Triple Exultation | Eel River Brewing Co.

very good
183 Reviews
no score
Send samples
Triple ExultationTriple Exultation

Brewed by:
Eel River Brewing Co.
California, United States

Style: Old Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 9.70%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by mattmaples on 05-27-2006

For Trade:
User Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters
first ← prev | 1-25 | 26-50 | 51-75  | nextlast
Reviews: 183 | Ratings: 324
Photo of Sammy
3.51/5  rDev -7.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Brownish colour with enormous off-white head that was bubbly and lacey. Funkey aroma. Brandyish taste, that was both a soft caramel mouthfeel but also sourish.Well, silly me. Thought it was going to be a triple Belgium and thought it was of. In fact, as an old ale well yes. And all me super-beer geeks did not also get it so I don't feel so bad.

 346 characters

Photo of GRG1313
3.36/5  rDev -11.3%
look: 2.5 | smell: 1.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Initially tasted February 2009 and didn't here review it. Initial impression: Dark red/brown with a thick white head; very light, almost nonexistent candy nose; thin body, lack of any distinguishing flavors; light malt; light hops; no real character. Not to try again.

HOWEVER, without realizing it, tried again today, 5/25/09 - much better - glad I tried again.

Dark amber brown with nice quick fading tan head. But, again, almost no nose - very plain and simple with just hints of malt-really no nose to speak of.

Flavors are actually pretty good this time around. Creamy mouth feel of wheat cereal with coffee and malt. Actually tastes like Wheatina with coffee which is different but pleasant. Big roasted wheat flavors. (While label indicates that the beer is certified organic, it is not identified as a wheat beer. Has the characteristic and taste, nonetheless.)

Very bold and long coffee finish. A beer where the grain used really comes through, which I think is a good think and a character that I liken to the issue of "terroir" with wine (i.e., wine tastes or has character of the soil; here, the beer really does have the character of the roasted grain).

Probably good with some BBQ or flavorful meats, maybe even a roasted chicken. My initial tasting of this beer was a big zero. This second tasting warrants the review and I'm glad I went back to it. Solid burnt grain character provides depth and interest.

 1,429 characters

Photo of UCLABrewN84
3.84/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

2014 vintage.

Pours a murky super dark crimson-orange with a foamy khaki head that settles to a partial film on top of the beer. Thick swaths of lace form around the glass on the drink down. Smell is of malt, caramel, toffee, and candied fruit aromas. Taste is much the same with toast, caramel, dark fruit, and earth flavors on the finish. There is a mild amount of toast and earth bitterness and an alcohol kick on the palate with each sip. This beer has a good level of carbonation with a crisp and dry mouthfeel. Overall, this is a pretty good beer that has a nice mix of caramel, fruit, and earth qualities all around.

Serving type: bottle.

 647 characters

Photo of metter98
3.62/5  rDev -4.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

On-tap at Rattle n' Hum, New York, NY

A: The beer is slightly hazy dark amber in color. It poured with a thin off white head that died down and left rings of bubbles around the edge of the glass and a thin collar on the surface.
S: There are sweet aromas of malts in the nose along with notes of molasses and hints of fruits. A moderate to a strong amount of alcohol is present.
T: The taste has flavors of alcohol along with some hints of alcohol and black currants. There is a light amount of bitterness and notes of alcohol persist through the finish.
M: It feels medium- to full-bodied on the palate and has a moderate amount of carbonation. There is a little alcohol burn in the finish. As the beer warms up, it also becomes a little syrupy.
O: This beer really tastes similar to an American Barleywine because it is quite hoppy for the style. It would have been nicer if the alcohol was better masked from the smell and taste.

 933 characters

Photo of brentk56
3.78/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: Pours a dark brown color with a nice tan head that holds its foam well and laces the glass

Smell: Boozy burnt caramel with some dark fruit and a surprising degree of bitter notes

Taste: Starts with a rich caramel flavor that generates some fruity notes, mid-palate; after the swallow, the alcohol shows up and joins with the bitter flavors, the finish is a bit rough

Mouthfeel: Medium to full body with moderate carbonation

Drinkability: I was expecting a bit more fruit and a bit less bitter flavor, frankly, but this is a decent enough Old Ale

 569 characters

Photo of Phyl21ca
3.75/5  rDev -1.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Bottle: Poured a murky brown color ale with a large foamy head with good retention and great lacing. Aroma of dry fruit with some nice sweet malt. Taste is also dominated by sweet barley malt with nice notes of dry fruit, some sugar and some lightly fruity ester. Body is quite full with some great carbonation and no apparent alcohol. Very well done with enough complexities but also keeping a nice drinkable profile.

