Trappist Westvleteren 8 (VIII) | Brouwerij Westvleteren (Sint-Sixtusabdij van Westvleteren)

Trappist Westvleteren 8 (VIII)Trappist Westvleteren 8 (VIII)
Liked This Beer
4.48 w/ 2,184 ratings
Trappist Westvleteren 8 (VIII)Trappist Westvleteren 8 (VIII)

Brewed by:
Brouwerij Westvleteren (Sint-Sixtusabdij van Westvleteren)

Style: Dubbel

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 8.00%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
(Blue Cap)

Added by BeerAdvocate on 06-03-2001

User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 2,184 |  Reviews: 825
Photo of claspada
4.35/5  rDev -2.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Bottle shared before our most recently group tasting thanks to hoppymcgee. Huge thanks for this one.

Pours a light hazy brown color with light brown hues along the edge. A nice light khaki bubbly head that recedes leaving some nice lacing.

Aromas begin with a nice lightly toasted breadiness. I alos get some nice light Belgian yeast clove and spice, very light however. As it warms I get some dried fruits and some more various spice. Mellow yet very complex.

The tastes follow the nose with rich, sweet maltiness tasting of chocolate, caramel and toasted breadiness. Maybe a sprinkle of brown sugar and dark candy sugar. Flavors of figs and golden raisins and Red Delicious apples emerge as it warms. There is a slight Belgian yeastiness (spice and clove) to balance the sweeter malt flavors.

Mouthfeel is medium to full bodied with perfectly balanced medium carbonation. Finishes sweet and resoundingly fruity with a lingering vinous dryness.

Overall this is a perfect example of what a Belgian Dubbel should be. It took all of my effort to not devour my half-a-glass because I really wanted to enjoy this. Is it worth the price tag, probably not. It is amazing, definitely. I have been trying to track one down for a while and when it if offered to you for free, you say F-Yes! Recommended and definitely worth tracking down as long as you don't break the bank or trade the cellar for it.

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Photo of jbone78
4.35/5  rDev -2.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

No introduction needed. My first one, thanks to tpd975.

A- Pours hazy dark broun into my St. Bernardus goblet. I thought that would be appropriate. Lacing is wonderful.
S- I am not getting anything other than fruits hidden behind alcohol.
T- Raisin, plum, vanilla, sour yeasty character. I dig it.
M- Carbonation perfect. No real malt aftertaste you sometimes get with Dubbels. The alcohol comes trough the nose, little strange.
D- I could drink this everyday.

I'm going to enjoy my beer.

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Photo of DaveJanssen
4.35/5  rDev -2.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Split a 330mL two ways in tulip glasses. Cap says best by 17-6-12.

Ar: Fruity, floral, herbal hop, grape, plum, raisin, doughy with caramel sweetness, unique, light alcohol, smooth roast, fruit a little bit non-descript

Ap: Red, very thick dense tan head, light lace, great retention

F: Toffee, earthy caramel, mellow dried fruit, light tartness like in dark cherries, toasty dry end with bread crust, spicy herbal hops at the end, pleasant fine bitterness, clean doughy malt, initial candy sweetness, light alcohol

M: thick creamy full mouthfeel, high fine carbonaiton, very dry end, alcohol warmth

O: very full, rich caramel sweetness but dries nicely, complex, nice hop presence, unique, alcohol becomes a bit rough with warmth

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Photo of QuadBen
4.35/5  rDev -2.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Photo of JonathanL7890
4.35/5  rDev -2.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Brought a bottle to our BA tasting last night.
Poured a substantial head , Color was dark brownish. Not too murky, fairly clear -- but I had the first pour out of the bottle.
Smell: dried fruits, figs. just the slightest amount of hops noted.
Taste: sweet raisins. Malty, bready, very complex. Nicely carbonated.
Mouthfeel: Just like a nice belgian beer should be. Very well balanced.
Drinkability: I could drink 1 bottle by myself but due to the rarity, this probably won't be happening unless I make the trip to Belgium.

A very nice dubbel. The best I've had

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Photo of chicagobeerriot
4.35/5  rDev -2.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Bottled in September of 2008. Pours thickly veiled brown with yellow-tan highlights -- almost like the inside of an overripe plum. Modest head dissipates to a fine surface film. Smells of prune, plum, banana, a little bit of cherry-tinged funk. Comes together to smell a bit like unsweetened purple grape juice. The smell is a true harbinger of the taste: deep plum and light caramel flavors form the backbone as banana and subtle cherry tart notes take turns. The light tartness builds a bit and ends up being the last note at the finish line. Lots of subtle complexity here for the style: no one flavor dominates or speaks out of turn. Very drinkable in that you can keep discovering new flavors over multiple servings. A real standout in the Belgian brown class.

