White Birch Tripel | White Birch Brewing

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White Birch TripelWhite Birch Tripel

Brewed by:
White Birch Brewing
New Hampshire, United States

Style: Tripel

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 10.50%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
A slightly hazy golden colored brew. We used a combination of noble hops to bring in earthy and light citric hop notes. Belgian yeast notes, light spicy flavors, soft lightly sweet malts and a crisp dry finish. This is a favorite recipe and one that we’ve enjoyed cellared for up to two years.

Added by barleywinebrewer on 09-15-2009

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Reviews: 48 | Ratings: 70
Photo of ColForbin
1.05/5  rDev -70.2%
look: 1 | smell: 1 | taste: 1 | feel: 1.5 | overall: 1

Had a sample of this at a beer club meeting last night. Batch 3.

Quite possibly the worst beer I have ever tasted. Poured a slightly cloudy off-white, almost like dirty dishwater. Didn't look anything like a tripel should look, in fact it didn't look anything like a beer should look. Terrible aroma, probably infected, burnt plastic and the bad kind of barnyard funk. Taste is more of the same and therefore undrinkable. Among the 12 or so people no one liked it, and no one could even finish their sample.

To make the point even more strongly: the theme of the meeting was cellaring/oxidation. As an example of the bad kind of oxidation, the club pres brought in some 4 year old Corona Light. It was skunked and terrible (as could be expected). But I would drink it all day before touching this tripel again.

I normally wouldn't post a review of an obviously infected beer, but for something that sells in limited batches at a premium price people should stay far far away from this one. Buy the world class Allagash Tripel for $1 less and drink that instead.

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Photo of yourefragile
1.6/5  rDev -54.5%
look: 2 | smell: 1.25 | taste: 1.75 | feel: 1.25 | overall: 1.75

Bottled July 27, 2010, batch 3, 22 oz bottle.

Pop the cap and foam quickly gushes from bottle. Pours a sickly, pale straw golden color with a thick, but quickly dissipating bone white head. Slightly sour nose of band aids and white board cleaner with a touch of spice and peach syrup. Flavor of bubblegum, pear, banana and white pepper, finish is extremely anti septic and slightly tangy. Over carbonated, fluffy buddy, plain awful aftertaste.

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1.68/5  rDev -52.3%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 1 | overall: 1

Bomber to tulip. Batch 3, bottled July 27th, 2010, number 220 of 234.

A: Pours with a bright white foamy/creamy head of 2 1/2 fingers. Decent retention. The body is pale straw in color and heavily cloudy. Lacing is between good and excellent. Despite the cloudiness of this Tripel, the appearance was pretty good.

S: Yeast dominant aromas of must and barnyard with light lactic tones come through on the nose giving the impression of forthcoming sourness. Lightly malted with notes of hay and light candi sugar. Hop aromas include more lemon than orange but again, very faint.

T: A heavy, untamed alcohol presence is noticeable immediately. The rest of the flavor profile COULD be decent if the vodka-like heat wasn't so omnipresent. There is a big vanilla component (with possible oaky notes, unless it is merely an extension from the vanilla) mixed with light ginger and coconut flesh flavor. Unfortunately the intensity of the heat ruins the palatability and the bottom half of the bottle finds its way to the drain.

M: Medium body with extreme alcoholic heat and texture. Moderately sweet from front to mid-palate. Chalky and dry on the finish. Heat erupts from the gullet up leaving an extremely unpleasant aftertaste. My bottle indicates 10.8% ABV instead of the 10.5% listed here. So that means to me, that the heat was either accidental OR someone thought this brew needed to be even more abrasive. Hopefully the former is the case.

D: I tried but couldn't make it the whole way through this Molotov cocktail. I have heard some very good things about this brewery. Unfortunately, I'm turned off after my first couple of experiences.

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Photo of craytonic
2.13/5  rDev -39.5%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 2

This brewery is 0 and 2 for me. Bottle 192/234 Batch 3.