 418 characters

Photo of zeff80
3.97/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Poured out a clear, dark copper/burgundy color with a one-finger, light brown head with some big bubbles. It left thin rings of lace on the glass.

S - It smelled of sweet, sweet malt with hints of booze. There were mild floral aromas.

T - It had a spicy kick upon first sip with some grassy bitterness. It was sweet with a burnt toast and caramel maltiness.

M - It was crisp, sharp and smooth. A medium to full-bodied ale with a dry finish.

D - This is a very nice old ale. A really good brew from Eel River.

 516 characters

Photo of nickfl
3.39/5  rDev -10.6%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A - Medium sized, light brown head with little lace. The body is medium amber-brown with decent clarity.

S - Raisins and alcohol with dark malt and caramel. There is just a hint of hops and a bit of chocolate as well.

T - Malty with lots of caramel and some chocolate. Moderate hop and malt bitterness in the finish.

M - Medium-thick body, moderate carbonation, and a slightly sweet finish.

D - Reasonably drinkable, but kind of a weak old ale. The aroma is quite nice, but the flavor really falls flat.

 507 characters

Photo of oberon
4/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured into a standard pint glass a clear rich deep amber with a little mahagony tint a larger creamy off white head atop that never totally subsided,a great mix of citric resiny hop and malty dark fruit and caramel in the nose after it warms a little a light sweet acohol note shows through as well.This is an American influenced old ale no doubt on the palate a big dose of piney citric hop really hits up front with some sweetich dark fruit and a even a little nuttiness in there as well just well balanced the alcohol does creep a little and you do feel it after a bit.Started out a little prickly in the mouth but it subsided after awhile,a very nice sipping brew I enjoyed it.

 682 characters

Photo of ChainGangGuy
3.38/5  rDev -10.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Appearance: Pours a hazy brown body with a wispy, cream-colored head.

Smell: Sweetish aroma of caramel malt with a touch of cocoa and strong notes of dark fruit. Hint of spice.

Taste: Mild caramel malt presence with a reserved sweetness. Juicy date fruitiness and more of that light chocolate quality from the aroma. A citric hoppy flavor grows throughout and leads to a profoundly bitter finish.

Mouthfeel: Medium-bodied. Moderate carbonation. Warming and has a slight stickiness to it.

Drinkability: With it's sharp, punchy bitterness, this one's definitely an Americanized old ale.

 588 characters

Photo of BuckeyeNation
2.9/5  rDev -23.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2

"Triple Exultation is the Ozzy Osbourne of Old Ales."

--Eel River website

"I got rabies shots for biting the head off a bat. That's okay, the bat had to get Ozzy shots."

--Ozzy Osbourne

Darkest cranberry red with bright tangerine edges. This beer, like all beer, looks best when backlit with sunshine. The upper third of the glass is occupied by a golden ecru colored cap that doesn't have much character. It's just tacky enough to lay down scattered sheets of sudsy lace.

Keeping in mind the considerable overlap between the two styles, the aroma is more American barleywine than old ale. Each sniff is rife with boozy cherries and assorted other fruit, none of it especially dark. In spite of the brewery's claim, it smells like significantly less than 'a ton of hops' is present.

Triple Exultation tastes like a first attempt at an old ale by a beginning brewer. It's far from horrible, but there's precious little depth and no complexity. On the other hand, there is plenty of alcohol. Harsh heat... not good.

The Ozzy Osbourne comparison was made because Eel River supposedly hopped this ale to an IBU count of 'about 100'. The beer is harshly bitter, but it's probably because malt sugars are so few and far between. Hop flavor is on the low end too. There will be no exultation from this reviewer.

Specifics include cherry cough syrup, bitter orange, a double shot of Jagermeister and a single shot of lower shelf vodka. Have I used the word 'harsh' yet? Somewhere around ten year's worth of aging would have been the way to go. If I had another bomber it wouldn't be opened until 2018.

