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Westmalle Trappist Tripel | Brouwerij Westmalle

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BA SCORE
95
world-class
1,716 Reviews
Westmalle Trappist TripelWestmalle Trappist Tripel
BEER INFO

Brewed by:
Brouwerij Westmalle
Belgium
trappistwestmalle.be

Style: Tripel

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 9.50%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by BeerAdvocate on 11-06-2000

BEER STATS
Reviews:
1,716
Ratings:
4,442
Avg:
4.28
pDev:
16.36%
 
 
Wants:
415
Gots:
808
For Trade:
5
View: Beers | Events
User Reviews
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Reviews: 1,716 | Ratings: 4,442
Photo of Nowhereman529
4.23/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This beer poured a very nice, hazy blonde color into the glass. It left a fairly large head which took a few minutes to dissipate.

At first I was not all that impressed with the smell, as it was a little skunky being cold right out of the fridge. But as this beer warmed to room temperature the natural aroma opened up into a spicy, nicely scented brew. It smells of a little clove, a little coriander and a background of fruit, maybe banana.

Taste is strong on alcohol and spiciness. There's also quite a bit of banana involved, it really is quite a remarkable beer. The flavors really work well together and make this one of the better tripels I've had the pleasure of tasting.

There's a high degree of carbonation in this one, almost champagne-like in mouthfeel. Keeps the beer very light.

I would definitely drink this again. It's a very tasty, well-balanced tripel. Would recommend to anyone with appreciation for good beer.

 933 characters

Photo of TJBurgess
3.7/5  rDev -13.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured out of an 11.2 oz bottle into a Delirium Snifter.

A: poured slow, but still a tremendous amount of pure white head. Probably 3+ fingers worth slowly dissolves leaving about a finger left. Color is almost pure gold and non-transparent.

S: delightful fruit smell with orange peel and lemony scents. Nothing special, but still good and inviting.

T: the typical Tripel taste comes right through. Unfortunately, there's not much else. Plenty of carbonation, but the alcohol seems to dilute the overall taste. Not that there's a huge alcohol presence, but its enough to wonder where the rest of the complexity went.

M&D: plenty of freshness and clean finish with this amount of carbonation, but still falls behind some of the other tripels and the top of the class. Glad I tried it, but not something I would spend a good amount of money on given how much I prefer others in this grouping.

Cheers!

 907 characters

Photo of Maakun
4.38/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Nice big white head. Color is quite clear light straw. Nice visible carbonation going on.

Smell: yeast, cloves, banana, freshly baked bread. Some earthiness.

Taste: a nice mix of spices and malt up front. Then some yeast, citrus and a light bitterness. More spices, but very complex, not just cloves. Light alcohol taste. Aftertase is a bit bitter (lemonpeel) and a bit earthy.

Mouth: this is quite big, full and clings to the mouth in a good way. Nice medium carbonation. Really good.

Overall this is really good. Much more complex than most in the style. I like it quite cold though, too warm and it gets a bit heavy.

 627 characters

Photo of ghurux86
4.27/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

it's good.
appearance: color is a cloudy orange. a light orange. and the head is pretty nice. creamy and mostly whjite. at least a little stayed around most of the time. it does leave some decent lacing but nothing that stands out.
smell: very good. as always i could be completely wrong but i smell banana, orange and maybe some lemon. it smells sweet and great.
taste: it's good. the citris comes through slightly on the taste, but hops come through more. there is a definite taste of alcohol due to the 9.5% ABV. aftertaste is mostly alcohol.
mouthfeel is ok. not bad, not the best. it's pretty good but at times it seems like the carbonation could be cut back.
drinkability: it's good, too bad i don't have another! the overly alcohol aftertaste takes away from this one slightly.

overall a great great brew. would be a 5.0 if the alcohol wasn't so prevalent.

 871 characters

Photo of SmithwicksNut
4.27/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A - Large head with great lacing and a beautiful, cloudy orange color. The bubbles on the head are huge. You almost want to take a picture of it.

S - Fruit and spice hit the nose along with the classic Tripel malt and yeast. This one has a huge bouquet, and the yeast and orange notes are perfectly balanced.

T - This is very good. The yeast is big and tight even after the ale warms. The spices are monstrous. I can pick up some heavy coriander and powdery white pepper and allspice.

The fruits are amazing. This is raw and organic. It really is something else. The alcohol evens things out. Everything is amazingly controlled and balanced. The finish is pale and hoppily bitter, but not overly so.