Appearance: Very, very cloudy straw-golden-yellow with a small white head

Aroma: bit off, some citrus and lemons; some sort of weird funk. I don't think I like their yeast strain.

Taste: also a bit off and a bit sweet; earthiness to it but more like a compost pile I think. Like a weird saison/tripel combo.

Mouthfeel: Light-medium body

Drinkability: Didn't finish the bottle; was not crazy about this one. Strongly disliked is a better description.

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Photo of sholland119
2.75/5  rDev -21.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2

Batch 3.

A-Pours a cloudy pale straw yellow. Plentiful, frothy white head still leaves some good lacing.

S-Is this supposed to be bretted? Don't know but there seems to be a hint of bretty white pepper. Not really much else going on.

T-A very un-tripel like flavor. A bit of odd funkiness, a must grape note, some Belgian yeast and an almost bleach like undertone. Sanitizer-y? Not a big fan.

M-Light to medium body, good carbonation.

D-No, not really. There is an off flavor or something going on here. Gonna have to pour it out.


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Photo of mvanaskie13
2.86/5  rDev -18.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Poured into a chalice, presented with a very nice thick off white head, color is dense straw to gold with nice effervescence.

Smell is off yeast flavor, somewhat hot and spicy in a weird way; mild fruitiness.

Taste is very hot burning, flavors do not come through nicely; hints of all of the flavors are there, some spice, and yeast and fruitiness, but it seems out of wack and not pleasant or smooth.

Mouthfeel is very strong on the tongue, almost burning, must be the hot alcohol coming through, again not pleasant or smooth.

Overall, a subpar tripel, off flavors and very strong unpleasant mouthfeel.

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Photo of tigg924
2.92/5  rDev -17%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

Appearance: 1 head, gold in color, hazy, high carbonation

Smell: Belgian spices and hay

Taste: Belgian spices, tropical fruit, hay, and an alcohol-medicinal finish

Mouthfeel: high carbonation, light bodied, sweet with a bitter middle and a sour end

Overall: This makes an excellent cooking beer, but I would probably pass on drinking it straight again. The beginning was a nice mix of bitter and tropical fruit, yet the end lost me. The finish was a bit high on sourness and alcohol. I could see myself wanting more if the end was not as harsh, but for now this is a pass.

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Photo of tempest
2.94/5  rDev -16.5%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Split a bomber with a friend at the Trapp Door in Emmaus PA. The menu said oak-aged, but the label did not. Thanks guys.

Anyways, I was struck by an undeniable ham aroma upon pouring the beer. Seriously, it smelled like sweet, cured ham from a butcher. There was also a sharp spice and citrus note, but the beer was also hot. I was surprised to see that this was bottled in January 2011 (10 months ago) and that it still needed time to smooth out. It reminded me a of a less balanced version of North Coast's Pranqster. Avoid unless you find a real old bottle.

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Photo of mavbrew
3/5  rDev -14.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Bottled 4/27/10, Batch 1 #338 of 552

A: Pours a cloudy pale/straw yellow with a finger thick white head and some lacing down the side of the glass.

S: Has a yeasty scent with some citrus and earthy tones to it.

T: The main taste up front for me is that of yeast, it's a little too "yeasty" for my liking. Also present is some citrus and wheat, very earthy and malty tasting. Finishes pretty dry.

M: Light to medium bodied with a slight bit of carbonation.

D: Nothing against the beer itself but I could not drink this too much. I'm not a huge fan of Belgian beers to begin with (only really enjoy a few but am starting to come around, slowly) but this beer has too much of a "yeasty" taste for me to enjoy.

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Photo of GPHarris
3.01/5  rDev -14.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 2 | overall: 2.75

bottled May 23, 2010

a - poured a three fingers thick off-white head into a tulip glass that left good sheeting throughout. the body was a bubbly gold color. i would have liked a brighter color and some lacing with this.
s - apples and pears with a hint of belgian yeast.
t - same as aroma with a little graininess.
m - thin, carbonation not very lively.
o - has potential but really missing the things that make tripels special.