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Photo of Liverpool08
4.35/5  rDev -2.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours a dark murky reddish brown, not much head at all. Aromas of dried fruits, brown sugar, caramel. Flavor follows with raisins, dates, sweet port, and lots of other delicious notes. Each sip brings all of these to the front of your tastebuds. Its also a very light and crisp Dubbel. VERY drinkible. While not quite as good as the Westy 12, still an outstanding beer.

 369 characters

Photo of BrewMaster
4.35/5  rDev -2.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

It sits a clear dark brown in the glass with a lacy head about 1 cm thick on top. The aroma is malty with a bit of salty sweetness. The flavors open with a grand entrance of brown sugar, carrot, and smokiness. The middle is dominated by caramel, toffee, and slight fruit flavors. The beer has a magnificently spicy end. This is by all means an excellent beer.

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Photo of novamat
4.35/5  rDev -2.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Photo of Lare453
4.35/5  rDev -2.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Photo of therica
4.35/5  rDev -2.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Carried with reverence from Brugge, Belgium to the USA in January 2006, consumed 3 November 2006.

I'd heard so much about this beer-- and people on the Belgian train bowed with awed reverence when they saw the bottle I was carrying. I wasn't disappointed-- only mildly so, actually-- it's a beer, not a god! ha ha

Appearance-- incredibly nice, a dark purplish-brown with some effervescence and a gorgeous stained-brown even head.

Smell-- complex, enticing, smoky.

Taste-- much like the smell, lots of complex florals, prune, apricot, malt, caramel, burnt-wood smoke, traditional Belgian flat-hops but not much bitterness, a very nice experience.

Mouthfeel-- a nice bouquet ot be savored.

Drinkability-- goes down easily, except that you are continually grasping to identify the complex flavors. Very drinkable-- if you were fortunate enough to find enough to consume in-quantity.

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Photo of PrinceDarren
4.35/5  rDev -2.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.75

I initially tried this along with a Westvleteren 12 and a Rochefort 10.

Poured into a new belgium tulip to reveal a thick, foamy head. The aroma reveals some citrus notes. It is decent dubbel that is easy to drink, but doesn't exactly stand out.

I would struggle to identify this in a blind taste test against other belgian-style beers. I can't see any characteristics that explain what makes it unique. I have a feeling that I should not have tried it alongside the other two quads as they seemed to over power it a little.

Edit: Tried it again at Abbey St. Sixtus along with the 12 and the Blonde and this was my favorite of the three. Definitely better this time around. Loved it.

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Photo of GScow
4.35/5  rDev -2.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Photo of NJB145
4.35/5  rDev -2.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Photo of bonkers
4.35/5  rDev -2.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I recieved this in a recent trade, poured into a goblet from an 11.2 ounce bottle. Pours a murky brown, huge 4 finger head, that leaves nice lacing. Dark fruit is primary on the nose, some spices. The flavors of plums, dates and apples meld very nicely, not overly sweet. The beer is very smooth, it has a slightly sweet finish. The body is medium, smooth, well carbonated. A very smooth, easy drinking beer, I can see why it is a classic.

 439 characters

Photo of mothman
4.35/5  rDev -2.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Tan head. Caramel brown color.

Raisins, toffee, bananas, red apples, molasses, caramel, brown sugar. Some heat.

Medium to full bodied. Ends a little sweet and sugary.

A lot better than I was expecting. A very nice Belgian dubbel!

 233 characters

Photo of OldEngineOil
4.35/5  rDev -2.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

An excellent beer. Subtle and complex, but overall flavor did not jump out as exceptional enough to justify the ranking to me. I am new to the Belgian beer scene, but personally, I prefer to buy one of the good North American made Belgian style beers over this.

 261 characters

Photo of Chizoad
4.35/5  rDev -2.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Thanks to Jon for this one.

Swirl of caramel colors with a big head in the goblet. Looks good but no way can you tell what to expect.

Really complex but fairly quiet aromas. Slight booziness and pepper.

Caramel, bittering hops, raisins in small doses, maybe some chocolate and bread in there.

Creamy, but well carbonated leading to a great sipper. I love it when these relatively heavy beers are carbonated like this. Forces you to enjoy it slowly, like a great meal. Top notch dubbel which sadly is mostly unavailable to me.

 529 characters

Photo of atpca
4.35/5  rDev -2.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Photo of mrandypandy
4.35/5  rDev -2.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4.5

12oz bottle graciously shared by jmheart. Direct from his trip in April.

