Trappist Westvleteren 12 (XII)
Brouwerij Westvleteren (Sint-Sixtusabdij van Westvleteren)

Trappist Westvleteren 12 (XII)Trappist Westvleteren 12 (XII)
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Belgian Quadrupel (Quad)
Ranked #1
Ranked #24
4.66 | pDev: 8.8%
Brouwerij Westvleteren (Sint-Sixtusabdij van Westvleteren)
Trappist Westvleteren 12 (XII)Trappist Westvleteren 12 (XII)
Notes: (Yellow Cap)
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Reviews: 1,946 | Ratings: 6,684
Photo of JediMasterLenin
4.52/5  rDev -3%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

33cl bottle into a snifter

Look: Pours a gorgeous deep amber with a dark purple/red hue to it. Light tan head dissolves into a ring around the glass.
Smell: Brown sugar, dates, red grape, dark marble bread, and prune. A smokey quality there as well.
Taste: Much like it's aroma, dark pitted fruit and brown sugar, the smokey quality is much less pronounced here. but there is a wine-like tanic dryness on the finish.
Feel: Soft medium bodied, with small foamy bubbles and a dry, tanic finish.
Overall: Fantastic! Dark fruit, dark grain, brown sugar all mixes with a dryness that keeps the sweetness from lingering.

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Photo of jprock01
5/5  rDev +7.3%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

I went to the abbey last week, and brought two six packs home, $25 per six-pack. The best pure beer I have ever had. It is easy to add ingredients or to age beer in whiskey barrels to change the flavor, but that is not making pure beer.
I think I'll become a monk and join the abbey, just so I can drink it everyday.

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Photo of kinglouix
3.78/5  rDev -18.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I have often heard that if you make something hard to get or hard to find the public will want it all the more. I finally found this beer after realizing you cannot get it at their brewery and that the pub they serve it at across the street is often closed. I finally found it at an oyster bar in Ghent. It poured a nice brown with a good deal of carbonation. I found it was smooth, drinkable and enjoyable but completely overhyped. Tasted to me more like a German double than a Belgium quad and for the ridiculous price of 16 euro's a bottle it is a true avoid.

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Photo of Herbabee
5/5  rDev +7.3%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

just thought i'd stop in and pile on. finally blessed to pop one open. it is no lie, all that they say.

a cloudy grey-plum hue held up to a bright light. no noticable particulates swimming about.
a persistent surface fizz in the glass, nearly menacing.
complexities of the sweet, stone-fruit and bitter. deep and pronounced.
like a razzle-dazzle maze upon the tongue and senses, it lingers.

now, the task is to protect my stash from myself... special milestone occasions only!!

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Photo of FriedSlug
4.75/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

Amazing beer. Burnt sugar, fruit, pear maybe, fig, peppery. Smooth and sweet with a bitter finish. Very carbonated and tasty. Was definitely worth getting my chance to try it.

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Photo of jcruelty
4.21/5  rDev -9.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Friend brought this back from Belgium. It's several years old and a bit funky, not quite in the same league as Trappist Rochefort 10, but then again who knows. Pretty good. Funky

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Photo of zuun
5/5  rDev +7.3%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

I've tasted Westvleteren 8 first and then 12 right after 8.
L-Very similar to 8. Dark brown body and beige foam on the top with nice thickness.
S-Can imagine the taste would be sweet. Blueberry, prune, bready.
T-Nice sweetness from the beginning, while 8 has sweetness from the middle to end. I'm not big fan of too much sweetness such as speedway mokaside, but both 8 and 12 has very nice, semi-sweetness
F-Creamy, foamy very smooth
O-Most expensive ever, best beer ever.

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Photo of Sandis
4/5  rDev -14.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from bottle at home. I tried this once in 2017 and did not enjoy it quite as much as I do this time around. The carbonation was not as elevated in this current version which is nice. A real nice mix of sugar and spice.

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Photo of darktronica
4.71/5  rDev +1.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

After having it in the American gift brick from a number of years ago, now I'm finally in Belgium able to enjoy it at the source. The epitome of a Belgian quad. Brown sugar and chocolate with Belgian spices and a bit of raisin, exceptionally smooth and exceptionally complex.

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Photo of cuy50
4.72/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

It's just so damn drinkable. Tastes like a 7% abv beer, no sickly oversweetness or bitterness, or really anything. There's nothing that particularly stands out, and that's why it's so good. You just don't think about it much, it goes down so easily. Perfectly balanced creation.

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Photo of donkeylips
4.7/5  rDev +0.9%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.75

I got to drink this across the street from the abbey. Luscious and full, I was struck by the balance between alcohol and sweet flavors. Simultaneously a liquid lunch and clean on the palate. The alcohol cleanses the palate after the cacophony of flavors of ripe fruits, caramel, and molasses. I was amazed that a beer this rich left me itching for more, as I would expect the richness to be over-satiating. Just the opposite.