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Photo of Gobzilla
3.17/5  rDev -9.9%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Poured a pale straw yellow (wit looking) with a thin head and left almost no lacing saticking to the glass. The beer was hardly a tripel on the nose with citrus, herbs, earthiness, and malts but lacking spices and good belgian yeast aromas. The fruitiness was also super faint. Like the nose the flavor was hardly a tripel with not much apples or yeasty characteristics but was tasting like a saison consisting of citrus, earthy notes, coriander, and herbs. The brew was medium body with a low amount of carbonation which had a slight sweet, earthy, and bitter finish. It drank pretty good but honstly didn't tickle my pickle as far as tripel go. It probably should have been labeled a farmhouse style beer IMO.

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Photo of Brad007
3.28/5  rDev -6.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Pours a cloudy golden orange color with a one-finger head into my glass. Very good color

Citrus and spicy yeast stand out in the nose. There is also a slight sour note.

Sweet and nearly cloying with citrus and spice as dominant flavors. A good dose of alcohol heat as well.

Citrus and spice/heat linger in the mouth. Come to think of it, it does seem kind of vinous.

This is probably not one of their best examples. One could age it at 9% but if there's no appeal in a fresh state, would there be any in an aged state?

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Photo of SFLpunk
3.36/5  rDev -4.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

22oz brown glass pry-top. Batch One, Jan 2011. 9.0% ABV.

Pours a hazy golden amber with HuGE sudsy white head.

Nose is strangely floral, almost soapy. Lavender? Palate is sharp, but is overly violet-y. Some faint spice and a prickle from the alcohol. Finish is dry and grainy.

Notes: Really strange for the style. Not sure what to do with this beer really. Looks like a million bucks, but the palate isn't for me.

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

Bomber bottled in Sprong 2013

A- Cloudy golden color with a nice white head. I suppose this is what a Belgian should be colored.

S - Spicy, belgian type aroma.

T - Pretty decent taste, crisp, sweet belgian flavor with some alcohol warmth.

M - Flavorful

O - Not crazy about belgian style beer but this one is not bad. I would recommend.

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Photo of pmlondrigan
3.4/5  rDev -3.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Kinda hazy looking for a triple, gold but opaque. Lacing it has, but a little over carbed. Could be more clear and rocky looking. Aromatically this beer has some nice citrusy esters and spice, lemon, but a strange hint of alcohol too. Pretty spicy and estery flavor. Coriander, black pepper, lemon. Basic malt biscuity malt. Hot from the alcohol.
This beer is dry, but also a tad hot from the alcohol. All in all there are many stronger examples of this style. That being said it is a hard style to brew and this is a fair attempt.

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Photo of gford217
3.42/5  rDev -2.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Bottle from rochefort10nh poured into a tulip.

Pours a cloudy golden yellow with a small, short-lived white head that recedes quickly to a tiny collar and leaves no lacing.

The aroma is sweet with fruity esters from the yeast and a bit of light citrus, lemons mainly. There is a sugary malt character in the background.

The taste is mild for a tripel with sugary sweet malts and fruity esters dominating - pears and green apples especially. There is not much in the way of spiciness that I would expect in the style.

The mouthfeel is medium bodied with low, soft carbonation. It's a bit too slick and undercarbonated for my liking.

This is a fair representation of the style but there's definitely nothing too memorable about it. Average.

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Photo of womencantsail
3.47/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A: The pour is a cloudy pale yellow color with a finger's worth of white head.

S: Sweet malt and candi sugar immediately present on the aroma with strong notes of citrus and spice. The spice contributions by the yeast seem to be pepper and coriander for the most part.

T: The flavor is also quite sweet with a sort of earthy flavor that seems out of place for a tripel. Citrus peel, coriander, bread, and yeast are present as well.

M: The body is on the light end of medium with the carbonation fitting a similar description.

D: This was more of a mix between a saison and a tripel, but seeming to lean toward saison. Not the biggest fan of this one.

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Photo of corby112
3.5/5  rDev -0.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Bomber courtesy of rpstevens. Thanks again man.