A- Pours a slightly murky brown/plum. Minimal haze, and the fluffy white head is reduced to a ring as the beer progresses. High carbonation.
S- Sweet. Dark belgian candy sugar dominates with plums and figs and other dark fruits in the background.
T- The dark candy sugar comes through again, but is well tempered with the dark fuit flavor. Strong malty background with some spicy notes as well.
M- My ONLY complaint about the beer. The carbonation levels were too high, and the beer felt fizzy/zesty, which detracted from my overall enjoyment.
D- Even with the carbonation this beer drinks well and I would gladly have this as one of my staples (if it were readily available).

Overall - Despite the hype that the 12 gets, the 8 holds its own as one of the better/best dubbel's out there. My distaste for high carbonation aside, this is a great beer and a great example of the style. Thanks again, Jeffrey!

 981 characters

Photo of ElGuapo
4.35/5  rDev -2.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This beer pours to a very dark brown like charred wood. It is topped by a massive off-white foam that wants to stay for a long time without paying rent, and leave a lot behind after it dies to a lace. When you pour the whole bottom of the bottle, there is a dark blob of sediment in the middle of the head that is kind of scary looking, but the flavor was not affected in a negative way by the addition of the full contents of the bottle.

The sweet cherries and raspberries get to you first. Other aromas that come are wheat bread, coffee, and a little bit of chocolate. Yeast is also present, especially after you pour the entire bottle into the glass. I chose a goblet for this one, and I found it to be to be a good choice because I was able to pick up a lot of the aroma with a bit of swirling.

The sweetness in the aroma is not nearly as strong as it is in the aroma. Most of the flavor is dominated by roasty flavors of toast and coffee. The alcohol is present, but it is not overpowering at all.

The body is very rich. It is very crisp, and it has a bite that stays with you right till the end.

This is another great Westy. A complex brew that would appeal to anyone.

 1,190 characters

Photo of brianmandell
4.36/5  rDev -2.7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Bottle with freshness date 10/10/16

Deep chestnut brown; a bit murky. Aromas of sweet malts, fruity yeast, brown sugar and dark fruit -particularly raisin. The taste mirrors the aroma with some brightness in the malt from the creamy carbonation. The mouthfeel is excellent with an oily viscous feel. The only mark against this beer is some slight solvent alcohol flavor on the finish.

 385 characters

Photo of weissbierdrinker
4.36/5  rDev -2.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Poured into a Maredsous Chalice. Heads settles into a thin tan head that last almost until the beer is gone. Looks a bit like the top of a cloud. Carbonation is clearly active bubbling up past the head and producing a little beer head mountain range. Color is a deep ruby red.

Smell is of Figs, dried plums, brown sugar, cinnamon, and I'm sure some other things I'm missing.

Wow what can I say about this beer that hasn't already been said. It's a little bit sweet, with figs, dried plums, and brown sugar throughout. A brief hint of hops. There is a nice chewiness about the beer and it has a spicy dry finish with just a touch of alcohol that tops the whole thing off making this a fantastic beer that I could drink again and agin.

 736 characters

Photo of jgasparine
4.36/5  rDev -2.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Served at In De Vrede, Westvleteren, Belgium on 3/20/2010.

A- Poured from the bottle into a Westvleteren challice with a diffuse khaki colored head with little bits of lacing here and there. The little head that's there is actually well-retained. The body is a semi-opaque garnet-tinged brown. No visible carbonation from the sides of the glass.

S- Initial impressions are rich candy malt, some melanoidins, perceived molasses, some faint Belgian yeast esters, and a very faint aroma of stale hops. As the beer warmed, the bouquet really opened-up to reveal some rich caramel and chocolate notes that were not initially there. Again, as the beer further warmed, some amazing fruity esters appeared: chocolate, cherries, dried dark fruit, leather.

T- Very rich flavor right off-the-bat; big candy and roasted malts, that perceived molasses, some candi sugar, and some mild Belgian yeast esters. Some mild hop bitterness comes in midway along with some very mild nuttiness, which last through the sustained finish. As the beer warmed, some amazing fruity esters appeared: chocolate, cherries, dried dark fruit, leather. Amazing.

M- Thick, chewy mouthfeel. An amazing texture, yet the carbonation is a bit overactive... which makes you feel a bit bloated after each sip. This overcarbonation is a detractor.

D- The carbonation issue and the associated bloatiness makes it hard to drink in volume.

 1,399 characters

Photo of funkel81
4.36/5  rDev -2.7%

Trappist Westvleteren 8 (VIII) from Brouwerij Westvleteren (Sint-Sixtusabdij van Westvleteren)
Beer rating: 97.3% out of 100 with 2,184 ratings
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