Although the mouthfeel isn't bad, it's on the thin end of the style spectrum. It's also too carbonated, which is the kiss of death for any beer, especially beer of this style. My tongue feels like it has sipped its way through four fingers of 101-proof bourbon. The cheap stuff.

I expected Triple Exultation to be at least as good as Raven's Eye Imperial Stout, a beer that was mucho enjoyable. Instead, it's about the same level of quality as the rest of Eel River's lineup. In other words, it's average to below average and isn't worthy of a repeat purchase. Ozzy deserves to be compared to much better beer.

 2,214 characters

Photo of russpowell
3.93/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pours chestnut/brown with 3+ fingers of tan head. Good head retention & above average lacing

S: Cakeyness, dark fruit & some leafy hops

T: Cakeyness, leafy hops, brown sugar & a bit of piney hops up front. Plums & raisins, brown sugar, with minty & leafy hops, caramel & some dryness as this warms. Finishes dry with herbal & leafy hops, plus brown sugar. Almost pulled a 4.5

MF: Chewy with low carbonation, warming & skews hoppy

Drinks pretty good for the ABV & style. The hop mix isn't exactly my cup of tea, but a solid Old Ale all in all

 545 characters

Photo of mikesgroove
3.35/5  rDev -11.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A - Poured a very hazy dark brown, pretty much opaque. Very small head that faded almost instantly. Left behind a very nice lace all down the glass.

S - Very very strong alchol smell, soo much so that it pretty much drowned out all other scents. I let it warm up to almost room temp, at which point some subtle hints of hops were able to finally start to break their way through.

M & T - Taste was very hoppy, definaly is a bit young and could use some time to relax. Lots of alchol presence here really packed a big bite. Once you get past it the feel was actually quite smooth and creamy. Very nice feel. Again I really think it would improve with some aging. Right towards the end I finally sarted to pick up some of the more subtle hunts, with the most prominent being a nice raisin flavor.

D - This one definalty will pick up as time goes by. Just a bit too young still and this is really dampning some of the more subtle and complex tones that are definatly there. Will leave a few in the closet and come back in 6mos and try it again.

 1,052 characters

Photo of WVbeergeek
4.1/5  rDev +8.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Very much a high alcohol barleywine reminiscient of Bigfoot under the old ale title. This is a bit hoppier than your standard old ale. Dark ruby body with a thicket of khaki tan head, this thing pours pretty viscous for the color. Aroma has big earthy piney notes with big ripened fruits, plums, raisins, and tart apples. Malt sweetness is layered between caramelized sugars and toasted malts, with interwoven layers of big ripened fruit...more raisin, plums. You could definitely lay this big bruiser down and not worry about it's aging potential, you know this thing is going to get better. Mouthfeel is full bodied a bit tamer with hop bitterness than your average Bigfoot release, finishes balanced between hops and big malts. Moderate carbonation carries things extremely well, doesn't become cloying or harsh despite the big malt/hop action going on, highly excited to try this beer...much better than any other organic offering I've come across.

 952 characters

Photo of johnnnniee
4.18/5  rDev +10.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours a solid dark brown with beautiful ruby highlights. Thin bubbly off white head that leaves spotty lacing on the way down. Aroma of caramel, figs, sugar, and a bit of spicy hops, smells like it will be sweet. Taste of caramel and burnt sugar, followed by some spicy hop bitterness and a bit of roast. Finishes with a bit of alcohol and a lingering hop bitterness. Nice tasting old ale. Medium body with a crisp bite of carbonation. Great Old Ale! I wish I could get them here, I'd like to try more of their stuff.

 517 characters

Photo of jwc215
3.53/5  rDev -6.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

22 ounce bottle, poured into snifter:

Pours dark ruby with a thick head that settles to a lasting cover, leaving web-like lacing.

The smell is raw-ish alcohol, some fruitiness and some caramel.

The taste is of bitter leaves and fruitiness with boozy, though not too sharp, alcohol and caramel. There are plenty of hops - something I would normally be very pleased with (though I wonder if it is just too hoppy for the style), but they are leafy bitter and slightly metallic, though there is some citrus. Sweet malt comes through more as it progresses, but not in a particularly complex way.

This one has quite a bit of carbonation, giving an effervescent-like quality when I swirl it over my tongue. That gives it a certain creaminess but puts a bit of a dent in the full-bodied quality I would expect from the style.

