/head that leaves just a slight amount of spotty lace. Minor fruity nose, with a hint of light pepper. Seems to be on the low side of the carbonation scale. Not really to style in that regard. Notes of light pepper, Belgiany yeast and ripe fruit. Spiced up hops dry thing out in the finish. Not bad stuff, but nothing truely special going on here, seems more like a saison or wit beer to me. Doesn't really show the sizzle and flavorful snap of a Triple...

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Photo of Sammy
4.02/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Enjoyed at Mondial 2008. Yeasty aroma, its like a geuze in appearance and carbonation with cloudy yellow and small white head. Above average mouthfeel, some lemon taste.All of this imparts a light bitterness, some candy sugar and otherwise good malting. Lovely on a Summer day.A natural; carbonation. Unknown ABV but seems to be in 8-9% range.

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Belgian Tripel from The Defiant Brewing Company
3.92 out of 5 based on 126 ratings.
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