M - This full-bodied Tripel has some of the best carbonation that I've ever experienced. The complex and bitter finish is in a class all by itself.

D - The amazing flavor of this beer, along with the terrific sensations that it creates in the mouth, makes this one a real classic.

 990 characters

Photo of MufflnMan
4.08/5  rDev -4.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Gorgeous cloudy yellow body with a foamy white head that disappears and comes back to life with a swirl.

Smells of citrus and hops - grapefruits, oranges... maybe some clove, oh yes... and alcohol. Very complex.

Taste is even more complex. Each sip makes me pucker with the bitter hops, flowers, oranges, lemons, more grapefruit, bit of banana. Teeniest bit of alcohol burn at the end, feels like cough syrup on the back of my tongue.

Mouthfeel is very creamy and silky.

NOTE: This is one complex brew which has obliterated my palate from tasting anything else for the night. I can appreciate all the complexities as noted in my grading, but must also note that this is toooo bitter/pungent for my buds, Tripels are not my style. I made the mistake of having it with Manchego which ended up tasting like string cheese.

 823 characters

Photo of etaggie09
4.37/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Appearance: butterscotch color with a quickly diminishing off-white head. low to moderate carbonation. a nice cloudy golden color.

Aroma: sweet fruity lemony smell with some apricot and other fruit in it. some nice alcohol smells.

Taste: lemony citric with a fruity alcoholic kick. Oh wow! Nicely balanced malt and hop flavor. Dry aftertaste. Man this is good.

Mouthfeel: Perfect for the style. good carbonation.

Drinkability: Alcohol is unnoticeable.

Notes: This is the nectar of the gods. I love this beer.

 523 characters

Photo of Yimosan
4.15/5  rDev -3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from an 11.2oz bottle onto my tulip glass.

A: Cloudy peach color with a thick creamy, almost pillow-like head that went on for a long time. Beautiful lacing throughout my glass.

S: I get some citrus and spice (Coriander & Nutmeg). Also, maybe it was my imagination, but I smelled some caramel way way in the back.
(I have been drinking a lot of Porters lately)

T: The initial impression was a bit bitter, however, as the beer warmed up in my glass it mellowed out a lot.

M: Full bodied, creamy and long lasting on the palate.

**I can see why this beer rates as high as it does, it is spectacular, however, I thought it was too bitter for my taste...worth mentioning, Tripel is my favorite variety.

On the ABV, 9.5%...WOOHOO!!! Drink a few of these and you will be talking some Flemish in no time flat, or so you'll think!!!

Salud!

 845 characters

Photo of RandyV
4.47/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Somewhat of a yeasty champagne on the nose, malt and apple as well. On the palate, spicy combined with some green apple tartness and the champagne grape and dryness fills the middle. The spice is pepper and maybe even some clove but the malt provides a nice balance to that, all wrapped up in a creamy mouthfeel.

This is a really tasty ale, something I could drink all the time. It almost makes me want to become a trappist monk just so I could get this from the source. Except my ADHD would make the whole chanting/prayer thing hard to focus on. Oh well.

 556 characters

Photo of Clonies720
4.77/5  rDev +11.4%
look: 5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.75

Appearance: The beer pours a hazy golden color with LOTS of carbonation. A 1-inch head forms immediately and is staying put about 10 minutes after the fact. That's impressive head retention. It leaves some nice lacing as it goes down, but don't count on it sticking around.

Smell: It smells of sweetness, light-colored fruit that I cannot put my finger on, and a boozey-smell that reminds me of champagne. I cannot really smell hops, but let's see how it tastes.

Taste: Clove, banana, spices, esters, and a boozy flavor that warms up along with the beer.

Mouthfeel: Bitter hops are almost non-present at the beginning, but you'll experience them around the end of the beer's flavor. Westmalle Tripel ale has the dry, spicy finish that I crave.

Overall: I could have written another 2-3 paragraphs about this beer, but it's so darn tasty that I hit the major points and skipped the nuances. This is a tasty, fine, and EXPENSIVE beer (Think it was $4.50 or $5 for that one bottle) that one might only buy for a special occasion

 1,029 characters

Photo of MoohMooh
3.05/5  rDev -28.7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Pours a semi-opaque light gold that astonishingly appears to get more opaque after a while, with a huge head, not much lacing. Smells of grain/corn, citrus, apple cider, and orange, with a grassy, boozy feel. Taste is bitter and slightly spicy/peppery, with once again grain, stale bread(?), some apple, and banana. It feels warm and smooth, with medium carbonation, but a light body for a triple. Kinda harsh.