Even after a 22 ounce bottle, I have some mixed feelings - began very drinkable, but didn't sustain enough depth and balance (too bitter) for the style. Even though alcohol is noticeable it's not too sharp. There is a metallic characteristic going on. Still, there's enough to it to make it be fine to sip on a 22-ouncer. I don't know that Old Ale would have come to mind, maybe a DIPA? But, it would have been in my first few guesses, I suppose. They tried to add a hoppy character to it while maintaining sweetness, I assume. Works well enough, but not to any great degree, IMO.

 1,403 characters

Photo of Billolick
4.12/5  rDev +8.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

22 oz. bottle, w/o bottling/freshness date, sampled in a tulip. Pours dark,dark cherry tinged amber, under a quick to thin dark tan cap, leaves ringed froth and leaves plenty of lace. Pungent nose of sweet smoke, dark cherry and layers of maple malt. Rich and tasty, notes of more cherry, bourbon, light smoke, rum soaked raisins, chocolate covered cherries, plenty of sweet malts, some alcohol. Quite dry with resiny hops late. Thicker, smooth mouth feel. a lot going on here, and its all good. Surely one of the better offerings among Eel River's organic lineup.* I would suspect that this one would improve with with 6+ months in the bottle to mellow a bit and to allow the flavors to mingle together.

 704 characters

Photo of Gavage
3.65/5  rDev -3.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance: cloudy dark reddish orange color with a 1" fluffy head that lasts. Nice lacing develops during the session.

Smell: caramel, brown sugar, and a hint of yeast.

Taste: caramel, hints of cocoa, pepper, red grapes, plums, and a bit of a earthy yeast flavor. Alcohol is noticeable and hearty bitterness brings the sweetness into check.

Mouthfeel: medium-heavy in body. Crisp throughout. Short aftertaste as the flavors linger in the mouth a bit.

Drinkability: decent overall beer worthy of a try. Slow sipping beer but alcohol creeps up on you.

 555 characters

Photo of LiquidAmber
3.95/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Review from 1/2010 notes. Poured into a Gulden Draak tulip. Pours a medium orange brown amber with a two finger light tan head with good retention and lacing. Aroma of bready and caramel malt, earthy with some nuttiness. Flavor is understated nutty, caramel malt up front with a big hit of alcohol and hops. Interesting spicy wood flavor middle and hop finish. Nice job. The alcohol is a little hot, but the flavor progression is good and malty. A nice old ale.

 461 characters

Photo of Wasatch
4.3/5  rDev +13.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured into a Westy glass a nice dark brown color, nice carbonation, nice little fizzy tannish head, not much sticky lacing at all. The nose is malty, with some dark fruits/dark chocolate notes. The taste is slightly sweet, malty, with dark/chocolate/fruit notes. Medium body, the alcohol is hidden pretty well with this one. Very drinkable, this is a very tasty brew, highly recommended.

 388 characters

Photo of WesWes
4.4/5  rDev +16.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

The beer pours a dark red/brown color with a thick frothy tan head that slowly fades to lacing. The aroma is good. It has a very nice, warm burnt toffee scent along with roasted, almost raisiny aroma. The taste is awesome. It has a super smooth, malty flavor that goes down with ease and finishes warm and dry. It has the most intense burnt toffee flavor I've ever encountered. The mouthfeel is perfect. It is a full bodied beer with just the right amount of CO2. This is an exceptional beer. I can't say enough about the malt character as well as the mouthfeel. It's incredibly drinkable for 9.7%.

 598 characters

Photo of DoubleJ
3.95/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

On-tap at Beachwood BBQ, on to the beer:

Very dark orange in color, it almost goes into brown territory. Head retention is good, and there's some pretty lacing left in the glass. Sweet and resiny in the nose. Sweet caramel, burnt sugar, and tropical fruits to smell, with a little astringent grain. Very intense in the mouth....enough resiny hops to go around, yet you still get a lot of malt flavor to remind you that this is an old ale first. Lots of residual sugars, alomg with pineapple, tropical flavors, toffee, and hops. As the beer dries around your lips, it gets very sticky....I like sticky. It's a heavy beer, but I didn't expect the ABV to be at 9.7% beacuse I couldn't taste much of it.

An old ale that goes up to 100 IBU's? That's crazy. Eel River manages to pull it off without creating a mess.