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Photo of marcbosch
4.66/5  rDev 0%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

L: Opaque, reddish brown, a bit muddy. Thin head.
S: Fruit, both sweet and dry, caramel, a bit of cellar. Complex and strong.
T: Intense but nuanced. Malt, dry fruit, toffee, a bit of booze.
F: Big body but moderate carbonation. Rather dry finish.
O: Simply outstanding.

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Photo of Beermotor
4.93/5  rDev +5.8%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Sourced from a team-buy import crate.
Consumed at around 50F temp as Belgians are made to consume at deep cellar temps.

Gloriously brown and Belgian.

Taste is similar to its sibling St, Bernardus Abt 12 but with more "hair" on it, probably due to slight differences in yeast and water. Very rich and almost overwhelming.

Take a sip of this then a sip of any other beer brewed by mortal hands.
Ponder why they are both called "beer".

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Photo of davidperez
5/5  rDev +7.3%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

I've been saving this for some years and until now I realize that the cap of the bottle has a date, which most likely is a best before date (11.03.18), and it is a few months overdue. Let's hope those months did not tinker negatively with the bevy of surprises this has to offer.

Served in a Chimay chalice, it pours a very dark brown, opaque, with a two-finger creamy and frothy head with decent retention.
The heads starts to diminish and it leaves a small layer of foam with a clear efervescent epicenter on top, where the lively carbonation continues to express itself.
The pour was delicate and purposeful, leaving the yeast sediments in the bottle to get a first impression of the beer without them, and despite of that some chunks of matter are visibly starting to precipitate slowly from the head to the bottom of the chalice.

The nose is not as assertive as I would have thought. I don't know if those overdue months are coming back to haunt me or if the sediments in the bottle are needed to aromatize the entirety of the chalice. Nonetheless, a gentle swirl suffices to get a notion of the bouquet.
Faint notes of dark fruits, a bit of spices.
The head will not yield, those previous swirls resurrected the foam and the efeverscent epicenter is still going strong.

Never have I ever tasted a beer with such intensity of flavor.
The expressive and zealous carbonation is captivating, fiercely pushing its flavor into every corner of your mouth.
It overpowers your palate with a parade of figs, dates, plums, overripe red apple, prunes, milk chocolate, clove, pepper, cinnamon, liquor as in whiskey, molasses, and a very distinct and appealing herbal freshness. This beer leaves me puzzled as I am certain that there are more notes in there that I do not have the prowess or proficiency to pinpoint and call out with exactness. To taste this beer is a humbling experience.
It is most intriguing to notice that all those flavor seem to blend in perfectly, synchronized performers with the knowledge that the sum of their parts is greather than themselves.
Full body, creamy mouthfeel with The perfect carbonation that gives you the impression that the beer literally expands inside your mouth. This is the most special feel of a beer that I have ever experienced.
The finish is perennial, its last remnants stay with you until the moment you decide to taste this elixir again. Notes of dark fruits, liquor, clove, pepper, and slightly unbalanced at the very end tilting towards bitterness.

Evidently, the long wait was fruitful.
Yesterday, for comparative and elucidating purposes, I drank a Rochefort 10 and a St Bernardus 12 that I started aging at the same time as this Westvletern 12.
I've had those beers some times before, and I do not agree that they are on par with the Westvletern XII. They barely fall short, but they do.
The Westvletern 12 is more explosive in its flavor, and its notes form a unity that the others do not reach.

Non plus ultra.

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Photo of RayCannata
4.57/5  rDev -1.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.75

Had a friend bring it back from Amsterdam (hard to find there too!) Tasted a lot like the St Bernardus Abt 12 but with maybe less of a bitter aftertaste. A thicker head than most similar beers. Malty, rich flavor. Beautiful color.

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Photo of emincems
4.38/5  rDev -6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

This might be the most respectable beer in the world and known as the best trappist beer. This one was four years old.
It pour very dark brown color with medium lasting medium sized off white head. It has strong lacing. Aroma is very complex, it smells strongly of molasses, dark bread, raisin and berry like fruits. One of the most complex taste ever! Taste is moderately high sweet and subtle bitter, malt-hop balance tilts toward malt. You can realize different flavors in every sip. Raisin, molasses, licorice, fig, toffee and berry like frutiness... there is a perfect combination of many flavors. Finish is dry and strongly spicy. Great belgian yeast character! Very full bodied and it has moderate carbonation. Abv is well hidden and %10 abv is undetectable. And the best part, this is very easy to drink. Not my favorite beer of all time due to high sweetness and lack of hops, but it really deserves its fame and respect. As I always say monks know beer!