I feel it doesn't really hide its ABV all that well. That makes it a bit hard to get through and kinda mutes the various aromas. Pretty disappointed.

 561 characters

Photo of beals
4.25/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A: Wow, this is totally different than the dubbel! Pale... almost whitish-pale. Thick white--very clean white--head. Beer is cloudy (slightly) from a bit of yeast.

S: Fruity, estery -- like a hefeweizen. Actually, almost like a farmhouse ale. Spicy, clean.

T: Very spicy. Boozy... bit of a bite. Seems stronger than 9.5%.

M: As sharp as the dubbel. Bit easier to handle, though, because of the alcohol. Actually works together very nicely.

D: Tasty, but too strong to be repeatedly drinkable.

 504 characters

Photo of descartes
3.62/5  rDev -15.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Poured from 33 cl bottle.

Appearance: Murky light orange color with half finger of head.
Smell: Rich malty aroma, hints of apple and a whiff of alcohol.
Taste: Slight fruitness in the middle, otherwise the hop/carbination combo overpowers anythinge else.
Mouthfeel: Feels thin and wattery.
Drinkabitlity: Not my thing, could tone down the hops and have a slightly thicker body.

 384 characters

Photo of bigflatsbeerman
4.65/5  rDev +8.6%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Appearance -Brownish yellow not light in appearance more to middle dark tint. Poured from 750 ml corked bottle into my Chimay chalice. Half a finger head (abv being 9.5% means less thick head).
Smell - What hits me the most is a sweet white grape smell.
Taste - Very nice sweeter taste similar to scent (white grapes). Nice dry finish. This is an exceptional well crafted beer. I can smell and taste the alcohol, but in a good way.
Mouthfeel - Medium fair amount of carbonation.
Overall - World class beer (period).

 516 characters

Photo of Bugsey
4.21/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

This is a beautiful beer to both look at and to drink. The color is golden and thick, and the head is creamy white, and slow to dissipate.

For a tripel, I think this one had a bit more of a bracing bite than others. Although it warmed up nicely. The flavor is spicy and herbal, but there is a bite there, something like apricots or something tigher, like grape skins. But the maltiness is heavenly, and the alcohol is so warming.

Very memorable.

 447 characters

Photo of AlexF
4.68/5  rDev +9.3%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

There is two extreme. No taste or bad taste, and too much flavour on the other end. We'll all agree that we prefer to eat and drink stuff that are leaning on the tasty side... but how often have we encountered things that were just TOO much? This beer offers perfect equilibrium in a Tripel.

Flawless appearance, huge foamy head, gold colour with lots of yeasts. Smells of orange, cherry and citrus in a not-too-fruity way.

Taste is once again very balanced. Fruitiness, malt, hop, everything mixes in a perfect way.

This beer is the best tripel I've tasted.

 561 characters

Photo of jizdepski
4.73/5  rDev +10.5%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

poured into a maredsous goblet. absolutely beautiful brew. had an explosive white head that was very active and took on a life of its own. flecks of yeast were present beneath in the brilliant golden liquid below that eventually settled to the bottom. the smell hits you instantly, and from 2 feet away its quite pungent. very lively yeast, peppercorn, ripe fruits, corriander, lemon, and alcohol very noticeable. the taste is a knockout. the depth of flavor is unlike any tripel ive had. phenol alcohol is not hidden, and the coriander is a great companion to that. its got some grassy hops, tart fruits, and a wonderfully earthy yeast taste going on. excellent balance and very assertive. its got a medium body, which feels a bit thicker due to the high carbonation level. drinkability for this one is great considering the abv. maybe the only beer ive ever had that felt and tasted like it was "alive". best tripel i've tasted hands down.

 941 characters

Photo of Morpheus
4.35/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Here goes. I poured a 330mL into a tulip glass. A surprisingly higher than average level of carbonation - it has been a few years since I let a beer foam over! The brew wasw a lighter color than I expected - similar to a cloudy Americam Lager. It is a color I grew up on.

Inhale the nectar, and I sensed a floral bouquet, sweet cereal smell with a late hoppiness.

Taste: It starts with a bitter hop, replaced by a complex flavor profile, in turn returning to the bitter hop essence.

Mouthfeel: a very balanced texture, not unpleasant at all.

Overall, a very good beer but perhaps a smidgeon too much emphasis on hops.