Pours a very hazy golden ripe banana color with pineapple juice hues and a 1.5 finger frothy white head that slowly settles into a lasting cap.

Slightly earthy aroma with a lot of peppery clove spice, bready yeast, citrus peel and light fruit from the estery Belgian yeast strain. Slightly tart and funky with a lot of earthy aroma that kind of outshines the fruit notes. Smells a lot like the Saison IMO.

Softly carbonated medium body with a prominent earthy funk presence that is slightly tart but not acidic. Spicy peppery clove notes with a healthy dose of thick bready yeast. Hints of peppery zest, lemon peel and grapefruit. Subtle light crisp estery fruit notes, mostly apple, pear and banana. The 10.9% ABV is very well masked with only the slightest bit of alcohol warmth. The spice character is very prominent and lasts throughout into a very dry finish.

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Photo of mdfb79
3.52/5  rDev 0%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

From 7/24/10 notes.

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

s - Smells of citrus, grass, wheat, and earthy tones.

t - Ttaste follows the nose; ctirus, wheat, earthy malts, but also seems a bit watered down. Little bit of spice as well.

m - Light to medium body and moderate carbonation.

d - An ok tripel. Lots of grassy/earthy malts to it, but enjoyable. Would try again.

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Photo of jale
3.55/5  rDev +0.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Many thanks to Greg for this. I have had this bottle for a year and just found it.

A: Pours a clear light yellow with a small amount of white head.

S: The first aroma I notice is sourness. Makes me think this is going to be a sour. Just a hint of hops and banana.

T: At first sip I pick up a sour with some barnyard funk. It lasts for a mere second and I think this is more the aroma than actual taste. A hint of sweetness moving into some lemon and pepper spice then a mild hop bitterness. The alcohol is well muted here and might be due to the fact I cellared this for a year.

M: Light body with great carbonation.

O: Not what I expected, but a solid beer.

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Photo of BobZ
3.55/5  rDev +0.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

22 Oz. Bottle poured into my Duvel Tulip.

Appearance: An interesting pinkish yellow, definitely pink, nice 1 " head initially that quickly receded to a ring. Decent lacing.

Smell: Very mild, a few hoppy notes, also a hint of spice.

Taste: Light but refreshing, had this beer outside at a cookout and generally found it pretty pleasant. Not really to the “sweet up front and bitter at the finish” tripel style. But this isn't a horrible thing. The beer was balanced nicely between sweet and bitter throughout. Frankly the flavors were not all that deep or complex, reminded me more of a summer ale. The alcohol was completely, and I mean completely masked.

Mouthfeel: Smooth on the palate, again refreshing.

Overall: Not exactly what I would expect in a Belgian Tripel, but a very enjoyable beer none-the -less.
Serving type: bottle

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Photo of jlindros
3.56/5  rDev +1.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This is a very early one for Bill, batch #3 from December 8, 2009, bottle # 74 of 88.

Large very fizzy and bubbly head like champagne rises up to about 80% of the glass and fades almost as quickly as I poured it, but too light to leave a nice Belgian fluffy head or lacing. The beer is very clear golden banana straw yellow colored.

The nose is pouring out with lots of wheat, malts, Belgian malts, a little banana, some citrus, plenty of Belgian yeast adding a bit of a funk to it, actually, as it warms it starts to get gym sock funky, but not in a wild ale way, and a bit of a musty almost ammonia aroma. A nice light effervescence too, with a light fruit, apple, pear, and a touch of spicy booze rounding it off.

Taste comes on strong with the Belgian yeast again, the only complaint I had about the white birch beers early on was the yeast was too strong and yeasty, and I think this is still from that strain. Lots of funky yeasty yeast. Some nice malts, not a lot of malt though, little wheat, some banana, light citrus, light fruits too, still a little pear, and some lemon. Theres some sweetness, not a lot, bringing a bit of booze out with a touch of warmth and tingle. Also more of the funk, a touch of gym sock funk but not Brett style, it's got it's own weird way. It finishes with a slight sticky feel, mostly dry though, with a touch of lingering funk and yeast, and some of the fruit, lemon and banana.