 812 characters

Photo of Mora2000
3.68/5  rDev -2.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

The beer pours a dark, brick red color with a white head. The aroma is fairly sweet. I get some molasses notes as well as some dark fruit. There is also some sherry, alcohol and caramel malt thrown in. The flavor is full of alcohol and brown sugar, with a little bit of dark fruit (mainly cherries, grapes, dates and raisins). There is also a strong, sweet malt backbone as well as a little bit of resinous pine. A big, flavorful and alcoholic American Barleywine that is fairly easy to drink, but I wish it came in a 12 ounce bottle. Medium mouthfeel and medium carbonation.

 575 characters

Photo of Gueuzedude
3.7/5  rDev -2.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Sampled on tap at 1702, Tucson AZ
This beer arrives, too cold, but at least in a room temperature tulip glass, with a frothy, finger-and-a-half thick head that comes up to the rim of the glass. The head is a pale tan color and the beer is a dark amber, brown color that shows a fairly opaque, lighter amber color when held up to the light. This smells rich and malty with an almost bourbon like back-note / alcohol spiciness to it. Concentrated, toasted, not quite roasted caramel malts play a big role in the nose. Dark fruit notes of concentrated raisins and a touch of prune couple with a browned toffee and brown sugar like character. This has quite a hoppy edge to it as well that can't quite hide behind the malt character; aromas of pine, some herbal character and a hint of citrus character are definitely noticeable as well.

The flavor has a rich, toasted malt character to it that is quickly balanced by a fair amount of hop character that provides a pine like bite, some herbal notes and a lingering bitterness. The flavor is more malt focused than hop oriented, but the hops certainly don't play second fiddle here. While I like that the dominant crystal malt character has a toasted, fairly grain oriented edge to it (along with the caramelized grain notes that are more typical), it still seems a bit too dominant here. The beer is actually pretty sweet as well, this is mostly perceived up front though as the beer finishes with a nice, biting hoppiness that really helps to provide a bit of drying character in the finish. A touch of sweet citrus peel character seems to peek through at times, though the herbal and pine notes from the hops are definitely a bit more prominent. The body is definitely pretty rich; this is most definitely a sipping beer.

As the beer warms up some hemp like aromatic notes start to become noticeable in the nose. The flavor too becomes a bit more balanced between the malt and hop character. In fact the hop notes get quite a bit more aggressive, with quite a sharp, herbal edge to it as the beer warms up. The malt picks up a hint of roasty character as it warms up as well, though this is pretty subtle. This ends up being a nice beer to be drinking in the colder months of the year. The rich malt plays the leading role, but it ends up being nicely balanced out by a biting hop character. Despite this balance, the beer ends up not as well integrated as I would prefer. Not bad, but it could be beer; perhaps a bit of age might help with this.

 2,496 characters

Photo of flagmantho
3.91/5  rDev +3.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from 22oz bottle into a pint glass.

Appearance: deep, rich amber hue with a large amount of haze and two thick fingers of rich, creamy tan foam. Retention is good. For some reason I find this a very pleasing-looking beer.

Smell: rich malty aroma with an alcohol tinge. Not bad, but not particularly complex.

Taste: big malty flavor with a suitably thick dankness. A musty dustiness includes big dark fruit flavors like raisins and plums, along with a bit of dried tobacco. The alcohol bite is pretty unrelenting, though. Bitterness is relatively strong toward the end, but hop flavors are not really present. Overall, a good tasting and complex old ale.

Mouthfeel: big body with a decent level of carbonation. Creaminess is pretty nice, though not over-the-top.

Overall: quite a tasty brew. There's a pretty big alcohol bite along with the strong bitterness toward the end, so it's not hugely drinkable, per se. Still, a good sipper on this, a cold snowy day.

 972 characters

first ← prev | 1-25 | 26-50 | 51-75  | nextlast
Triple Exultation from Eel River Brewing Co.
3.79 out of 5 based on 324 ratings.
  • About Us

    Your go-to website for beer (since 1996), publishers of BeerAdvocate magazine (since 2006) and hosts of world-class beer events (since 2003). Respect Beer.
  • BeerAdvocate Microbrew Invitational

    Join us June 2-3, 2017 in Boston, Mass. for beer, cider, mead, kombucha and sake from over 70 small producers.

    Learn More
  • Subscribe to BeerAdvocate Magazine

    No fake news here. Get real beer content delivered to your doorstep every month.