 621 characters

Photo of assmasterson
4.77/5  rDev +11.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Just by the luck of the draw, I picked this one out of a long beer list last night.

Pours out with a slightly burnt orange color and has a modest, light head. The smell and taste have some strong fruit flavors and the carbonation is tight enough to leave it with a clean finish. The amount of alcohol in this brew is pretty high, but does not overpower the senses.

Overall, one of the finest beers I have come across. Given the chance, I would pick this one again in a second.

 478 characters

Photo of Pballa4lyfe
4.18/5  rDev -2.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A- extremely dark brown, almost black...poured with a thick white head

S- hints of fruit, grapes, chocolately

T- wow, i was very impressed by this one, fruity but delicious, little malty, almost oatmealy

M- very carbonated

D- very drinkable

overall, this was a terrrific beer, i will definitely pick another one or few of these up

 335 characters

Photo of AdamMY
3.27/5  rDev -23.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2

I far preferred the Dubbel to the Tripel, The appearance was cloudy, and a bit uninspiring. The smell was nice but mostly oranges and pears, while the taste was quite nice tasting of oranges and cream, but slightly heavy on the Hops. The mouthfeel and drinkability were definitely below par.

 291 characters

Photo of nicefix
4.4/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Beautiful cloudy orange color with some sediment. Decent head with good lace, although not much retension. Smells of lemon, spice, and alcohol. Good carbonation, tastes of ripe fruits with a spicy alcohol kick in the finish. This is a very nice tripel, smooth complex and delicious.

 282 characters

Photo of sbrotschul
5/5  rDev +16.8%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Wow ... this might be a perfect beer! I wrote some notes down while tasting half of the bottle, and then looked at some of the reviews -- and I think that I am not alone in loving this beer.

I picked this beer up on the recommendation of the woman at a bottle shop in Belgium (store description and location, below). This woman is a saint! What a great recommendation.

Appearance: (5.0) The tulip glass looked amazing with the gold color of the beer and eggshell head from the Triple.

Smell: (5.0) Hints of citrus, a little pepper and some apple. As the beer warmed, the smell became more pronounced.

Taste: (5.0) A good spice came through ... very nice. A small amount of alcohol.

Mothfeel (5.0) Good malt with slight carbination.

Overall (5.0) This must be the gold standard for all Belgian beers.

*** Le Moine Austère ***
Just up the road from us in Beligum, is a wonderful bottle shop called the Austere Monk (I'll review it after BA adds it: Le Moine Austère, Rue Dorez 8, Tournai, Belgium) (a review: http://www.monnuage.fr/point-d-interet/le-moine-austere-a41282). My wife and kids found the shop while touring the Grand Place and visiting the Christmas village. The family was excited to bring me to the store and even sent a few photos of the wall of bottles.

As I looked at the selection, I instantly wished that I knew more about Belgium beers. I understand a little French and shopkeeper was willing to bring to me some of the local beers and the traditional favorites. (Side note: it is *very* helpful to have a wife that speaks and understands French!) She pointed out which beers were still made by monks (down to five, she said), and those breweries which tend to create craft beers. She loves to make gift baskets, filled with beers, glasses and other treats. I can't wait to return!

 1,814 characters

Photo of ENogueira
4.75/5  rDev +11%

11.2 oz bottle in a chalice glass. Yellow in color, with a thin head of foam, little lacing. The Westmalle Dubbel is one of my favorite brews, so I had very high hopes for this one, and it didn't disappoint. The sweet aroma of fresh fruit is top notch. The taste hits with sweet, ripe banana initially, then rush of earthy spices and herbs that blends in with perfection. The carbonation is excellent and the finish is hoppy but sweet, and very crisp. The alcohol is surprisingly under control for a 9.5% ABV, and it seems to linger a bit in the background. It's an amazingly engineered trippel. It seems that every Trappist-style ale that comes out of Westmalle is liquid gold. A must for any beer aficionado.

 721 characters

Photo of Albinoh
4.82/5  rDev +12.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Nice presentation, initial rocky head that settles to a lasting lace, some clings to the glass as the beer goes away. Turbid body, brownish-orange. Citric/lemon alcoholic aroma. Crisply and malty upfront with a yeasty sweetness following. Crispy but not extremely crispy. Medium smooth body. Bitter ending that stays in your mouth for long time.

Very nice, very well balanced, those monks really know what they are doing.

 423 characters

Westmalle Trappist Tripel from Brouwerij Westmalle
4.28 out of 5 based on 4,442 ratings.
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