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Photo of Tony210
4.8/5  rDev +3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Huge aroma of dried cherries & figs upon first pour. Has the requisite Belgian yeast foamy head with lots of carbonation in the form of microscopic bubbles. A bit too carbonated & foamy for me, but a few quick swirls of the glass fixes that. Definitely a big beer, it is amazing this beer is made with only 4 ingredients. Lots of dried fruits, molasses, a bit boozy. Great brew.
Thanks to Chad for sharing!

5 rating

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Photo of JackRWatkins
4.75/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

Deep amber mahogany color pretty 1 finger head, off white

Prominent phenolic notes, banana and clove, boozy, a savory quality, some chocolate

Malt forward, fruit, but less of it than st bern, crisp, but not sharp, pleasant estery quality marries very well with phenols and malt, crisp sweetness and touches of cherry

Medium body

It’s better and it’s different than St. Bernardus, and I love st. Bern with all my heart. It’s less forthcoming, feels more like beer and is simply phenomenal. That being said it’s not light years better, but is marginally better. I would argue that it is a fundamentally different beer.

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Photo of jmdrpi
4.23/5  rDev -9.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

330 ml fresh bottle in a bar in Brugge, BE. poured into goblet.

pours a very dark brown, moderate tan head. rich malty aroma - dark fruit, toffee. taste is fairly dry - not sweet at all. medium bodied.

overall a bit disappointed in this fresh - luckily I was able to bring home a few bottles to age, I think this will improve a bunch like the similar St. Bernardus

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Photo of The4wills
5/5  rDev +7.3%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

L: wow, deep dark color
S: so many flavors, where to start.
T: best beer In the world. Sweet, spice, linguring wonderful ness
F: each and every part of the mouth is an experience
O: still the best in the World

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Photo of PlinyTheEsq
5/5  rDev +7.3%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

As shocking as it sounds, worth the $65 for 12 oz. If you are a fan of Trappist/Belgium variety, this beer is a must try. It is amazing on the nose, mouthful and taste. Perhaps the perfect beer.

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Photo of JRG281
4.85/5  rDev +4.1%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.75

Pretty sweet for a beer. Very fruity and brown. Definitely an amazing beer and I was happy to be able to drink it. Out of a party of 7, we agreed that it wasn't that much more special than some of the current New England beers. But if you can try it, …., it is not overhyped. It's really that good.

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Photo of Holderness
4.66/5  rDev 0%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

L -- Pours a very deep amber body with total clarity. Very gentle pour produces three fingers of beautiful, thick pale tan head that retains and laces excellently. The canonical dark Belgian beer appearance
S -- Brown bread, fig, prune, raisin, molasses, caramelized brown sugar, toffee, hard candy
T -- Lovely semi-sweet toasty malt notes dominate the palate, alongside sugar-coated dried dark fruit, a very light herbal hoppiness, and gently fruity yeast esters
O -- Glad to finally be getting my hands on a few bottles of this while attending a conference in Brussels. This is a true masterpiece and is noticeably better than Rochefort or Saint Bernardus, imo. Didn't pick up from the brewery, but from the store it was quite pricey ($15/bottle), so I feel that I have to lower the overall some to account for that


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Photo of kitch
4.22/5  rDev -9.4%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A 330ml bottle with a cap date (bottled +3 years) of 1st September 2019. Poured into a Chimay goblet glass.

Appearance: After a careful pour to leave most of the yeast in the bottle, a clear brown colour with a copper red hue and a just over one finger off white head that had great retention, but eventually settled to a very nice self replenishing cap while leaving great lacing around the glass.

Aroma: Strong fruitiness, apple, plum, dates, fig, toffee with light clove and banana notes.

Taste: Sweet, plum, dates, fig, banana bread, toffee, yeast and a touch of spice.

Mouthfeel: Creamy, medium to full bodied, with moderate carbonation.

Overall: I’m not a huge fan of sweetness, and this definitely leans on the sweet side, perhaps overly so for me. I prefer both Rochefort 10 and St. Bernardus Abt 12 over this. It’s still good, and not by any means bad, but if I had to pick a special Westvleteren beer, it would definitely be a fresh bottle of the Westvleteren Blond, as that is just one of the best Belgian Pale Ale’s ever.

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Photo of Bombelsky
4.8/5  rDev +3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.75

[ ] Medium Hoppy aroma herbal hops fruits from Forrest bread crust medium high level. First impression.
[ ] Hugh malty grainy flavor, bread and prunes.
[ ] Hugh creamy foam. Very good lacing
[ ] Dry finish. Cherry, spicy
[ ] Fluffy, creamy and velvety palate
[ ] Full bodied
[ ] Warm alcohol

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Trappist Westvleteren 12 (XII) from Brouwerij Westvleteren (Sint-Sixtusabdij van Westvleteren)
Beer rating: 100 out of 100 with 6684 ratings