The mouth is lighter bodied with a huge carbonation effervescence.

It has a drinkability that is on two different ends. THe booze is not as heavy as expected for 10.9%, but it is definitely there. However, it has some of that funk and yeasty flavors that don't go as well as they could. But, it finishes a lot cleaner and smooth, and dry, with just a touch of sticky feel, so finishes well all things considered.

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Photo of mdaschaf
3.58/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Review from notes 2/5/11.

A: Pour a hazy light yellow with a very large head that dissipated quickly down to one finger of very fine bubbles.

S: Some wheat, banana, clove, and some belgian yeast.

T: Very similar to the aroma, but with the addition of bubblegum. Some spice, cloves, and a good amount of banana.

M/D: On the lighter side with lively carbonation. Can't really taste the alcohol, surprised that it is that high honestly.

It has a drinkability that is on two different ends. THe booze is not as heavy as expected for 10.9%, but it is definitely there. However, it has some of that funk and yeasty flavors that don't go as well as they could. But, it finishes a lot cleaner and smooth, and dry, with just a touch of sticky feel, so finishes well all things considered.

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Photo of drocpsu
3.59/5  rDev +2%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I purchased Batch 1 bottle #21 of 84 (bottled on 9/11/09) from Bert's Better Beers on 9/24/09. I opened it up and drank it on 10/11/09.

I hate to be the first non-glowing review of this beer, but I'm just giving my honest opinions.

This beer was poured at ~55 degrees into a tulip glass. There seemed to be very little carbonation and poured with almost no head. What little there was dissipated in a matter of seconds (the second glass had a slightly larger 1/2" head, so I think I could have been more vigorous the first time around). The color was a pale cloudy yellow that was somewhat off putting to me. It looked like watered down juice. I had to look at it a few times to make sure there wasn't anything wrong with the beer. Some lacing left on the glass as it went down, but not a lot.

The smell was fruity-sweet, but slightly earthy at the same time.

Taste was also started off sweetish with a little earthiness mixed in. It was on the dry side with a hint of alcohol, but overall, I thought the nearly 11% abv was very masked. This beer is deceivingly strong. However, there seemed to be some funk mixed in that I couldn't quite put a finger on. It wasn't necessarily bad, but had a flavor unlike any other tripel I've tried before. It just seemed a little out of character for the style to me.

Overall, I wouldn't call this a bad beer (though it seems like I'm the only person who would even call it mediocre). Maybe I had a bad bottle or maybe its just not the tripel for me. Either way, it certainly will not make me hesitate to try other white birch beers (or even this one again just to double check). Though I don't know him, Bill seems like a good guy and I'm 100% in favor of supporting a great new local brewery.

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Photo of philbe311
3.6/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Batch #3, Bottle #67/234

A - Two fingers worthy of delicate perfectly level pure white head... Modest retention gives way to a full rich creamy lacing... Exceedinly pale and hazy muted yellow straw color... A slight bit of moderate paced carbonation can be seen throughout...

S - The Belgian yeast strain dominates... There is also a slight spiciness and hint of pepper that cuts to the forefront... Pear... Apple... Unripened bananas... Wheat...

T -Sharp and intense from the get go... Belgian yeast and spices dominate... The subtletees of fruit get lost... A mix tart and spice on the finish... A slight aloholic heat and hint of pepper lingers... Missing are the layers of complexity that I enjoy in a Tripel...

M - Soft and smooth... Medium bodied... Turns dry on the finish... The follow through is tart and slightly puckering...

D - A mildly aggressive and rough around the edges Tripel... With so much competition and a high standard, this one misses the mark for the style... Not one I could recommend with good concious or one I would revisit in the future... Slightly less than the sum of its parts in terms of overall drinakbility...

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White Birch Tripel from White Birch Brewing
3.52 out of 5 based on 70 ratings.
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